BNA Estate & Gift Tax 709 Preparer Customer Support
Frequently Asked Questions
Latest Software Update
What is the latest version of BNA Estate & Gift Tax 709 Preparer?
The current version of BNA Estate & Gift Tax 709 Preparer on CD is 2012.1. The 2012.1 version prepares the 2012 Form 709, for gifts made during 2012.
Adding Forms and Continuation Schedules
How do I add forms to a return?
1. From the Forms menu, select Add.
2. On the Return Editor dialog, click the form you want to add to the return, then click Add.
To select multiple forms, press Ctrl or Shift as you click each form.
How do I add an additional Form 2848, Form 8275, or Form 8275-R?
At the top of the Return pane, right-click the Tax Return icon, select Add, then select Form 2848, Form 8275, or Form 8275-R. The duplicate forms are added to the bottom of the Return pane.
The return I’m working on has a lot of gifts. How do I add a continuation schedule?
Continue entering rows of data on the original schedule. When all rows of the schedule have been filled, the program automatically creates a continuation schedule — viewable at print time — as you insert new rows.
How do I add a continuation schedule to a return?
The program automatically adds continuation schedules to the return at print or preview time, based on what can fit on the IRS forms. There's nothing that you need to do.
How do I add a custom attachment in the client file to display or print with the return?
You can add a custom attachment in the client file as follows:
With the focus on the related schedule, from the Forms menu, select Attachments > Custom > Add. Type the attachment’s title in the Enter New Title for Custom Attachment dialog, the click OK. The program adds a new item in the Return pane for the custom attachment. In the Return pane, double-click the new item, then type the information you want to include with the return.
In the Return pane, right-click the page to which you want to attach additional information. Select Add > Custom Attachment. Double-click the new item titled Custom Attachment. Type the information that you want to include with the return and, if desired, rename the attachment as described below.
How do I change the title of an attachment displayed in the Return Pane?
You can change an attachment's title as follows:
In the Return pane, click the attachment's title once to select it and then click again (do not double-click). The title is then highlighted and can be edited. To apply the changes, click outside the title.
In the Return pane, double-click the page (not the attachment) to which the attachment is related. From the Forms menu, select Attachments, select Custom, then select Open. The Custom Attachments dialog opens, listing all attachments related to the page. Click the title, then click Rename. On the Enter New Title for Custom Attachment dialog, type the new title for the attachment, then click OK.
How do I move an attachment so that it prints after a different page or form?
In the Return pane, click the attachment's title, then drag and drop onto another page.
How do I set up a "Sticky Note" in the program?
1. In the Form pane, right-click where you want to place your sticky note.
2. From the shortcut menu, click New Comment Field. The cursor changes shape to cross-hairs.
3. Click and hold down the left mouse button.
Continue to hold down the mouse button while you drag the mouse diagonally down and to the right, until the yellow Comment Field is the size and shape you want. (Drag means to hold down the left mouse button while moving the mouse.)
4. Release the mouse button. A Comment Field Text Editor dialog opens.
5. Enter your text into the Comment Field Text Editor dialog.
6. Click OK.
Note: The sticky note can be marked to print (or not print) by right-clicking the note and selecting (or deselecting) Print.
If you close the sticky note and need to edit its contents:
1. Right-click the sticky note. Its color changes to that of a selected field.
2. From the shortcut menu, click Edit. The Comment Field Text Editor dialog opens.
3. Edit your text, then click OK.
How do I recalculate the return?
Press F9 or click the Recalc All button to recalculate the values on the return.
To update the diagnostic messages in the Messages pane, press F10 or click the Run Diagnostics button.
To update the split gift information from the spouse’s return, press F11.
How do I round the values on the gift tax return to dollars?
From the Options menu, select Round to Dollars to round the value of the open return.
Select Round to Dollars on the General tab of the Preferences dialog (accessed from the Options menu) to round future returns.
Data Entry and Editing
How do I restore the calculated amount to a field I overwrote previously?
