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What is QuickBooks Error PS038 & How to Resolve It?

QuickBooks Error PS038

QuickBooks error PS038 can scare a user trying to run their payroll operations or send paychecks online. Let this blog be a guide to get you out of the issue seamlessly and quickly.

Running payroll requires the most recent updates of payroll tax tables installed in QuickBooks Desktop. While doing so, you might get an error message that reads, “You’ve retrieved the latest payroll update and validated your Payroll subscription. We strongly recommend that you go online again before mm/dd/yyyy. [PS038]”. It is a common error that several users face while updating or processing paychecks in QuickBooks.

Error code PS038 was a bug in the QuickBooks application that got fixed with the launch of QuickBooks 2018. Still, recently several users have reported getting the same error, and it indicates that PS038 has made a come back in the QuickBooks application. With this article, we will analyze the reasons for the occurrence of QuickBooks payroll update error PS038 and quick solutions that can be implemented to resolve it.

Got your online paycheck stuck and QuickBooks payroll error PS038 flashing on the screen? Fret not and dial +1- 855 738 2784 to reach QuickBooks experts and receive professional help

What is QuickBooks Payroll Update Error PS038?

QuickBooks payroll error PS038 appears when a user tries to send paychecks online, and the paychecks are stuck as “Online to send.” Payroll cannot be processed if there are paychecks stuck in the system, and thus resolving the error becomes the need of the hour.

Although basic troubleshooting can fix QuickBooks error code PS038, an employee’s payroll data is a critical piece of information for a business. Thus, it is suggested to pay close attention to the troubleshooting procedure to avoid data loss. Before troubleshooting, you can also back up your QuickBooks data to safeguard it against damage and corruption.

How to Resolve QuickBooks Error PS038?

If the reasons for the presence of the PS038 error in QuickBooks Desktop are clear, let’s move forward with effective solutions to rectify the issue. However, before doing so, consider the following crucial points:


  1. If you are using an older version of QuickBooks, you first need to update it to 2019 or a later version.
  2. Then make sure to back up your company file and payroll data before troubleshooting the PS038 error in QuickBooks.
  3. Your QuickBooks Desktop application must be having the latest updates of the payroll tax table installed.

Steps to Rectify QuickBooks PS038 Update Error:

If PS038 in QuickBooks Desktop can be fixed by performing various troubleshooting steps mentioned below in this article. Then follow the steps in the given sequence for a quick resolution.

Update your QuickBooks application:

You must ensure that the QuickBooks version you use is the latest and up-to-date to resolve payroll error PS038. The steps involved in updating QuickBooks include:

  1. First of all launch the QB application and navigate to the Help menu.
  2. Here, choose the Update QuickBooks Desktop button and hit Update Now at the top-right corner.
  3. Select Get Updates and after the download of the update finishes, close and reopen your application to verify the PS038 error QuickBooks Desktop.

After updating QuickBooks try Sending Payroll:

  • Click My Payroll Services under the Employees tab and then click Send Usage Data.QuickBooks My Payroll Services
  • If you can send data successfully, then update the payroll again.
  • If you are still getting the same error message, follow the steps given below or contact Payroll Helpline Number USA 1.855.738.2784.

Check and Find Paycheck Stuck as “Online to Send”:

  • Under the Edit tab, select Find and choose the Advanced.QuickBooks Find Option
  • Under the Choose Filter tab, look for the Filter list and select Detail Level.
  • Select Summary Only.
  • Under the Choose Filter tab, look for the Filter list and select Online Status.
  • From the drop-down list on the right-hand side, select Online to send.
  • Click the Find button to check all the unsent paychecks and PS038 error payroll

Run Verify and Rebuild Data tool:

  •  Make sure to take a backup before running the Rebuild Data tool.
  • Click the Rebuild Now button as shown in the screenshot.QuickBooks Verify Rebuild Results
  • After the rebuild process completes, you can see the status of stuck paychecks.
  • If rebuild cannot fix all the stuck paychecks and you can’t update Payroll due toPS038 QuickBooks Desktop.

Verify the Information on Paychecks Stuck in QuickBooks:

  1. Follow the steps from the “Check and Find Paycheck Stuck as Online to Send” section to get the list of all the paychecks that are stuck in QuickBooks.
  2. Now open the first paycheck from the list and click the Paycheck Detail option.
  3. Once you get the Review Paycheck window, go to the Earnings tab.
  4. Now look for the last item in the list and add it as a new item again.
  5. This will prompt QuickBooks to display a Net Pay Locked window where you need to click No to close it.
  6. You will need to choose the Rate Field for the item you have just added in the fourth step.
  7. Make sure there are no changes in the Net Pay and taxes and click OK.
  8. Click Yes if the Past Transactions message pops up.
  9. Hit the Save & Close option and click Yes when the Recording Transactions message appears.
  10. Re-open the paycheck and click the Paycheck Details button.
  11. Delete the item that was added in the fourth step.
  12. Once again, make sure there are no changes in the taxes and Net Pay and click OK.
  13. Finally, click Save & Close to save the changes.
  14. Follow the same instructions for each paycheck and check if the error is now resolved.

Carefully follow each step mentioned in the article to rectify QuickBooks error PS038, or you can contact us directly for help by dialing our Payroll Number +1- 855 738 2784.


Why am I facing QuickBooks PS038 payroll error?

You may be getting the QuickBooks payroll PS038 error due to the following reasons:

  1. You haven’t installed the latest payroll update.
  2. Your QuickBooks application is not up-to-date.
  3. If a damaged company file may result in a payroll PS038 error.
  4. This issue may arise while validating the payroll subscription and recovering the latest payroll QB updates.

How does the PS038 error affect your system?

When QuickBooks payroll PS038 error affects your system, you will experience the following:

  1. If your system’s performance will be degraded and the speed will slow down.
  2. It hinders payroll’s update process.
  3. You may get stuck or struggle with sending paychecks online.

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What is QuickBooks Error PS038 & How to Resolve It?
Article Name
What is QuickBooks Error PS038 & How to Resolve It?
QuickBooks Error PS038 is an error that appears when you try to update payroll or send payroll data to Intuit. Follow this guide and learn how to fix this issue in an instant.
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Accounting Helpline
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