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Intuit

Set up payroll without a subscription

Learn how to set up manual payroll in QuickBooks Desktop.

If you'd like to do your payroll manually, track it in QuickBooks Desktop. Just remember, you'll need to calculate and enter payroll taxes, and file your tax forms yourself.

Need help running payroll? Sign up for a new QuickBooks Desktop Payroll subscription or reactivate an old account.

Set up manual payroll

Before you can manually run payroll in QuickBooks Desktop, you need to enable payroll inside your QuickBooks settings.

Note: Before you set up manual payroll, be sure to update your version of QuickBooks so you get the latest fixes and improvements.

QuickBooks Desktop 2018 or later

  1. From the Edit dropdown menu, select Preferences.
  2. Select Payroll & Employees, then select the Company Preferences tab.
  3. In the QuickBooks Desktop Payroll Features section, select the Full payroll and the Manual Payroll checkboxes.
  4. In the Get payday peace of mind window, select Next and then Activate in the confirmation screen.
  5. Select OK to apply the changes.
  6. Select OK to exit our of the preferences window.

QuickBooks Desktop 2017

If you’re using QuickBooks Desktop 2017, contact support for help.

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