1. With calculated fields showing in the Data Entry pane, click the calculated field in the Data Entry pane whose value you want to restore.
2. Double-click the Unlocked button to the right of the calculated field to lock the field and restore the calculated value. Note that the button changes to its locked state.
I have a lot of information to provide in the description fields of the schedules and it is hard making these long descriptions in the small data entry fields. Can I have more space to make my entries?
Yes, you can -- in many places. When a data entry field has the Expand Entry button, you can click this button to open a dialog that provides additional space for long descriptions.
How do I find the data entry field for a specific field on the Form pane?
In the Return pane, double-click the icon for the form page, then click the particular field on the Form pane. The associated Data Entry pane will be displayed with the focus on the associated Data Entry field.
In the program's Help system, see "Parts of the Program Window".
How do I clear both the Yes and No answers for a question?
In the Data Entry pane, click the check box that contains the checkmark once. Note that the box is now gray. Press Delete.
How do I show calculated fields in the Data Entry pane?
To show (or hide) calculated fields in the Data Entry pane:
From the Options menu, select Show Calculated.
On the toolbar, click the Show/Hide Calculated Fields button.
How do I override a calculated field?
1. With the calculated fields showing in the Data Entry pane, click the calculated field you want to override.
2. Double-click the Locked button to the right of the calculated field to unlock the field to editing. The button changes to the Unlocked button.
3. Enter the new value into the field, then, at the top of the Data Entry pane, click the Apply Now button.
Caution! Do not click the Unlocked button unless you want to restore the calculated value.
I overwrote a calculated amount and now the number I entered isn't being used in that field anymore. What happened?
The program restores the calculated amount to an overwritten field when you return to the field and double-click the Unlocked button. The button changes to its locked state and the calculated value is restored.
I entered a date and would now like to delete that date. How can I do this?
In the Date field of the Data Entry pane, click the date to highlight the day, month, or year, then press Delete.
Why can’t I enter numbers in a field using the number keypad?
Check to make sure that Num Lock is on.
How do I enter the GST Exemption allocated for each gift on Schedule D?
Just enter the GST Exemption in the field labeled "GST Exemption allocated" in the Data Entry pane of the appropriate schedule, and it will be carried automatically by the program to the associated row on Schedule D, Part 2.
How do I enter gifts on Schedule A?
The program uses Data Entry panes to make it fast and easy to enter gift data and to ensure that all required information is included on the return. The donee and gift information you enter is automatically carried to the corresponding part on the form.
1. Open Schedule A by double-clicking Page 2 (Schedule A) in the Return pane at the left. Click Schedule A, Part 1, Part 2, or Part 3.
2. In the Donee ID field, click the Expand Entry button (In the program’s Help system, see “Special Field Indicators”).
If you have not previously entered any donee information in the Donee Worksheet, the program opens the Enter Donee Information dialog.
If you previously entered donee information in the Donee Worksheet, the Select Donee dialog opens. If the donee receiving this gift is not on the list, click New. The Enter Donee Information dialog opens. Enter the requested donee information. The information for the selected Donee will appear on the form and be added to the Donee worksheet.
If you previously entered donee information in the Donee Worksheet for the donee receiving the gift, highlight the donee in the list, then click OK. The information for the selected Donee will appear on the form.
3. Enter the following information about the Donee's Gift
CUSIP number (if the gift was of securities)
Donor's adjusted basis of gift
Value at date of gift
Note: The Donee information from Donee Worksheet, the Gift description, and the CUSIP number are used to create a description that prints on the form.
4. Select all that apply to the Donee's gift in the Classification section. Depending upon your answers elsewhere on the return, some of the fields in this section may be automatically checked, if certain conditions apply as outlined below:
Treat this Item as a Split Gift will automatically be selected if all of the following apply:
- The donor elected gift splitting on Form 709, Part 1, line 12.
- The spouse is a U.S. citizen.
- This is not a gift to the spouse.
