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CCH Small Firm Services — Fixed Asset Manager for TaxWise & ATX

800-755-9473 (TaxWise); www.taxwise.com877-728-9776 (ATX);

From the Dec. 2007 Review of
Fixed Asset Systems

Since CCH acquired TaxWise and ATX last year and started its Small Firm Services
division, both of the primarily tax-oriented systems have benefitted from the
addition of several general accounting programs and now include write-up, trial
balance, payroll, document management and the new fixed asset management modules.
As with the other accounting programs mentioned, the TaxWise Fixed Asset Manager
and ATX Fixed Asset Manager systems are generally identical but are each designed
to integrate with their family of tax preparation programs. What has resulted
then, are full suites of products for the smaller professional practice, providing
software and other options for virtually all components of accounting and tax
services, along with new technologies like Scan & Fill, which can greatly
increase productivity.

With versions available for both tax systems, the Fixed Asset Manager program
is designed to automate the asset depreciation process, with support for virtually
any number of clients and assets per client, with multiple books per item. The
system supports all traditional asset types and depreciation methods, and its
reporting options provide printable Forms 4562, 4797 and 6252. It is primarily
intended as an add-on to either of the tax systems, but can be used as a stand-alone
program, as well. Fixed Asset Manager costs $295, with renewals priced at $119.

Navigation/Ease-of-Use – 4.5 Stars
The TaxWise and ATX Fixed Asset Manager system opens within an interface that
is designed similarly to the tax package for which it is designed, with client
lists very quickly accessible and providing basic sorting options. The system’s
client asset list is well organized, providing numerous sort options and basic
information overviews that include current year depreciation. Detailed asset
information screens provide simple data entry that includes a selection list
for asset type, which offers more than 50 classifications, including Indian
farm and non-farm, regular farm, and government entities. Selection lists are
also available for asset group, depreciation method, convention, amortization
code section and Auto/Listed property type. Tabs provide quick access to overviews
and data entry for Depreciation and Section 179 data, Auto/Listed, Sale/Exchange/Disposition/Asset
History and Additional Information. Additional function buttons at the bottom
of the screen give quick access to the Asset List, the add/edit asset view,
a reports viewer and other tasks. The system displays automatically calculated
books for Federal, State, AMT and Book all side-by-side, with calculations occurring
automatically as data is changed. Data entry is intuitive and the interface
is user-friendly with hot-key shortcuts for common tasks, although assets cannot
be copied or used as templates.

Management Features – 4 Stars
As noted, the Fixed Asset Manager system is designed for tax-oriented practices
using either TaxWise or ATX, and so it is geared toward large client bases with
moderate asset requirements. The program allows the four primary books per asset
(Federal, AMT, State and Book), with automatic calculation of depreciation method,
recovery period, and current and next year’s projected depreciation, in
addition to supporting multiple conventions. Methods include MACRS, ACRS, Amortization,
Sum-of-the-Years’ Digits, Listed Auto, Straight-Line, Units of Production
and Declining Balance, as well as the new Section 179 bonus depreciation limits.

Fixed Asset Manager greatly simplifies asset transactions and other events,
with all such activities easily performed from the Sale/Exchange/Disposition
screen, which provides check boxes for selecting property code and other asset
data. Other life events supported by Fixed Asset Manager include trade-ins and
installment sales. The program provides location tracking and establishment
of asset groups, but does not enable mass asset edits or dispositions, nor can
users attach images or documents to asset records.

Integration – 4 Stars
Fixed Asset Manager is specially designed to integrate with either TaxWise or
ATX, and provides a simple export utility that places client asset data into
their corporate, partnership or individual tax return. The system does not offer
integration with other tax or accounting packages and imports only TaxWise or
ATX data. The program does, however, offer output to PDF, Excel and Word formats.

Reporting 4 Stars
Fixed Asset Manager offers a basic collection of summary and detail reports,
which includes options for each of the books as well as for asset groups and
disposals. Reports can be generated in Word or Excel formats for total customization,
and can also be saved to PDF for document management purposes. The system provides
printable versions of Forms 4562, 4797 and 6252.

Help/Support 4.5 Stars
A traditional Help utility provides general indexed reference materials, and
basic copy/paste/cut right-click functions are available for most data fields.
The ATX and TaxWise online support centers offer downloadable program updates,
FAQs, troubleshooting guides and access to online user communities. Technical
support is included with program pricing.

The Fixed Asset Manager system is a great addition to the ATX and TaxWise product
lines, providing a basic asset depreciation system to smaller practices. The
system offers good core functionality with a very user-friendly interface and
should easily handle the needs of most clients.

2007 Overall Rating: 4 Stars