How to Fix QuickBooks Payroll Error 30159: A Complete Guide

QuickBooks payroll errors can be frustrating to deal with, especially error 30159, which prevents you from processing payroll. But don’t worry – this error is fixable if you know what to do. In this complete guide, I’ll walk you through what QuickBooks error 30159 means, what causes it, and the steps to resolve it so you can get back to paying your employees without disruption.

What Does QuickBooks Error 30159 Mean?

Error 30159 in QuickBooks payroll appears with the message “QuickBooks could not open the company file. Please verify that the company file exists, you have permission to access it, and it is a valid QuickBooks data file.”

This typically occurs when trying to access a company file that QuickBooks cannot locate on your computer or network. The file may have been moved, renamed, deleted, or become corrupted, preventing QuickBooks from opening it to process payroll.

With access to the correct company file, QuickBooks can pull the necessary data to calculate taxes, deductions, net pay, and other payroll items for the pay period. So, error 30159 needs to be resolved before you can complete payroll.

QuickBooks Error 30159

What Causes Error 30159?

The company file is missing or was moved: If you deleted or relocated the QuickBooks company file associated with payroll, error 30159 will appear because QuickBooks can’t find the File. For example, if you move it to an external drive that’s detached.

Permissions changed for the company file: Users may get error 30159 if permissions or sharing settings were changed for the company file, restricting access even if the File still exists in the original location.

The company file is damaged: Corruption or damage to the company file itself may result in error 30159 if QuickBooks cannot recognize or open the File anymore.

The company file is open elsewhere: If the company file is already open in another QuickBooks window, session, or computer, that can prevent it from opening in payroll and lead to error 30159.

Multi-user mode issues: With multi-user mode, network connectivity problems or multi-user mode not enabled correctly can prevent accessing the company file for payroll.

Outdated payroll service: If not updated to the latest payroll service version, that can sometimes create issues opening the company file and cause error 30159.

So, in summary, any scenario where QuickBooks payroll cannot access or open the required company file will lead to error 30159 appearing.

How to Fix Error 30159 in QuickBooks Payroll

While the specific cause may differ, the approaches to fix error 30159 are generally the same. Here are the recommended steps for troubleshooting and resolving error 30159:

Verify the Company File Exists, and You Have Access

First, check that the company file actually still exists in the expected location and has not been accidentally deleted or moved. For example, look for it in the original save location, a backup folder, an external drive, etc.

Next, confirm you have permission to access the company file. Log into Windows as an admin user to rule out any permission issues blocking access.

If the File has been moved or permissions changed, update the file location and settings as needed to restore access.

Check for File Corruption

Open the company file manually to check for damage or corruption. Go to File> Open Company and browse for the File.

If QuickBooks gives any error indicating the File is corrupted, damaged, or unreadable, that’s likely causing the payroll issue. You may need to restore the File from a backup or use QuickBooks’ built-in repair utility.

Verify Only One User Has the File Open

Make sure the company file is closed and not currently open in any other QuickBooks window or session, including on another computer in multi-user mode. Error 30159 can occur if the File is already open elsewhere when payroll tries accessing it.

Close out of the File anywhere it’s open to ensure only one user and instance has access at a time.

Turn Multi-user Mode Off and On

If using QuickBooks multi-user mode, toggle the mode off and back on again. This resets connections and may resolve any errors connecting to the company file from payroll.

To toggle multi-user mode:

Go to File> Switch to Single User Mode

Then switch back to multi-user mode via File> Switch to Multi-user Mode

Then, try re-opening payroll.

Update Payroll Services

Go to Employees > Payroll > Update Payroll Service. Install the latest payroll update and try processing payroll again afterward.

Reinstall or Restore Payroll Software

If other troubleshooting steps don’t resolve error 30159, try reinstalling the QuickBooks payroll software or restoring the company file itself from a backup. This provides a fresh start for connecting payroll with the company file if damaged or misconfigured files are causing the issue.

Preventing QuickBooks Payroll Error 30159

To help avoid QuickBooks payroll error 30159 in the future:

  • Maintain access permissions: Don’t restrict permissions for the company file without also updating access in payroll. Allow open access for any users that need to run payroll.
  • Keep the File in the original location: Don’t move or rename the company file without updating the saved location in payroll settings, as well.
  • Close the File before payroll: Ensure no other users have the company file open when processing payroll.
  • Update payroll regularly: Install the latest payroll service updates for compatibility with the company file.
  • Back up often: Back up the company File frequently in case you need to restore it.

When to Contact QuickBooks Support

If you go through all troubleshooting steps but are still seeing error 30159, it’s time to contact Intuit QuickBooks payroll support for additional help. Support can assist with file repairs, configuration checks, persistent corruption issues, or any other underlying cause.

They can be reached at +1-1888-656-2102. Hours are weekdays from 4 AM to 7 PM Pacific Time.

In Closing

QuickBooks payroll error 30159 can stop you from running payroll, but don’t let it derail you for long. Now that you know what causes error 30159 and the steps to get payroll back up and running, you can troubleshoot the issue and pay employees on time. Quick action and support, if needed, will minimize business disruption. Just be sure to take preventive measures in the future to avoid repeat error 30159 occurrences.