- The gift was made during the time of the marriage.
- The donor did not give the spouse a general power of appointment over this gift.
Gift to spouse will be checked automatically if the donee receiving this gift is specified as the donor's spouse on the Donee worksheet.
Include in Marital Deduction will be checked automatically if all of the following apply:
- The gift is to the spouse.
- The gift was given during the time of marriage.
- The gift is not a gift of terminable interest.
How do I change the Nontaxable Portion of Transfer amounts that are carried from Schedule A, Part 2, to Schedule D?
The nontaxable portion of the transfer on Schedule A, Part 2, defaults to the amount in the Annual Exclusion Data Entry field. If the gift does not qualify as a non-taxable gift for GST purposes, then check this box in the Data Entry pane of the gift and click "Apply Now". You will see that the field labeled "Non-taxable portion of transfer" has become zero. It will also be zero in Column C for the associated row in Schedule D, Part 1.
How do I enter split gifts?
1. On Form 709, Part 1, click line 12 in the Form pane, then click Yes in the Data Entry pane. Note that the spouse must be a U.S. citizen for the program to treat any gifts as split gifts.
2. Enter gifts on Schedule A, Part 1, 2, or 3, as appropriate. The program treats a gift entered on Schedule A as a split gift if:
The gift was not made to the spouse.
The gift was made during the time of the marriage.
The donor did not give the spouse a general power of appointment over this gift.
Note that the program will automatically load the split gifts entered on the spouse’s return using the "Import Spouse’s Split Gifts" operation.
How do I set up Import Split Gifts from the spouse’s return into the open return?
To import split gifts from Schedule A, Part 2, of a spouse’s return, you must maintain a separate return for the spouse in the same version of the BNA 709 Preparer and gift splitting must be elected on both returns (Form 709, Part 1, line 12).
To import the split gifts from the spouse’s return into the open return:
1. From the Utilities menu, select Import Spouse's Split Gifts. The Import Spousal Split Gift Data dialog opens.
2. Click Browse to display the Open dialog. Select the spouse’s return and click Open.
3. Click Options to select whether or not you want the program to prompt you to import the spouse’s data when the current return is opened.
4. Click OK to import the spouse’s data into the taxpayer’s return.
5. Click Save on the toolbar. Note. The import is one-way — only the split gifts in the open return are updated. To update spousal split gifts reported on the spouse’s return, you must open the souse’s return and repeat the process described above.
How do I keep an item number from being displayed or printed on Schedule A?
In the Form pane, click the row whose item number you want to omit. In the Data Entry pane, select Suppress item number.
How do I change the order of items already entered on a schedule?
1. With the focus on any row of the schedule involved, from the Edit menu, select Grid Rows, then select Sort.
2. On the Grid Rows Arranger dialog, select the row you want to move, then click Up or Down until the row is properly positioned.
3. Click OK.
When applicable, the program automatically renumbers the rows to reflect the new sort order.
I have a large number of items on my schedule. How can I jump to an item in the middle of the schedule?
1. In the Form pane, right-click one of the items on the schedule.
2. From the shortcut menu, select Go to Row. A dialog opens that lists the items on the schedule.
3. Highlight the item you want to move to then click OK.
Can the program print lines separating items on the schedule?
1. From the Options menu, select Preferences.
2. On the Grids tab of the Preferences dialog, select Show Horizontal Grid Lines.
3. Click OK.
How do I enter a new row on a schedule?
To add a new row, with the focus on any row of the schedule involved:
From the Edit menu, select Grid Rows, then select either Insert (to add a row before the row with the focus) or Append (to add a row after the last row on the schedule).
How do I add space between the rows of information on the grids?
1. On the toolbar, click Options.
2. Select Preferences. The Preferences dialog opens.
3. On the Grids tab, make sure Add Space is selected, then increase the number in the Height of Space box.
How do I delete the horizontal grid lines showing on the schedules?
