Designed as an annual reporting system, 1099 Express provides support for producing and filing all 1099 variations, plus forms 1098, 1096, 5498, W-2G, and the new IRS forms 1099-K, 3921 and 3922 including recipient copies and electronic filing capabilities for state and federal entities. The vendor also offers a service bureau option through which they can handle electronic filing as well as printing and mailing of all recipient forms and IRS TIN/Name matching services. Additional programs from the vendor include specialty systems for W-2 and 1042 filing.
Basic System Functions
1099 Express opens with a blank grid that resembles an Excel spreadsheet view and icon and menu-based navigation bars, while tabs offer access to specific form types. The system can be used to support any number of payers/employers and virtually any number of W-2, 1099 or other recipients, but its client/employer selection screens are limited in search and filtering options. Within a company’s records, however, the program provides a great overview of employees, contractors and other form recipients associated with the business entity, with a single screen overview of all recipients of a particular type of form. Users can filter to different form types using the tabbed menu. Data entry by keyboard is performed on form replicas. Data importing is performed by copying and pasting into a unique Excel Aware grid. This popular feature makes it easy to copy and paste data in any column order into the system, where a validation function ensures the accuracy and completeness of transferred data.
The 1099 Express system includes a network license that allows the program to be accessed and worked in by any number of staff at the same time. The system is locally installed and is not available as a SaaS model, although it does offer secure upload of data if using the vendor’s service bureau option and has multiple user license options. The separate W-2 Express program is geared toward data reporting and is not intended as an after-the-fact payroll system, since it computes FICA but does not compute state income taxes. During data entry, the Excel copy-paste feature provides quick batch entry of data for multiple recipients. Finalized new annual versions of the program are generally available by late October. 4.75
1099 Express and W-2 Express support the combined federal/state filing program through which the filer only remits to the IRS and they forward to involved states. This e-filing option is free, but the program does not offer built-in electronic filing capabilities for states that do not participate in combined filing. SSA reporting is made through the agency’s BSO filing system. It includes all 1099 series forms, including all 1098 and 5498, W-2, W-3 and form W-2G as well as the new IRS forms 1099-K, 3921 and 3922. Recipient copies of form 1099 can also be generated into an encrypted and password-protected emailable PDF file. 1099 Express also supports the new IRS security feature called “TIN Masking” or “Truncation,” where the IRS allows the recipient copies to display the social security number as XXX-XX-1234.
The program does not offer quarterly withholding compliance for federal or state. Forms can be printed to plain paper, and envelopes and sealed forms are available through a third-party vendor. No mail-merge functions are specifically included, although the Excel copy-paste tool includes address and contact information, allowing for merging of data through that method. The programs use Excel for managerial reporting, with good customization and tools and options for summaries, recipient lists and an audit trail. 1099 Express and W-2 Express do not include a built-in invoicing utility. Outsourced form printing and reporting is available as a service by the vendor. 4
One of the most valuable features in 1099 Express and W-2 Express is the ability to copy and paste columns from Excel, with the system automatically rearranging the column order to match the system’s grid structure. This feature can handle as many as 50,000 payee records in less than a second, making it fast to move data into the program from spreadsheets. Data can also be imported using a print capture method from QuickBooks, Peachtree and other accounting and payroll systems.
Prior-year data can be moved into a new year with a fairly simple copy function. The 1099 Express and W-2 systems do not offer direct integration with payroll applications, although the print capture function and ability to import and copy and paste from Excel allows transfer of data from most applications. Data and reports can be output to Excel and PDF, which enables a two-step import process to most related professional programs. No portals are offered for client or recipient use, although a feature does allow for creating W-2s into an encrypted PDF format for emailing. 4.5
Both systems support all modern versions of Microsoft Windows and include a traditional help index, along with instructions for e-filing, deadlines and other processes. Online support options are somewhat limited, but include FAQs and downloadable program updates, which are included for the filing year to which the user is subscribed. 1099 Express software automatically notifies the user when a program update or a new year program is available. If the user allows, the updated program is automatically downloaded and installed. Live support is included in program pricing. 4.5
Summary & Pricing
The 1099 Express and W-2 Express systems from 1099 Express Inc. provide simplified management and reporting for entities with virtually any number of wage or other income recipients. The systems provide tools for managing multiple employers and filing electronically, along with a feature for easily moving large sets of data from Excel spreadsheets. This is not an after-the-fact payroll system and, as such, includes only annual reporting functions with no quarterly reporting. Pricing for 1099 Express is $199 for a new two-user license, with renewals costing $99. W-2 Express costs $149 for a two-user license and $99 for renewal.
2010 Overall Rating 4.5