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Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

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  • Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

    This is a little project to track my time and verify that my hours and taxes are right on my paycheck.

    I've been trying to do a Lookup on the Fed_Tax_Table file. The filter uses the Pay Year, Filing Status and Pay Frequency, Low End Wage and High End Wages. I'm not having any luck. I thought it was the way I was using quotations in the filter so I've tried 3 different ways (see the buttons on the lower right of the form "My Pay Check").

    I have been using Excel to do this for several years and thought it would be a good Alpha5 project. My next step would be to add the State Tax Table and calculate the YTD totals. I know, why store the YTD's when they can be calculated... Small number of records, only me on the system, something different to try.

    If anyone can help with the lookup problem, I would appreciate it. I've attached a zipped copy of the DB.

    Thanks in advance,
    Jerry Gray

  • #2
    Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

    At home currently and only have v5 available but I think you are having trouble constructing the lookups.

    First thing to remember is

    everything inside two quotation marks is taken literally.

    avar = "King"
    ? "I am avar"
    = "I am avar" (Not "I am King")
    Your first button has a line of code

    Add_Base = lookup("fed_tax_table","fed_tax_table->Tax_Year=[COLOR="Red"]My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year[/COLOR] .and. fed_tax_table->Filing_Status=My_Pay_Period->Fed_File_Stat .and. fed_tax_table->Pay_Frequency=My_Pay_Period->Pay_Frequency) .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Bottom>=My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Top<=My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms","Base_Tax")
    This is interpreted by Alpha without regard as to your intention to substitute the values represented by such things as My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year. Inside the quotes My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year is interpreted literally as "My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year". IOW Alpha doesn't know you want it to put something in the place of the text My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year.

    Then you have to tell Alpha how to handle the things you do substitute. Numeric values are not an issue because Alpha does that for you. Character values must be quoted.

    You first line thus should look like....

    Add_Base = lookup("fed_tax_table","fed_tax_table->Tax_Year="+My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year+" .and. fed_tax_table->Filing_Status="+quote(My_Pay_Period->Fed_File_Stat)+" .and. fed_tax_table->Pay_Frequency="+quote(My_Pay_Period->Pay_Frequency)+" .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Bottom>="+My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms+" .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Top<="+My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms,"Base_Tax")
    You can experiment in the interactive editor with statements such as these to get the feel for them. Write down some likely values for


    then try something like this in the interactive (filling in reasonable values for the fields you want to substitute)

    Add_Base = lookup("fed_tax_table","fed_tax_table->Tax_Year="+2008+" .and. fed_tax_table->Filing_Status="+quote("M")+" .and. fed_tax_table->Pay_Frequency="+quote("W")+" .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Bottom>="+3+" .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Top<="+3,"Base_Tax")
    ? Add_Base
    =?????(I don't know)
    There can be only one.


    • #3
      Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table


      See the attached zip file -

      First I think from looking at the fed tax table and comparing it to your lookup field filter, you might have a calculation wrong

      .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Bottom[color="red"]>=[/color]My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Top[color="red"]<=[/color]My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms
      might it be

      .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Bottom[color="blue"]<=[/color]My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms .and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Top[color="blue"]>=[/color]My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms
      The first way according to following the lookup table filter - will never have the bottom and the top on the same record - the second one will.

      Also as Stan pointed out first you were using single quotes and then you used the quote() function.

      In the zip file it seems like the filter works if you change the quotes to double quotes and swap the less than and the greater than.

      No knowing the fed tax code in detail I may be all wet on that but anyway try the zip file to see if the proper tax is written to the field this way using the new calculation swapping the less than and greater than


      Tom Baker


      • #4
        Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

        Stan, I tried so many different ways, it looks like I screwed it up some.

        Tom, I plugged your code into my app and it works great. You were correct in the >= and <= mistake. In making the different examples, I was copying parts and pasting.

        I quite often work so long on something that none of it makes sense.

        Thank you for your on to the other bells and whistles.

        Thanks again,
        Jerry Gray


        • #5
          Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table


          I forgot to say last night that I also changed the calculation of the "NEW_TAX" as follows

          New_Tax = Add_Base + ((My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms - Over_Amt)*Add_Pct/100)
          I added "/100" after Add_Pct to make it a decimal. The amount in the fed tax table for the percentage are full numbers not decimal.

          I am sure you found this out already, but just wanted to let you know what else I changed.



          • #6
            Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table


            Thanks again.

            I have moved the code to a script to be run from the OnChange event for the Current_Total_Income and Current_Total_Deductions fields both have field rules so any changes will automatically update the taxes.

            I have done some work on the MS tax table. The exemption amounts vary for the different filing status's. There is no calculation involved, so I plan to use a case statement for the lookup to pull the amount based on the exemption amount.

            Jerry Gray


            • #7
              Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

              I have a problem with Lookup() syntax too. I can create the simple Lookup() syntax but complex .... I need your help.

              I made several tables, an employee, Employee_taxfile, Payroll_head, Payroll_days, and Fedeeral_Tax tables for simple Payroll system.
              the Payroll_days table has employee_id and payroll date fields with parent table as Employee.