1. On the toolbar, click Options.
2. Click Preferences. The Preferences dialog opens.
3. On the Grids tab, click to uncheck Show Horizontal Grid Lines.
How do I delete several rows of a grid at once?
The program will permit you to delete only one row at a time, but you can do this efficiently. In the Form pane, click the row and:
From the Edit menu, select Grid Rows, then select Delete.
Right-click the row, then select Delete Row.
The Spouse's split gifts aren't showing up on Schedule D, Part 3. How do I get the program to include these gifts here?
From the Utilities menu, select Update Schedule D, Part 3.
I entered gift data in the wrong place. Can the entry be moved?
The program permits you to move one row of gift entry at a time. You may move information between Parts 1, 2, and 3 of Schedule A. In the Form pane, click the row that you want to move, then:
From the Edit menu, select Grid Rows, then select Move Gift.
Right-click the row, then select Move Gift.
1. From the Utilities menu, select Move Gift. The Gift Mover dialog opens.
2. Select the grid from which the gift will be moved.
3. Select the grid to which the gift will be moved.
4. Select the gift to be moved.
5. Answer Yes to confirm that you wish to move the gift
How do I scroll through the grid? I don't know how to find an item on the schedule.
One way is to click on an item in the grid in the Form pane, then click the Next Data Entry Pane button until you reach the item you want. Another way is to use the Go to Selected Row dialog. This dialog lists all the rows on a grid, and shows the values in each column of the grid for all items, so it is easy to find the item you want. Right-click on an item in the grid, then, from the shortcut menu, select Go To. Note you can click and drag on the divider of a column heading in the dialog to expand the displayed values.
How do I access help for a specific field?
In either the Form pane or the Data Entry pane, click the Data Entry field in question, then press F1.
From the Help menu, select Help on Spot. Then click the field in question.
On the toolbar, click the Help button. Then click the field in question.
How do I add and delete users (Network version)?
1. Click the BNA 709 Preparer Network License Administrator shortcut icon (located on the Start menu/Programs/BNA Software program folder).
The BNA Network License Administrator dialog appears.
2. To remove a workstation ID from the list of registered workstations, select it from the list then click Remove.
3. Click OK to close the utility.
To add a new user, run the workstation setup at the new workstation.
Note: This operation can only be performed by the Network Administrator or someone that has access to the Network License Administrator shortcut icon.
Note: The BNA Network License Administrator dialog can also be accessed from any PC on which the client installation has been run. For further information, contact Technical Support for further information at 1–800–424–2938.
How do I create a new return using a template?
1. From the Options menu, select Preferences.
2. On the General tab of the Preferences dialog, select Show Templates for New Returns, then click OK.
3. From the File menu, select New.
4. On the New 709 Return dialog, select From a Template, highlight a template from the list, then click OK.
To set a template as the default, on the New 709 Return dialog, select Set as Default for Future Returns.
What are the different types of diagnostic messages shown in the Messages pane?
The messages are ranked according to severity as:
What keyboard shortcuts does the BNA 709 Preparer offer?
You can access any menu or command using the standard Windows shortcut (Alt + underscored letter of the command or menu). The BNA 709 Preparer also provides several other keyboard shortcuts that allow you to bypass the menu system by pressing one or more keys to run program functions. In the program’s Help system, see "Using Shortcut Keys" for a complete list of the shortcut keys available to you.
How do I set up a preparer profile for my practice?
1. From the Options menu, select Preparer Database, then select Edit.
2. On the Edit Preparer Information Database dialog, click New, then enter the preparer's name and other related information. Click OK.
To set up additional preparers, repeat these steps.
If your practice has a network installation of the BNA 709 Preparer, all those using the program will share the preparer database and have access to the preparer profiles entered therein. When a profile is updated, everyone has immediate access to the updated profile.
I use the BNA 706 Preparer and have several preparers already set up in a Preparer Database — do I have to set up these preparers all over again for the BNA 709 Preparer?
No! You can share the same Preparer Database.
