Frequently Asked Questions
Browse through our frequently asked payroll questions for answers on our systems, taxes, year-end checklists, and more! If answers to your questions are not here, please reach out (no life questions please)!
End of Year
2022 Year End Deadlines
W2 Explanation of your W2
W-2 Box Descriptions for Employees
It’s important for every employee to understand their W-2. Below you’ll see information to help you understand the W-2.
If you have specific questions, please see the IRS Instructions for Forms W-2 (2020) or check with your employer.
Journey Payroll & HR produces your W-2 on your employer’s behalf utilizing the information provided to us. If you have specific questions regarding amounts on your W-2, please contact your employer or CPA. If necessary, your employer will contact Journey on your behalf. Journey is not permitted to modify W-2 information without your employer’s consent or instruction. Discuss any discrepancies with your employer and have them contact Journey regarding the issue rather than reaching out to us directly. This is the most efficient way to get your issue resolved.
A – EMPLOYEE’S SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER (SSN)
Double-check and confirm your W-2 shows your correct social security number.
B – EMPLOYER IDENTIFICATION NUMBER (EIN)
This is your employer’s unique tax identification number. What a SSN is to a person, an EIN is to a business.
C – EMPLOYER’S NAME, ADDRESS, & ZIP CODE
This identifies the name and legal address of your employer.
D – CONTROL NUMBER
This is an optional field for employer use.
E/F – EMPLOYEE’S NAME, SUFFIX, ADDRESS, & ZIP CODE
This identifies your full name as shown on your Social Security card and mailing address. Please confirm this is printed correctly.
1 – WAGES, TIPS, OTHER COMPENSATION
This is the total of your total federal taxable wages, tips, and other compensation and taxable fringe benefits.
This can include, wages, bonuses, prizes, awards, back pay, executive life insurance, taxable employee business expense reimbursements, commissions, severance, dismissal pay, vacation pay, non-cash fringe benefits, and/or non-qualified moving expenses.
This does not include 401(k), 403(b) employee contributions, federal exempt wages, medical contributions, health care and dependent care contributions, and/or other pre-tax contributions.
2 – FEDERAL INCOME TAX WITHHELD
This is the amount withheld for federal income taxes throughout the year from your paycheck. How you fill our Form-W4 and how much you are paid, determines how much tax is withheld. If you feel your withholdings are not accurate, please consult with a CPA.
3 – SOCIAL SECURITY WAGES
This is the total amount of wages subject to the Social Security tax. For 2017, you can be taxed up $127,200. Any income beyond that gross pay will not be taxed social security.
4 – SOCIAL SECURITY TAX WITHHELD
This is the amount of Social Security taxes withheld from your paycheck. For 2018, the Social Security tax is 6.2% of your income, which means the amount should equal to 6.2% of the wages listed in Box 3. The highest figure that can be shown in Box 4 is $7,886.40 ($127,200 maximum wage base times 6.2%).
5 – MEDICARE WAGES & TIPS
This is the total wages, tips, and other compensation subject to Medicare taxes. Medicare generally doesn’t include any pre-tax deductions and will include most taxable benefits. There is no cap for Medicare taxes, means the figure in Box 5 may be the largest number on your Form W-2.
6 – MEDICARE TAX WITHHELD
This is the amount of taxes withheld from your paycheck for the Medicare tax. In 2018, the Medicare tax has a flat rate of 1.45% of your total Medicare wages listed in Box 5. Unlike Social Security, where there’s a max that you can be taxed on, Medicare can have an additional tax when you reach a higher income. Please see your CPA if this affects your household.
7 – SOCIAL SECURITY TIPS
This is the amount of tip income you reported to your employer.
8 – ALLOCATED TIPS
If you work for a food or beverage establishment, this box reports any tip income allocated to you by your employer. This amount is not included in Boxes 1, 3, 5, or 7.
9 – VERIFICATION CODE
If you are e-filing and if there is a code in this box, enter it when
prompted. Valid characters are the letters A-F and
the digits 0-9. This code assists the IRS in validating the W-2 data submitted
with your return. The code is not entered on paper-filed returns.
10 – DEPENDENT CARE BENEFITS
This is the total amount of any dependent care benefits paid to you or incurred on your behalf by your employer. Amounts less than $5,000 are non-taxable benefits, and any amount more than $5,000 is reported as taxable wages in Boxes 1, 3, and 5.
This would possibly include employer-provided day care costs, employer reimbursed day care costs, or benefits from the pre-tax contributions made by the employee under a section 125 dependent care flexible spending account.
11 – NON-QUALIFIED PLANS
This is the amount distributed to you from non-governmental section 457(b) plan or non-qualified deferred compensation plans (taxable amount is located in Box 1). Please note that this is not the amounts contributed by you (that is in Box 12).
