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Elements Of The Accounting System: Payroll If you've got employees, you've got to get a handle on payroll.

Payroll accounting can be quite a challenge for the new businessowner. There are many federal and state laws regulating what youhave to track related to payroll. Failure to do so could result inheavy fines-or worse.

Many small-business owners use outside payroll services. Thesecompanies guarantee compliance with all applicable laws. This keepsthe small-business owner out of trouble with the law and savesvaluable time that can be devoted to something else in thebusiness.

However, if you choose to do your own payroll, it is highlyrecommended that you purchase an automated payroll system. Even ifthe rest of your books are done manually, an automated payrollsystem will save valuable time and help considerably withcompliance. There's not a lot of margin for error when dealingwith the federal government!

Excerpted from Start Your Own Business: The Only Start-UpBook You'll Ever Need, by Rieva Lesonsky and the Staff ofEntrepreneur Magazine, © 1998 Entrepreneur Press

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