1. From the Options menu, highlight Preparer Database, then select Path.
2. In the Open dialog, browse to where your BNA 706 Preparer's practitioners.inf file is stored, click on the file, then click Open.
How do I specify a preparer for a return?
1. From the Options menu, select Preparer Database, then select Select.
2. On the Edit Preparer Information Database dialog, click the name of the preparer to be used on the return, then click OK.
The program will automatically use the preparer's information in the database when preparing Form 709 and the Transmittal letter.
What is the meaning of CAF Number in the Occupation area of the Edit Preparer Information Database dialog?
The CAF Number is the Centralized Authorization File Number kept on file by the Internal Revenue Service.
Printing & Display
How do I prevent a specific form(s) from printing in the return I print for my client?
You have complete control over the items that print in a return set.
From the Options menu, select Return Sets. In the Defined Return Sets: box, click Standard Client. Scroll through the Include Forms and Schedules: box, click the check box for Form 2848 to clear it, then click OK.
You can also choose the forms that you want to print using options on the File Menu. From the File menu, select Print > Forms > Selected. The Select Forms to Print dialog opens. Click Select to choose the forms you want to print. By default, all of the forms are selected. Double-click on the checkbox next to a form to deselect it. This will prevent the form from printing with the client’s return. Once you have selected all of the forms that you want to print for your client, click Print.
I can’t seem to preview the last item on a continuation schedule, although the item’s valuation is included in the totals.
Sometimes an item on a form cannot be previewed properly at a particular zoom setting on a particular monitor because of the monitor’s resolution, video driver, etc. Changing to a different zoom setting usually allows you to see the missing item. Even if you can’t see the item in the preview window, the item will be included in the printed return.
How do I keep unused forms from printing with the return?
Even if there is no data entered, all forms listed in the Return pane will print when you print a return. You can remove unused forms from the Return pane.
To make sure unwanted forms are not printed:
1. From the File menu, select Print, select Forms, then select Selected.
2. When the Select Forms to Print dialog is displayed, double-click each form you want to print. After selecting each form you want to print, click Print.
How do I print just one form?
With the form or schedule to be printed open in the Form pane, from the File menu, select Print, select Forms, then select Current Page or press Ctrl+P.
How do I print a Continuation Schedule without the form it continues?
You can print a Continuation Schedule by itself as follows:
1. From the Options menu, select Preferences. On the Printing tab, select Display Page Selection Dialog when Printing Selected Forms. Click OK.
2. From the File menu, select Print, select Forms, then select Selected. The Select Forms to Print dialog opens.
3. Click the schedule whose continuation schedule you want to print, then click Print. The Print dialog opens.
4. Make any changes needed in this dialog, then click OK. The Select Pages to Print dialog opens, with all pages preselected.
5. Click the pages that you want to print (the item for the continuation schedule will include "Cont" in its label), then click OK.
The printed form is missing words and lines.
Your printer may have lost fonts from memory or may not have enough memory to print the forms. Try turning off the printer and turning it back on again before reprinting a page from the return.
The form looks fine on screen, but the form prints oddly.
A printer font that the form needs may not be loaded. Call technical support at 1-800-424-2938 option 5 for assistance.
There is something odd about the appearance of the IRS form on-screen. I see a "copyright" symbol displayed on Form 709, Part 1, line 10, rather than the solid arrow found on the actual form. Also, the boxes "holding" the X's were missing. I see this both on the Form pane and in print preview.
The BNA 709 Preparer program may be missing a font. Re-install the BNA 709 Preparer program and see if this fixes the problem for you.
If this does not work:
1. Go to the Windows Start menu, click Settings, then click Control Panel.
2. In the Control panel, double-click Fonts.
3. Scroll down to Super Symbols, click the item, then, from the File menu, click Delete.
4. From the File menu, select Install New Font. The font is stored in the Resources/Fonts folder of the BNA 709 Preparer program CD-ROM.
How do I get zeros to display and print in a schedule's Value column?
