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Set up and manage payroll items for your insurance benefit plan

SOLVEDby QuickBooksQuickBooks Desktop Payroll14Updated August 17, 2022

Learn how to set up and manage payroll items for your insurance benefit plan in QuickBooks Online Payroll and QuickBooks Desktop Payroll to track and tax it appropriately.

If your company has an insurance benefit plan, you may need to set up items in QuickBooks to track.

Here’s how you add, edit, and track your insurance benefit plan in QuickBooks.

Step 1: Determine which health benefits to set up

Talk to your insurance plan provider to learn more about your policy.

Step 2: Set up a medical, vision, or dental insurance payroll item

Once you know the details of the insurance benefits from your provider, follow the steps below to add a payroll item for medical, vision, or dental insurance.

For HSA or FSA, check out Set up a Health Savings Account item or Set up a Flex Spending Account(FSA) item.

Note: Not sure which payroll service you have? Here's how to find your payroll service.

Note: For any other pre-tax insurance not listed in QuickBooks, use the vision insurance item.

  1. Go to Payroll, then Employees.
  2. Select your employee.
  3. From Deductions & contributions, select Start or Edit.
  4. Select + Add Deduction/contribution
  5. From the dropdown menu, select the following:
    • Deduction/contribution: Add deduction/contribution
    • Deduction/contribution type: Health insurance
    • Type: Select Medical insurance, Vision Insurance, or Dental Insurance.
  6. In the Description (appears on paycheck) field, enter the provider’s name.
  7. Select Flat amount or Percentage of gross pay, then enter the amount or percent per paycheck.
  8. Select Pre-tax insurance premium or Taxable insurance premium.
  9. If you contribute a matching contribution, add an amount or percent per paycheck for the company contribution.
  10. When finished, select Save, then Done.

Step 1: Set up the health insurance items

Create a deduction item if your employee pays into their health insurance plan. If your company also contributes, create a company contribution.

Set up a health benefit insurance deduction item

  1. Go to Lists, then Payroll Item List.
  2. Select Payroll Item dropdown, then New.
  3. Select Custom Setup, then Next.
  4. Select Deduction or Company contribution then Next.
  5. Enter the item name such as medical, vision, and dental, and select Next.
  6. Select the name of the agency to which liability is paid (or add it),  and the account number. Then select Next.
  7. Set the Tax Tracking Type to Premium Only/125 (for pre-tax) and None (for after tax).
  8. Select Next three times.
    • For None tax tracking type, select net pay in the Gross vs. net window, then Next.
  9. Leave Default rate and limit fields blank. You can add the rate and limit when the item is added to the employee profile.
  10. Select Finish.

Set up company contribution item

  1. Go to Lists, then Payroll Item List.
  2. Select Payroll Item dropdown, then New.
  3. Select Custom Setup, then Next.
  4. Select Company Contribution, then Next.
  5. Enter the item name, then Next.
  6. Select the name of the agency to which liability is paid (or add it), the account number, and the expense account that you want to track the item. Select Next
  7. Set the tax tracking type to None. Select Next three times.
  8. Leave Default rate and limit fields blank. You can add the rate and limit when the item is added to the employee profile.
  9. Select Finish.

Step 2: Add the item to the employee profile

  1. Select Employees, then Employee Center.
  2. Select your employee.
  3. Select Payroll Info.
  4. In the section for Additions, Deductions, and Company Contributions, add the health benefit insurance items.
  5. Enter the amount per period and the limit.
  6. Select OK.

Step 3: Make sure the items are on your employees’ paychecks

Each time you pay your employees, these benefits should appear in your employees' paychecks.

Edit or remove an insurance item

If you need to make changes or remove an insurance item, here’s how:

  1. Go to Payroll, then Employees.
  2. Select your employee.
  3. From Deductions & contributions, select Start or Edit.
  4. Select Edit ✎ next to the contribution you want to modify or select the Trash bin icon to remove the contribution. 
  5. Select Save, then Done.

Modify the payroll item

  1. Go to Lists, then select Payroll Item List.
  2. Right-click the item and select Edit Payroll Item.
  3. Change the info as needed on each window.
  4. Select Finish.

Remove the payroll item

  1. Select Employees,  then Employee Center.
  2. Select your employee. 
  3. Select Payroll Info.
  4. In the section for Additions, Deductions, and Company Contributions, select the amount (if there's any), and the item name, then press Delete on your keyboard.

Track insurance benefit plan contribution

If you need to run a report for the Insurance benefit plans, learn how to run payroll reports in QuickBooks Online Payroll and QuickBooks Desktop Payroll.

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