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AMS - 2018 payroll tax changes (effective January 2018)


Follow the instructions below to update your AgManagement System (AMS) to reflect tax changes effective January 2018. (Tax information is taken from IRS Notice 1036, revision January 2018.)


Please pay close attention to notes in red. AMS has been incapable of fully supporting federal tax changes for several years now, but users have opted to continue using it by getting as close as possible to the published tax changes. Since state tax tables are "embedded" in the program, they cannot be changed and are now over fifteen years old! AMS also cannot support the Additional Medicare Tax that was added for 2014, but since it only affects employees making more than $200,000 per year, it may not affect most AMS users.



When making the changes specified below, be SURE to run AMS with a date in 2018 so payroll taxes are updated for the correct calendar year!


1 - Update FICA Employee rate and verify your FICA/FUTA/SUTA wage limits and your SUTA tax percentage rate

On the Payroll Utilities menu, run the "Payroll Parameters" option and proceed to page 2 (press [CTRL][ENTER] at screen 1 to accept values and continue).

Ensure that the "FICA (Employee)" Rate% is 6.2% for 2018.

Ensure that the "Limit" on the "FICA (Employee)" line is set to 99,999 as shown below. (NOTE: the actual 2018 FICA wage limit is now $128,400, but AMS payroll parameter entry allows a maximum of $99,999. For most remaining AMS users, this should not cause a problem. If you have employees earning in excess of $100,000 annually, you must either work around the issue manually or consider switching to an updated accounting/payroll system such as our Windows Accounting Made Simple.)

FUTA limit for 2018 is unchanged at $7,000. SUTA limit (or "Taxable Wage Base") is different for every state, and is shown on the SUTA rate notification you received from your state, as is your 2018 SUTA percentage rate. Note that values for columns other than "Limit" may be different in your data.



2 - Update your Federal Tax Tables

On the Payroll Utilities menu, run the "Federal Tax Tables" option and update the "Credit per withholding allowance" and all Single/Married/Rate values as shown below. NOTE: IRS Notice 1036 and IRS Publication 15 (Circular E) discuss special handling of "nonresident alien" workers, which AMS is not capable of doing. Since AMS has a limited number of wage bracket slots, the federal tax table shown below also excludes the highest wage brackets (over $503,700 per year).



3 - Ensure that no employees are marked as eligible for Earned Income Credit

Advance Earned Income Credit (EIC) is no longer allowed as of 2011 (this was a tax credit provided for low income employees with dependent children). The easiest way to handle this is to select each employee in the Enter Employees option, press F4 for Tax Setup, set "EIC Type" to "None", and save the employee record. (A problem in the Earned Income Credit Tables entry screen prevents you from easily zeroing all values in that table.)



We invite all interested users to switch to our Windows Accounting Made Simple (WAMS) at a discounted price!

For a limited time, we offer all AMS users the option of purchasing our Windows Accounting Made Simple (WAMS) program at a significant discount.

  • FULL system $1,200 (save $400, annual license $535)
  • Payroll + Accounts Payable $800 (save $325, annual license $375)
  • Payroll module only $600 (save $200, annual license $270)
Purchase of the program (at the discounted price shown in red above) provides you with a one-year license and full customer support for the first year. Each year after the first, you must renew your program license for another year at the cost specified above. You have the option of also purchasing FULL customer support for second and subsequent years at $350 with high-speed internet ($400 without). With high-speed internet, you can connect to us at any time for additional help with the program. We can then run your computer to show you how things are done or to help resolve any questions you might have.


Archived AMS Payroll Tax Changes