12 – DEFERRED COMPENSATION & OTHER COMPENSATION
Box 12 will report a code followed with an amount. Some of these codes have already been reported elsewhere on the W2, though others have not been reported on your W-2. Here are the codes for Box 12:
Code A – Uncollected Social Security or RRTA tax on tips.
Code B – Uncollected Medicare tax on tips.
Code C – Taxable benefit of group term-life insurance over $50,000. Already included as part of your taxable wages in Boxes 1, 3 (up to the Social Security wage base), and 5.
Code D – Non-taxable elective salary deferrals to a 401(k) or SIMPLE 401(k) retirement plan.
Code E – Non-taxable elective salary deferrals to a 403(b) retirement plan.
Code F – Non-taxable elective salary deferrals to a 408(k)(6) SEP retirement plan.
Code G – Non-taxable elective salary deferrals and non-elective employer contributions to any governmental or non-governmental section 457(b) retirement plan.
Code H – Non-taxable elective salary deferrals to a 501(c)(18)(D) tax-exempt plan. This amount is included in Box 1 wages. You will deduct this amount on your Form 1040.
Code J – Non-taxable sick pay. This amount is not included in taxable wages in Boxes 1, 3, or 5.
Code K – Excise tax (equal to 20%) on excess “golden parachute” payments. See form 1040 instructions.
Code L – Non-taxable reimbursements for employee business expense reimbursements.
Code M – Uncollected Social Security or RRTA tax on taxable group term life insurance over $50,000 for former employees.
Code N – Uncollected Medicare tax on taxable group term life insurance over $50,000 for former employees.
Code P – Excludable moving expense reimbursements paid directly to a member of the U.S. Armed Forces (not included in box 1, 3, or 5)
Code Q – Non-taxable combat pay. See instructions for form 1040 for details on reporting.
Code R – Employer contributions to an Archer Medical Savings Account. Report on Form 8853.
Code S – Non-taxable salary reduction contributions under a 408(p) SIMPLE retirement plan.
Code T – Employer-paid adoption benefits. This amount is not included in Box 1 wages. Complete form 8839.
Code V – Income from the exercise of non-statutory stock options. This amount is already included as taxable income in Boxes 1, 3 (up to the Social Security wage base), and 5.
Code W – Employer contributions to your Health Savings Account. Employer contributions, including amounts the employee elected to contribute using a section 125 (cafeteria) plan, to your Health Savings Account. Report on Form 8889, Health Savings Accounts.
Code Y – Salary deferrals under 409A non-qualified deferred compensation plan.
Code Z – Income received under 409A non-qualified deferred compensation plan. This amount is already included in taxable wages in Box 1, and is subject to additional tax. See Form 1040 for instructions.
Code AA – After-tax contributions to a Roth 401(k) retirement plan.
Code BB – After-tax contributions to a Roth 403(b) retirement plan.
Code DD – The cost of non-taxable health insurance provided through your employer. The amount reported with Code DD is not taxable.
Code EE – After-tax contributions to a Roth 457(b) retirement plan offered by government employers.
Code FF – Permitted benefits under a qualified small employer health reimbursement arrangement.
Code GG – Income from qualified equity grants under section 83(i).
Code HH – Aggregate deferrals under section 83(i) elections as of the close of the calendar year.
13 – CHECKBOXES
There are three checkboxes in Box 13. Boxes will be checked if any of these situations apply to you as an employee.
Statutory employees are subject to FICA (Social Security and Medicare tax), but not federal income tax. What classifies as a Statutory Employee? Click here to learn more. (Links to a new page about this)
Retirement Plan box is checked if you are eligible to participate in your employer’s retirement plan. This plan could be a 401(k) plan, 403(b) plan, SEP-IRA, SIMPLE IRA, or other type of pension plan.
Third-Party Sick Pay would be checked if you received sick pay under a third-party policy from an insurance company. Receiving sick pay directly from your employer in your paycheck, does not apply here.
14 – OTHER
This box may contain information such as: travel reimbursement, taxable relocation expenses, union dues withheld, uniform payment deductions, non-excludable moving expenses, auto allowance, educational assistance payments, and/or Social club membership.
15 – STATE CODE & EMPLOYER’S STATE ID NUMBER
This reports your employer’s state and state tax identification number where state withholding was required. Your employer may be multiple lines of information in Box 15.
16 – STATE WAGES, TIPS, ETC.
Box 16 on your W2 reports the amount of taxable wages earned in that specific state. You may have multiple lines of information in Box 16 if you worked in multiple states.
17 – STATE INCOME TAX
This is the total amount of state income taxes that were withheld from your paycheck for the wages reported in Box 16.
18 – LOCAL WAGES, TIPS, ETC.
