This is a Blog post (a personal review of sorts, based on actual personal experience) about how to export data from QuickBooks Online to income tax software, and how to add GIFI codes to QuickBooks Online. The same methods can be used to add any codes you wish to QuickBooks Online. T2 is the annual income Tax return that a Corporation (in Canada) needs to file (online, not on paper) to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
(If your business is not incorporated, you likely do not need to use a T2 return. In that situation your company’s taxes might be included in your T1 personal income tax return. If in doubt ask CRA.)
If you are like me, you signed up for QuickBooks assuming that you would be able to easily export your data from QuickBooks to one of the popular income tax software packages, and that using QuickBooks Online would make doing your end of year (or end of 'fiscal year') taxes easy. Later you discovered that there is no such export feature in QuickBooks online, nor (it seems) any plans to ever add one. This situation made doing your company income tax return a surprise long and painful experience. You likely were not too happy about it. I know I was less that happy about the situation.
Or worse, perhaps you ended up having to pay an accountant one thousand or more dollars to do your T2 Tax return for you (if they are even willing to), and that likely did not brighten your day any...
It is not possible to ‘export’ your data from QuickBooks Online into any Canadian Tax software, for a T2 Tax Return, despite that being the reason most of us likely signed up for QuickBooks Online for in the first place!
So, a few years further along, I found something of a fix. Quickbooks Online does allow a user to ‘turn on’ account numbers. Do an online search for ‘Can QuickBooks online automatically assign account numbers?’ and you will find instructions on how to do that.
Once you do this, you can see their default account numbers against some of your accounts in QuickBooks Online. These default account numbers are not the GIFI account numbers that the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) uses. Luckily QuickBooks Online will allow you to edit these numbers, or delete them, and to add ones to accounts which do not have numbers.
Once you have turned on the account numbers, and manually entered a GIFI code to replace each existing one, and entered them for the remainder, then when you print the ‘Profit & Loss’ report, you will see the GIFI code in front of each line items on the report, so now you will know what line to enter it on (manually) in a tax program, for example Ufile T2. Same for the ‘Balance Sheet’. You will need to print both the ‘Balance Sheet’ and the ‘Profit & Loss’ Reports from within QuickBooks Online, in order to do your T2 Tax Return.
You can find a list of GIFI codes by doing an online search. The T2 Tax software you pick, will also show those GIFI codes beside the fields you may need to enter. Please note that you cannot use a GIFI code for more than one account in QuickBooks Online. In the situation where you need to use a GIFI code more than once, add a 01 (or a 02, 03, 04, etc) to the GIFI code after each instance, then manually add them up and enter the total into that GIFI code field in the T2 Tax software.
So with the help of adding GIFI codes above to QuickBooks Online, I was better able to successfully complete a T2 Tax Return to CRA, using Ufile T2, and efile it for about $180 verses over $1K if I had to hire an accountant to do it for me (if one was even willing to do it).
Generally speaking I like QuickBooks Online. I am not an accountant. There are a few features (I think they are bugs or issues but the powers that be at Intuit seem to have disagreed with me on each) that get on my nerves, and the above situation is one of them, but those few aside, it is not a perfect world, I like the program, and it is good value for money.
For people in other countries, using other account numbering systems, the same method might help you with your tax info export/import/data entry needs. No matter your country you may have taxes to complete.
I like Ufile T1 (Personal Income Tax - Canada) and Ufile T2 (Corporate Income Tax - Canada), and found both to be good value for money and I have used them both several years in a row.