              I am trying to get a field value from Federal_tax table and calculate it.
              I am on Payroll_days table. I used the Code Editor, Function Interactive page.
              My pseudocode is
              (1) Payroll_days->Emp_id = current record (?) Emp_taxfile->emp_id
              (2) Look up the Emp_taxfile->emp_file_status value
              (3) Look up the Emp_taxfile->emp_Pay_period value
              (4) Look up the Emp_taxfile->emp_County value
              (5) Payroll_head->Period_from_date = Federal_tax->Start_date
              (6) Federal_tax->File_status = Emp_taxfile->emp_file_status
              (7) Federal_tax->File_period = Emp_taxfile->emp_pay_period
              (8) bring a field value ("allowance)

              dim vFdrallow as n

              "tax_year=payroll_head->tax_year .and. txfdr_filing_status = payroll_days->emp_file_status .and. tax_fdr->file_period = payroll_days->emp_file_period" ,\

              = 0
              I know I wrote wrong on above syntax. Obviously, That all I can think about it. I could not figured out ..

              I will make a Zip files by Tomorrow and send it.


              • #8
                Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

                "tax_year=payroll_head->tax_year .and. [COLOR="Red"]txfdr_[/COLOR]filing_status = payroll_days->emp_file_status .and. tax_fdr->file_period = payroll_days->emp_file_period" ,\
                This part looks wrong. Maybe

                "tax_year=payroll_head->tax_year .and. [COLOR="Red"]tax_fdr->[/COLOR]filing_status = payroll_days->emp_file_status .and. tax_fdr->file_period = payroll_days->emp_file_period" ,\
                If so it can be reduced to

                "tax_year=payroll_head->tax_year .and. filing_status = payroll_days->emp_file_status .and. file_period = payroll_days->emp_file_period" ,\
                You are looking up into tax_fdr, you don't need to specify that table in the filter.
                There can be only one.


                • #9
                  Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

                  Good Morning, Stan

                  Thank you for your tip.
                  "You are looking up into tax_fdr, you don't need to specify that table in the filter"

                  I try it now.


                  • #10
                    Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

                    Hi Stan,
                    I looked UP and DOWN, Left and Right, Above and below, Top and bottom, Add and Minus but still not find the way to get out here.

                    My Interactive code Editor:

                    ? t.records_get()
                    = 2

                    ? t.ALLOWANCE
                    = 60
                    ? t.START_DATE
                    = {01/01/2008}

                    ? t.FILE_STATUS
                    = "Single "

                    = 67.31
                    = "2008"

                    = "Married "

                    = "2008"
                    = "Married "
                    = "Weekly "

                    vEmpStatus ="married"
                    = "married"

                    = 0 <--- WRONG, Why?

                    vFdrAll = lookup("tax_fdr","tax_year = payroll_head->payroll_year .and. file_status = employees->taxfile_status .and. file_period =employees->taxfile_frequency","allowance")
                    error: lookup(tax_fdr,tax_year = payroll_head->payroll_year .and. file_status = employees->taxfile_status .and. file_period =employees->taxfile_frequency,ALLOWANCE) Field is not recognized
                    ERROR: Extra characters at end of expression <== Error Message

                    'My Syntax Breakdown
                    'vFdrAll = lookup("tax_fdr",
                    '"tax_year = payroll_head->payroll_year
                    '**Tax_year ==> I used convertion, cyear(Start_date, field name)
                    '**Payroll_year ==> I used convertion, cyear(payroll_start_date, field name)
                    '.and. file_status = employees->taxfile_status
                    '.and. file_period =employees->taxfile_frequency", "allowance")

                    'Tom Baker Sample
                    'Add_Pct = lookup("fed_tax_table",
                    '.and. Filing_Status=My_Pay_Period->Fed_File_Stat
                    '.and. Pay_Frequency=My_Pay_Period->Pay_Frequency
                    '.and. Wage_Bottom<=My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms
                    '.and. Wage_Top>=My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms","Add_Tax")

                    vFdrAll = lookup("tax_fdr","tax_year = "+payroll_head->payroll_year+" .and. file_status = "+quote(employees->taxfile_status)+" .and. file_period ="+quote(employees->taxfile_frequency),"allowance")
                    error: lookup(tax_fdr,tax_year = 2008 .and. file_status = "Married " .and. file_period ="Weekly ",ALLOWANCE)
                    Argument is incorrect data type <== Error Message

                    ' Stan Sample
                    'Add_Base = lookup("fed_tax_table","fed_tax_table->Tax_Year="+My_Pay_Period->Pay_Year+"
                    '.and. fed_tax_table->Filing_Status="+quote(My_Pay_Period->Fed_File_Stat)+"
                    '.and. fed_tax_table->Pay_Frequency="+quote(My_Pay_Period->Pay_Frequency)+"
                    '.and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Bottom>="+My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms+"
                    '.and. fed_tax_table->Wage_Top<="+My_Pay_Period->Taxable_Fed_Ms, "Base_Tax")

                    How can I fix it and understand the lookup() syntax?


                    • #11
                      Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table

                      OOP. I Added too much " on, +Quote(name), here.
                      vEmpStatus ="married"
                      ? vempstatus
                      = "married"

                      = 67.31
                      Simple Lookup is fine.


                      • #12
                        Re: Help with Lookup on Fed Tax Table


                        Can you zip your files and post them?

                        Jerry Gray