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Importing payer/employer data from a CSV file
Importing payer/employer data from a CSV file

If you used another tax program last year, fear not! Here’s how to import payer data with a comma-separated values (CSV) file.

Adams Tax Forms avatar
Written by Adams Tax Forms
Updated over a week ago

No need to start over if you’re new to Adams® Tax Forms Helper® Online. With some simple advice, we’ll help you import your existing data from any CSV compatible software.

Step 1. Download our Adams Tax CSV templates

These helpful Excel templates are available for each form type (1099-MISC, 1099-NEC, W-2 and more).

To find the templates, go to “Import Data” in the upper right hand corner of your screen.

Choose the bright blue “Import a CSV” button to open the Import a CSV menu.

From the CSV Import page, choose the template you need from the links for each form type

You can also go directly to the type of form you’d like to import and click the “Import” button at the bottom of the page.

Templates will download automatically. If the download doesn't start, check to ensure your browser is set to allow pop-ups and file downloads.

Brightly colored headers show you all the information you’ll need to have in your functioning .CSV file. Be careful not to delete any of these columns for a successful upload.

This year, you’ll find an explanation row (in gray) that spells out precisely what type of data you need to enter in each cell. Do not alter any of the first 4 rows.

Step 2. Prep your data files

Starting in row 5, you can type directly into the cells in your CSV template or you can copy and paste from another data file.

You must fill in any cells that have a bold title in order for the upload to work.

Once you've input your data, proof your spreadsheet for a few common formatting issues.

  • Check for forbidden characters or typos
    The biggest cause of failed imports by far are extra commas or typos in your data set. Be careful to follow the guidance in the gray instruction row to determine whether hyphens, commas or other characters are allowed.

  • Be certain to keep ALL empty columns
    Again, even if you don’t have data for some of the columns in our CSV template, just leave the cells blank—don’t delete them! Tax Forms Helper Online will recognize empty or -0- values and smoothly import your data.

Tip: You'll see this error message when you try to import a file with deleted columns or forbidden characters.

Step 3. Save your new data files as a .CSV

Next, choose “File” > “Save As” and save your Excel template as a .CSV file. (Don't forget to change the file type! You can't import .exe files into Tax Forms Helper Online.)

Choose a location to save your new CSV files to and name your file. DO NOT reopen the file after saving it as a .CSV or Excel will make "helpful" changes like deleting the first zero in a zip code.

Step 4. Import your data into Tax Forms Helper Online

Return to the CSV Import Page and find your form type. You can choose to import the names, ID numbers, and addresses WITH or WITHOUT the previous year’s financial data.

  • Use the radio buttons to select whether you’d like to import financial info.

  • Select “Choose File” to find your data document. Click “Proceed” to create your CSV file and return to the Tax Forms Helper home page.

  • You can import all of your files at one time. Just select the file location for each file type and click Proceed once.

  • You’ll get a notification indicating the number of records imported.

  • You can now view, edit, or delete the imported records in Adams Tax Forms Helper Online.

Step 5. Repeat

Now that you’ve got the hang of it, you can create CSV files for your 1099-NEC, 1099-DIV, 1099-INT, 1099-R, 1099-S, 1098, 1098-T and W2 forms.

To add another CSV file click CSV Import again and repeat the process until all of your form data is imported.

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