Document Date vs. Posting Date

When entering a transaction such as bill, shall we follow the document date or the posting date?

In some accounting software, it does provide a document date (date stated in the bill) and a posting date (the date when you post the transaction into the account). However, in QuickBooks, there is only one date field for you to record the transaction. So, in this case, how shall we make use of this ‘Date’ field in QuickBooks? Shall we use it for document date or simply use it as a posting date?

If you use it as a document date, this bill transaction will age accordingly, but this will affect your month- end or year-end closing figure.

If you use it as a transaction date, although it does not affect your closing figure, but your Accounts Payable Ageing will be wrongly calculated.

Is there a solution or a workaround in QuickBooks to resolve both the Closing figure and Accounts Payable Ageing calculation when a bill dated in previous month needed to record after the book is closed?

In QuickBooks, to resolve it is simple. Since the account had already closed, we shall not record a transaction before the closing date and affects the Closing figure. In the Bill form, other than the Date field, there is also a Date Due field (below the Amount Due field). We can use the Date field as a Posting Date and base on the payment terms given, select the Date Due accordingly.

For example:

Your year-end closing is as of 31 December 2009 and you have closed the accounts. On 20 January 2010, you received a bill from your supplier. The bill dated 26 December 2009 with 30 days payment term. Base on 30 days payment terms, this bill should be due on 25 January 2010.

In the Bill form, you enter 20 January 2010 in the ‘Date’ field (Posting date) and 25 January 2010 in the ‘Bill Due’ field (date when this bill is due). You may consider entering the original document date, 26 December 2009, in the memo field for references.

This transaction will not affect your year-end closing figure, since it does not record before your closing date (31 Dec 2009). Besides, from your Accounts Payable Ageing report it will show the transaction correctly aged.

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