Expense claims

Expense claims are used to record and pay staff members who are claiming back funds where they have personally paid for something whilst working on behalf of the company, such as accommodation, fuel or food expenses.

Each claim can be made up of multiple receipts which is then submitted for approval. Claims are then approved by authorized users and can be grouped by staff member and batch paid.

All the accounting for claims is automatically created. Expense claims can only be processed in base currency.

Expense claim setup

To use the expense claim feature the following needs to be set up:

  • Staff members need to be assigned a claim account number. This is the account code into which all their claim values are recorded. Since the values recorded for an expense claim are amounts due to be paid to the staff member these account codes are usually a liability type account code.
  • For each different category of expense that can be claimed, an account code is needed. For example, accommodation, travel, fuel. These account codes also specify the tax rate of the claim item.

How to set up the staff expense claims feature

Assign the staff member a claim account

Before the staff member can create a claim they will need to be assigned an expenses account:

  1. Go to  Settings > Staff/Users > List staff .
  2. Click on the staff member name to view their details.
  3. Select their claim account in the Expense account field. Since this is where the amount due to be paid to the staff member is recorded it is usually a liability type code. You may want to create a new code for the staff member, at Accounting > Chart of accounts.
  4. Save the staff member details.
  5. Now click on  Permissions  for the staff member.
  6. Use the Accounts-Bookkeeping option to allow/restrict them from approving their own claims.
  7. Save the staff member permissions.

Create expense claim categories

Each type of expense claim should have a separate nominal code where the expenses will be accumulated.

  1. Go to Accounting > Chart of accounts .
  2. Select the Overheads  or Direct expenses account type, either is fine, but check with your accountant to be sure which one you are going to use.
  3. Click the  Add a new nominal code button.
  4. If tax can be claimed on this type of expense select the relevant tax class.
  5. Opt to Show on expenses screen .
  6. Save.

Expense claim workflow

  • A new claim is created by the staff member.
  • The claim is then submitted for approval. Whilst awaiting approval the claim is given a status of Pending . If the staff member has the permission to approve claims, this status is skipped and the claim automatically becomes Approved .
  • When the claim is marked as  Approved  by an authorized user, an accounting journal is created to account for the amount due to be paid to the staff member. To ensure the accounting is correctly created the account code must be assigned to the staff member record. Approved claims can be cancelled, however, the accounting journal will need to be marked as cancelled manually.
  • When a claim is marked as Paid  by an authorized user, an accounting journal is created to clear down the liability value and make an entry on the bank account code. Paid claims cannot be cancelled or deleted.

expense claims flow diagram

How to enter an expense claim

  1. Hover your mouse over your username at the top of the screen and select Enter Expenses .
  2. On the green region on the left-hand side enter the date of the claim.
  3. Select the category of the first item on the claim, e.g. accommodation (each category must be setup as a separate nominal code).
  4. Enter any relevant notes regarding the item.
  5. Enter the amount.
  6. If you want, upload an image, perhaps a scanned image of the receipt.
  7. Click Add .
  8. Continue to add items; they will all be included on the same claim number. Each item is listed on the right-hand side.
  9. (Optional) To assign the expenses to a project, select it from the drop-down menu.
  10. (Optional) To pass the charges on to a client search for and select the client name (go to step 12).

     

    Submitting a Claim :

  11. To complete the claim click the Submit claim button, it is added to the Open claims tab below. If you have the permission to approve claims, it will automatically be approved and added to the Approved claims tab .

     

    Submitting + Charging Clients:

  12. If you are charging a client for the expenses you will be taken directly to a sales invoice with the expense details as line items. If the expense code is taxable, then the tax component of the expense will be added.

How to approve an expense claim

You will need the Bookkeeping permission to be able to approve claims. It is not possible to set approval limits.
  1. Go to  Accounting > Expense claims  to view all expense claims.
  2. Select the claims to approve.
  3. Click the Approve button.

How to pay expense claims

  1. Go to  Accounting > Expense claims  to view all expense claims.
  2. Use the filters to view the claims for a single employee (you can click their name on the listing to filter by them).
  3. Tick the checkboxes next to the claims to be paid.
  4. Click the Pay button.
  5. Select the bank account which the payment will come from, enter a reference and the payment date.
  6. Click the  Pay claims  button.

Paying a claim will enter a bank payment from your bank account into the employee expense account, and mark the claims as "Paid".

pay expense claims

How to cancel an expense claim

A pending claim can be deleted or cancelled. If a claim has already been approved it can only be cancelled, the accounting journal created at the point of marking it approved will need to be manually cancelled. Paid expenses cannot be cancelled at all.

Delete a claim

  1. Go to  Accounting > Expense Claims .
  2. Click the trash icon against the claim to be deleted.

Cancel a claim

  1. Go to Accounting > Expense Claims .
  2. Tick the checkbox next to the claim ot be cancelled.
  3. Click the Cancel button.

This will update the claim status to "cancelled". You need permission to cancel claims. Once you have cancelled the claim you will need to cancel the accounting entries:

Cancel the journal entries

  1. Search for the journal using the claim number then click on the journal ID to open it.
  2. Enter a reason for modification.
  3. Click the  Cancel  button to zero the accounting entries and move them to the suspense nominal codes.

Recharging expenses to clients

If you are incurring these expenses on behalf of a client, then you can create an invoice quickly off the back of the claim. When submitting the claim, ensure that you select the client name, and if relevant, a project too. Then click the Submit claim  button. The claim will be allocated to the client and you can then create a draft invoice ready for processing in Sales.

 
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