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How to Fix QuickBooks Error PS036

QuickBooks is a powerful accounting tool, but like all software, it can occasionally run into issues. One such issue is QuickBooks Error PS036. This error can be a real headache for users, but don’t worry! In this article, we’ll dive into what QuickBooks Error PS036 is, the general causes behind it, and the troubleshooting steps to fix it. Let’s get started!

QuickBooks Error PS036

What is QuickBooks Error PS036?

QuickBooks Error PS036 typically appears when there is an issue with your payroll subscription. The error message might read something like, “You cannot validate your payroll subscription.” This can be frustrating, especially if you’re in the middle of running payroll for your employees.
This error can prevent you from updating your payroll service, which is crucial for maintaining compliance with the latest tax tables and laws. Understanding the underlying causes of this error is the first step toward resolving it effectively.

General Causes of QuickBooks Error PS036

There are several reasons why you might encounter QuickBooks Error PS036. Here are the most common causes:

  1. Invalid Service Key: If the payroll service key you are using is incorrect or outdated, QuickBooks might throw the PS036 error.
  2. Inactive Payroll Subscription: If your payroll subscription has expired or is inactive, this error can occur.
  3. Corrupted QuickBooks Data Files: Damaged or corrupted data files can interfere with the normal functioning of QuickBooks, leading to various errors, including PS036.
  4. Incorrect Company File PSID: If the PSID in your company file does not match the PSID in the QuickBooks Payroll Account, you might see this error.
  5. Windows User Account Control: Sometimes, the User Account Control (UAC) settings on your Windows operating system can interfere with QuickBooks operations.
  6. Incorrect EIN: An incorrect Employer Identification Number (EIN) can also cause this error.
  7. Multiple Payroll Subscriptions: Having multiple payroll subscriptions with the same EIN can confuse QuickBooks, resulting in the PS036 error.
  8. Outdated QuickBooks Software: Running an outdated version of QuickBooks can lead to compatibility issues, causing errors like PS036.

Troubleshooting Solutions to Fix QuickBooks Error PS036

Now that we understand the common causes of QuickBooks Error PS036, let’s look at how to fix it. Follow these troubleshooting steps carefully to resolve the issue.

Step 1: Verify Your Payroll Subscription Status

  1. Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  2. Go to the Employees menu.
  3. Select My Payroll Service and then Account/Billing Information.
  4. Sign in to your Intuit account to check the status of your payroll subscription.

If your subscription is inactive or expired, renew it to fix the error.

Step 2: Revalidate Your Payroll Service Key

  1. Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  2. Go to the Employees menu.
  3. Select My Payroll Service, then Manage Service Key.
  4. Select your payroll service key and click Edit.
  5. Re-enter your service key and click Next.
  6. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the validation process.

Step 3: Update QuickBooks Desktop

  1. Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  2. Go to the Help menu and select Update QuickBooks Desktop.
  3. Click on the Update Now tab.
  4. Select Get Updates to start the update process.
  5. Once the update is complete, restart QuickBooks.

Step 4: Check Your Company File PSID

  1. Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  2. Press F2 on your keyboard to open the Product Information window.
  3. Check the Company File PSID and ensure it matches the PSID in your QuickBooks Payroll Account.

Step 5: Run the QuickBooks Tool Hub

  1. Download the latest version of the QuickBooks Tool Hub from the official Intuit website.
  2. Install the Tool Hub by following the on-screen instructions.
  3. Open the QuickBooks Tool Hub.
  4. Select Program Problems.
  5. Click on Quick Fix my Program.

Step 6: Create a New Windows User

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type Control Panel and press Enter.
  3. Select User Accounts and then Manage another account.
  4. Click on Add a new user in PC settings.
  5. Follow the on-screen instructions to create a new user account.
  6. Log in to QuickBooks using the new user account.

Step 7: Verify Your EIN

  1. Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  2. Go to the Company menu and select My Company.
  3. Check the EIN to ensure it is correct.
  4. If the EIN is incorrect, update it to match the correct number.

Step 8: Contact QuickBooks Support

If none of the above steps work, it’s time to reach out to QuickBooks support for assistance. You can contact them via:

  • Phone: Call QuickBooks support at their official support number.
  • Live Chat: Visit the QuickBooks website and use the live chat feature to get help from a support agent.
  • Email: Send an email detailing your issue to QuickBooks support.


QuickBooks Error PS036 can be a nuisance, but with the right approach, it can be resolved quickly. By understanding the causes and following the troubleshooting steps outlined above, you can get your payroll system back on track in no time.

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