Many local regions do not require you to report wages, so this is often blank. If you are in a local region where they require to report the total wages subject to the local, city, or other state income taxes, if will be located in Box 18.
19 – LOCAL INCOME TAX
This is the total local, city, or other state income taxes withheld from your paycheck.
20 – LOCALITY
Box 20 provides a brief description of the local, city, or other state tax being paid, if there is a local tax needed to report.
Journey is here to ensure payroll taxes are paid accurately and on time. Journey does not provide tax advice for your specific W2, and does not advise on filling out your specific W4. If you have specific questions, please ask a local CPA or Accountant.
End of Year Checklist
1. If an employee has not clocked in for an entire pay period, their time card will not appear in the list of time cards to approve.
2. To add a timesheet for the missing employee, click the “Add Timesheet” link in the yellow “Timesheet” section.
3. A window will appear, giving you the option to add a timesheet for any employees that do not already have one.
4. Check the box for the employee you need to add a timesheet for, and click “Add timesheet” for the timesheet to populate.
5. To enter time into the new timesheet, Click “View” on the newly created sheet, and add hours in as normal.
How do I request a password?
If you have added your cell phone number to your HUB account, simply click Forgot Access Code/Password and a new password will be sent to you in a text message. You must do this BEFORE the system locks you out; after 3 failed attempts it will lock you out of logging in, so if you are unsure please use the Forgot Password option before this happens.
If you have not added your cell phone number into HUB, contact your employer to have them reset your access code.
If your employer is unable to assist you, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of the company you work for and your name. It is important to include your company name, as that is how we will be able to find you in the system and assist you.
How do I login to my Journey HUB account?
Go to our website www.journeypayroll.com > Client Login > Journey HUB > Sign In. If your password is not working and you’ve added your cell phone number, you can click Forgot access code / password and it will text you a new password. You must do this BEFORE the system locks you out; after 3 failed attempts it will lock you out of logging in, so if you are unsure of your password, please use Forgot Password before this happens.
I am purchasing a house and need employment verification. Who provides the employment verification?
Your employer will need to do the employment verification. Journey has employee information provided by your employer, and therefore does not have the authority to verify employment.
I am applying for an apartment/rental and they require wage verification. Where can I find that information?
Pay stubs are stored within your Journey HUB account for 7 years. Your 6 most recent pay stubs will show on the Home screen of your HUB account. You can find older paystubs in the “History” tab of your HUB account. Typically people will use the last 3 months of pay stubs for wage verification.
The link to my pay stubs has expired. How do I access my paystubs, W2's, and employee documents?
Oops! Double check the expiration date! Links do not expire for 5 years. If you have entered a wrong password the link may be frozen. To login, go to our website www.journeypayroll.com > Login > Employee > Journey HUB > Enter your credentials. If your password is not working and you’ve added your cell phone number, you can click Forgot access code / password and it will text you a new password.
Can I have access to my clients' Information?
As the accountant, adviser, or key professional in another capacity, you can access your client’s information with their authorization. Journey does not provide any client information to anyone without the client’s written permission. If you would like access to your client’s reports and payroll information, please contact your Journey payroll specialist or shareholder, or contact us here.
Can Journey's payroll service integrate with my clients GL and/or 401(k) Plan?
Journey looks to incorporate as many providers as possible to create integrations and single sign-on options. If those are not available (due to the other 3rd party platform), Journey will go the extra mile to produce a solution that works for you. Journey’s goal is to help ease the stress of our clients, and provide them with the best tools and support possible.
General Ledger Integration: Currently Journey can create an import file that will sync with your QuickBooks Pro account (desktop version), as well as most other General Ledger platforms.
401k Retirement Plan Integration: Currently Journey works with DRS401k and PAI401k in a streamlined solution for our clients. We chose to work with these providers because of their service and ability to work with Journey on the back-end so you don’t need to stress about providing reports or sending off a check.
Please Note: Journey is always open to creating an integration with new companies that are not listed above, or here: http://188.8.131.52/our-integration/. If you are a provider of proprietary software and would like to discuss creating a solution with our platforms working together, please reach out to a Journey Shareholder at your local office (Contact Us).
Can we receive Journey's Labor Law posters and yearly Fast Facts to provide to my clients?
Providing labor law posters to our clients every year is a small example of how Journey looks to stand out differently. We look to provide our clients with both Federal and State Labor Law Posters, as well as yearly Fast Facts. Journey will provide our partners with as many of these offerings as they need to ensure they are taking care of this important HR need.
Do I have one point of contact, just like Journey's payroll clients?
Providing our clients with one point of contact that truly sticks with them over a long period is important to Journey Payroll & HR. This personal touch is what Journey stands for, and what separates us from others in the Payroll and HR industry. For someone that has mutual clients with Journey, we will provide them with someone from the leadership team of our local office.
