First Option Newsletter

December 2019

It's that time of year again! We hope you had a great 2019 and are looking forward to 2020. 

Regarding 1099's, as of the writing of this newsletter there are no programming changes necessary. Instructions for running 1099's are listed below for your convenience. 

However, for next year, there are major changes to the 1099 filing process which will now break out non-employee compensation (box 7) on a new separate form.  There will be a second form for Miscellaneous Income. More information on this will be forthcoming and you can check our web page for blog articles regarding this as well. 

The deadlines for filing W-2s and 1099s, are the same as last year,  please see below for more information. 

For year end, we have some sample knowledge base entries that you may find helpful and have added our holiday schedule for 2020.

Also, there is a new form W-4 for this coming year. 

And lastly, we have included 2020 Federal Wage Limits and 2020 Retirement Plan Contribution limits. 

Wishing you the best this New Year!

 GUI Upgrade of Financial Application
A1Version 10.1 Upgrade to Version 11

This applies to those of you who are on the GUI version of the Financial Application.

When Microsoft announced its decision to drop support for ActiveX and IE, it required a redesign of the deployment tool as well as Smartframe templates currently used for version 10.1.  Version 11 templates remove browser dependencies and a
new Deployment tool that simplifies the process of getting the application to our users. 

The major change for First Option Financial users will be the application will no longer be launched via IE.  In previous versions of the Newlook Smartframe, the runtime window consisted of a Newlook ActiveX control that only ran in Internet Explorer. 

In Newlook 11, the technology used to create the Smartframe runtime window has been replaced with an embedded chromium-based browser object, which is independent of any installed browser. The HTML templates have also been redesigned using a modern framework, with UI/UX best practice guidelines in mind. 

This allows us to deploy the new version with minimum impact to the end user.   We are currently testing the new version and will announce beta and GA dates in early January. 

Conversion to VTL
First Option IBM i hosting servers are now using Data Protection Backup services with offsite storage with a VTL based backup solution.  

Using IBM® Backup, Recovery, and Media Services (BRMS) and a PowerProtect DD Series Appliance, the data is kept at 2 sites to maintain offsite data capabilities.  

The daily backup retention is 15 days, weekly backup is 5 weeks, and monthly backup is 13 months.  

This solution was implemented July 2019. 

January 31st Deadline for W-2s and 1099 Misc
No Changes from Last Year
Businesses are required to file their copies of  Form W-2, submitted to the Social Security Administration, by January 31st 2020. 
The new January 31 2020 filing deadline also applies to Form 1099-MISC reporting non-employee compensation. 


  KB2Knowledgebase Entries
Year End Knowledge Base Entries

What options do I use to print 1099's?
Note: As of the writing of this newsletter there are no programming changes required for the 2019 1099's. Click link below for printing instructions. 

Accounting Period Open/Close
How do I change the G/L accounting period open/closed flags if I have already cloned them from a previous year?
To access and change the Valid for General Ledger fields in the Accounting file, and if you have cloned the accounting period and therefore copied the Closed period fields;
Use #14-Update Accounting Period Flags on the G/L  Supervisor menu.  
Enter the Corp# and year that need to be changed and press ENTER.  In the column 'Valid for G/L' key a 'Y' to allow entries to be posted into the period or an 'N' to prevent entries from being posted.  

Accounting Period Open/Close (cont.)

For more information about accounting periods, cloning and re-setting values go to the General Ledger Manual page 25 & 126.

Open New Year

How do I open a New Year for Accounts Payable and General Ledger?

Create the accounting period for each Corp/Fund for the new year. (this example is from 2019 to New Year 2020)
You can easily clone from one year to the next using Option 18 - Clone Accounting Periods , from the  General Ledger File Maintenance  menu.
You will need to key in the Corp/Fund and the "from" year 2019, then the same Corp/Fund and the 'To" year 2020, at the copy period closed area, key in a "N" and the following fields will appear.

From Corp# : 2 To Corp# : 2 

From Year : 2019 To Year : 2020

Copy Period Closed Data . . . .: N (Y,N) 

Set 12 months to Yes or No 
Valid For GL . . . . . : Y 
A/P Closed . . . . . . : N 
A/R Closed . . . . . . : N 

Set the Valid for GL, AP Closed, and AR Closed as shown above. You will need to do this for all Corps/Funds.

Updated Form W-4 for 2020
W4The IRS has modified Form W-4, Employee's Withholding Certificate for the 2020 tax year. This is due to the 

The new form is broken into five steps for employees to complete; personal information, accounting for multiple jobs, claiming dependents, other adjustments, and signature and attestation.

The biggest change was the removal of withholding allowances, which was tied to an individual's personal exemptions. Personal exemptions were eliminated by the TCJA. 

Employers are required to have all new employees complete the 2020 W-4 beginning Jan. 1, 2020. Current employees will not be required to complete a 2020 W-4, unless they are requesting a change to their withholding.  

You can also use The Tax Withholding Estimator at:
2020 Federal Wage Base Limits
Social Security (6.2%) 137,700 (up from 132,900)
Medicare (1.45%) No Limit
Federal Unemployment (FUTA) 7,000 (same as last year)


2020 Retirement Contribution Limits
401k 19,500 (up from 19,000)
Roth 401k, 403(b), SARSEP, 457 19,500 (up from 19,000)
Catch-up 401k, 403(b), 457  6,500 (up from 6,000)

2020 Holiday Schedule
Click the link below for our 2020 Holiday Schedule.

If you would like to receive reminders, please Subscribe to our News section via the Helpdesk. 

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