Customer self tagging

I keep getting customers saying they have paid an invoice but its showing as unpaid because we have assigned it to another invoice they have open

This happens when customers are overdue and make a bulk payment. We allocate this to the oldest invoices but soon we get partial payments on invoices and gets confusing for them and us

The customers often do not tell us which invoices their payments are for

If we just tagged their payment to add credit to their account and the customer then assigned the monies to the open invoices themselves, this would be very helpful

It could be offered as an option so we could turn it on or off

It may be easier to ask them to send you a remittance advice note when they make a payment

Yes have tried this but they never do, we scold them for the mixups on their accounts but it all falls on deaf ears

In general it’s better to assign payments on the principle of first payment to oldest invoice. Although from experience I know this gets tricky when clients miss older invoices and pay an amount that matches a subsequent invoice.

If your clients are paying online in their QF control panel, the payments will always get allocated to the invoice(s) displayed just before they go to the payment provider, so there shouldn’t be any issues there.

I personally don’t think it’s ideal to do this at all. The problem is you need to go and instruct them to do complete this reconciliation task, and in the mean time those invoices will age and may trigger further auto-reminders.

The tried and tested way of dealing with these issues is to send them a client statement, this will show all invoices raised and monies in and it shouldn’t be too difficult for them to see what’s going on.

In the absence of any other agreement a payment is applied against the oldest debt. There is legal precedent for this going back to 1816. (Google “Clayton’s Case” for details).


That’s interesting! I’d heard of FIFO (First In, First Out Rule) but hadn’t heard of Clayton’s Case until now.