If you currently do not know who your personal contact is, please contact your local office to ensure you are receiving this important personal touch.
How can Journey and I partner so it's a win for my clients and myself?
Journey Payroll & HR has multiple ways to create a partnership with you and will customize the partnership to fit the liking of you, your clients, and Journey. The Payroll and HR offerings Journey provides can be white labeled or completely on the back-end of your name, and billing can be direct with the client or with you. There are many more options Journey can offer to create a solution that works well for all parties. Through Journey’s Payroll and HR partnership platform, you will have the opportunity to help support your clients by working closely with our solutions, team, and your own direct personal point of contact. This partnership will also contribute to great retention and a new revenue stream for your business.
What is Per Diem Pay?
Per diem means “for each day” and is an optional allowance you can provide for traveling employees. It is a daily allowance you can provide to cover travel-related expenses, such as hotel/lodging, meals, and other applicable costs. Which items are covered in a per diem pay amount is set at the employer’s discretion and some choose to limit this to cover meals and incidental expenses only.
Although per diem pay is optional, it may encourage your employees to travel for work more if they know they are not going to incur the costs for said travel. Per diem amounts cannot be used to cover travel costs (such as air) or mileage reimbursements; it is strictly for other expenses that may occur during the travel. Lodging and meals are the most common expense added to per diem allowances.
The per diem amount can be given to the employee before or after their travel, and can be used as a substitute for an expense report. Whereas an expense report is calculated and reimbursed to the employee after their trip, per diem pay is a set amount for each day and their spending does not typically have to be approved. However, as with an expense report, employees do need to still keep track of their expenses for their per diem pay.
I haven't received my direct deposit. What do I do?
First, check with your employer to see if they may have a live check for you. If they do not and they think you should have received a Direct Deposit, check with your bank for further information. If necessary, your employer will contact Journey on your behalf.
I haven't received my check in the mail. How do I get a new one?
First check with your employer to see if they may have it, or if it has been returned to their address. They may be able to provide additional information about your check, or contact Journey if necessary.
Why didn't I get paid?
Begin by contacting your employer. They may have your paycheck or may be able to provide you with further information. If you have Direct Deposit and have not received your deposit, contact your employer first; if they do not have additional information, the next step would be to contact your bank. If needed, your employer will contact Journey for further inquiries or to request tracking of your check.
When is my Payroll due?
Your payroll is due by 1:00pm 2 business days prior to your check date. You can also view your input date in the “Admin” tab of your HUB account. You will see your pay period start and end dates, your payroll input date, and the check date in the blue box.
I have a workers' comp audit and I need reports. Where do I get those?
Please email your Payroll Specialist at Journey with the requested documents. Please allow up to a 72-hour turnaround.
What is the timeframe for requesting/receiving payroll reports?
Payroll reports are stored within your Journey HUB account for 7 years. Please allow up to a 72-hour turnaround for past payroll reports.
Tax and Other Facts
How soon do I need to pay a terminated employee?
Most states have their own requirements for paying a terminated employee and there are typically different requirements based on if the employee was fired or if the employee quit. Please click here to see the details for your state.
How much can I put into my 401(k)?
The contribution limit for 401(k) & 403(b) plans is $18,500 for 2018. The catch-up contribution limit for 401(k) 403(b) plans for those that are 50 and older is $6,000 for 2018.
What is Minimum Wage?
The federal minimum wage is $7.25, though most states have their own rate that supersedes this federal rate. In instances when the state minimum wage is less than the federal minimum wage, employers are required to follow the federal minimum wage. Please click here to see the details for your state.
What is the Mileage reimbursement rate?
For the final 6 months of 2022, the standard mileage rate for business travel will be 62.5 cents per mile, up 4 cents from the rate effective at the start of the year. The new rate for deductible medical or moving expenses (available for active-duty members of the military) will be 22 cents for the remainder of 2022, up 4 cents from the rate effective at the start of 2022. These new rates become effective July 1, 2022. The IRS provided legal guidance on the new rates in Announcement 2022-13, issued today.
What is WOTC?
WOTC is the Work Opportunity Tax Credit, a tax credit program that benefits employers who hire individuals from specific eligible target groups. Eligible target groups face barriers to employment, therefore if you employ a qualifying individual from one of these groups, you may meet the requirements to receive the tax credit.
WOTC Target Groups
- Long-Term or Short-Term Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Recipient
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Recipient
- Designated Community Resident
- Rural Renewal Counties or Empowerment Zones
- Vocational Rehabilitation Referral
- Supplemental Security Income Recipient
- Summer Youth Employee
For descriptions and details on who is eligible, refer to the US Department of Labor’s Employer’s Guide to the Work Opportunity Tax Credit.