By Lisa Calick, Carolyn Hall, Floriana Allen, and Laura Melville

The end of the year can be busy for many companies.  While December brings holiday parties and end-of-year celebrations, business owners should be mindful to make sure their HR and payroll departments are on top of timely actions in order to ensure a smooth transition into the New Year.  This checklist will help you get a jumpstart on your year-end planning.

Human Resources

  • Review your employees’ data to make sure you have accurate and updated information, including contact information, marital status and banking information for direct deposit.
  • Prepare for ACA reporting (1095-C should be provided to employees by January 31, 1095-C and 1094-C filed to IRS by April 2), if applicable.
  • If relevant, finalize open enrollment details and process any renewal plan changes.
  • Ensure proper carryover and/or pay out of accrued time off balances, as per company policy (Note:  NJ employers are now subject to required paid sick leave regulations).
  • For NY employers, be sure you are in compliance with the new sexual harassment regulations.
  • Review IRS limits for flexible spending accounts and 401k plans.  If your company has a flexible spending account, remind your employees to spend any balances they may lose at the end of 2018.
  • Establish your 2019 holiday calendar for office closings.
  • This is a great time to review all of your policies and handbooks to ensure compliance with practices and updated laws.  Update your workplace posters.


  • Update employee contact information such as Social Security number, employee name and address to avoid errors and penalties.
  • Review your employees’ salary information, particularly if changes are made effective January 1.
  • Update your payroll for any state minimum wage changes.
  • Prepare for the first payroll of New Year – be aware of any employee and/or employer federal or state rate changes effective January 1.
  • Prepare W-2s and 1099 forms (distribute to employees and file to IRS by January 31).  It is important to make sure your employees are properly classified, and that you have a W-9 form for your independent contractors.
  • In addition to federal and state quarterly filings, prepare annual federal form 940 and if applicable federal Form 944 (file to IRS by January 31).
  • Include in W-2s any third-party sick pay and any other applicable adjustments to W-2s.

While different companies may have their own individualized policies and practices, being proactive with these tasks provides a good place to start in order to have a more manageable year end process.

To learn more about how Wiss can prepare your business for year end, visit our Advisory Services page.


Reach out to a Wiss team member for more information or assistance.

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