In the Form pane, click the field for which you want to show zeros, then: From the Edit menu, select Field Properties, then select Show Zeros.
Right-click on the field and, from the shortcut menu, select Show Zeros.
Repeat for each field that you want to show zeros.
How do I get rid of a zero that's displaying in an amount field?
In the Form pane, click the field for which you want to remove the zero, then:
- From the Edit menu, select Field Properties, then select Show Zeros,
- Right-click on the field and, from the shortcut menu, select Show Zeros.
Repeat for each field that you do not want to show zeros.
Another way is to use the Go to Selected Row dialog. This dialog lists all the rows on a grid, and shows the values in each column of the grid for all items, so it is easy to find the item you want. Right-click on an item in the grid, then, from the shortcut menu, select Go To. Note you can click and drag on the divider of a column heading in the dialog to expand the displayed values.
How do I get to the next page of a form?
Press Ctrl+Down Arrow to move to the next page in the return. (Press Ctrl+Up Arrow to move to the previous page).
In the Return pane, double-click the item for the page you want to view.
On the toolbar, click the Next Page button.
How do I change the size of the Form pane or Data Entry pane?
Use the mouse to hover the pointer over the border of the particular window pane until it changes to a split indicator or double-arrow pointer. Then, click on the border and drag to resize the window.
How do I hide the Messages pane or Return pane?
From the View menu, select Messages Pane or Return Pane to toggle between show and hide. The Messages Pane can also be shown or hidden by clicking the Show or hide messages pane button.
Remember, these window panes can also be resized as described above.
I recently received my newly ordered program and discovered there is a new release of the program pending. Do I have to pay for the program update?
No. Program updates are distributed through the program's web update feature (click “Check for Update” on the Help menu) or by our mailing a CD to the shipping address on your account. Either way, there is no additional charge for program updates distributed during your license term.
How do I know when a new release or program patch is available?
If you have access to the Internet, use either of the following procedures:
From the Help menu, click Check for Update. The program will tell you if a new maintenance release of the program is available on the BNA Software Updates Web site. If a release is available, the program offers you an opportunity to connect to the site where you can download the release. You can have the program check for updates automatically, as often as you want. Furthermore, to have the program automatically check for updates each time you either open a return or start a new return, open the Preferences dialog (accessed from the Options menu) and click the Updates tab. Then, select the “Enable Web Update” checkbox and the “Check for update at startup” checkbox and click OK.
Check for 709 Preparer updates by accessing our Web site – www.bnasoftware.com. At the top of the page, click “Customer Support” (the “Product Support” page opens). From the “Select one…” dropdown list, select “BNA Estate & Gift Tax 709 Preparer” and click the “SUBMIT” button. Under the “Product Support” heading (right-hand side of the page), cursor down to the “Software Updates” heading and click the “LEARN MORE” button. On the Window’s left side, click the appropriate update to display a description of the update you selected, along with detailed instructions for installing the update. If, after reading the instructions, you decide to install the update, click the corresponding (highlighted) file to apply the update to your 709 Preparer program.
Alternatively, call the BNA Software toll-free technical support phone line at 1-800-424-2938 and ask a technician if any program updates are available.
Can the program check automatically for updates on the Web?
Yes it can. If the "Enable Web Update" and "Check for update at startup" checkboxes are selected on the Updates tab of the Preferences dialog (see Options menu's Preferences command), each time you open a return (or start a new return), the program automatically checks the BNA Software Website for program updates and enables you to immediately download the update(s). Even if you selected only the "Enable Web Update" checkbox, you could still download the update(s) by selecting the Help menu's Check for Update command.
When "Check for update at startup" is selected, the application will indicate if an update is available upon launching of the application (if there is no update, the dialog will disappear). The updater will not check for updates when the user clicks "New" or "Open" from within the application.
Note: The program only checks for updates associated with that year’s release. If you want to check for updates in a different year, you must make sure you open the version of the program that you are interested in updating.