I am not sure about the people, who say you can not have “gaps” in your invoice numbers.
As far as I know, all the Governments or their institutions require is a unique number. They don’t have to be without any gaps. As far as I remember, thats a common misinformation.
My information is based on my current knowledge of the German requirements.
If someone has references to really prove that it’s wrong information, please post them, so we can check it with our accountants as well.
EDIT: Small example:
Some people have invoice numbers like 2017-07-0005. When the next month starts it would be 2017-08-0001. How will any accountant, or any other person who is looking into your accounts, be able to know if the invoice numbers 2017-07-0006, 0007, 0008 and so on, were ever existing? That wasn’t a issue for all the companies who do it like this until now, and probably it will never be.
Thanks! Some times one needs to take the noise out and start with the facts.
Does any one have any government document that says all invoice number had to be sequential without gaps? I think having a unique number on the invoice makes sense but that would be best practice, but not a law. And if Germany has not been perspective (from what I read) then I don’t believe Spain would be.
Then the person receiving the invoice would have 2 different invoices with the same number? That’s strange. Where’s the audit trail?
Careful Deepak_Pai! Please don’t mix up the topic of the unique number with the topic of the sequential number without gaps.
In Germany at least a unique number is required. I can not send a document, with different content and a number, which already has been used and got its way out of my “system”. It has to be unique. Locally, you are free to do with you invoice draft whatever you want, but as soon as it “found its way” to the customer, you shouldn’t send a corrected invoice with the same number. It should have another number → unique.
I think ERPNext is doing a good job handling this at the moment. Of course you can argue about, if drafts have to block a number even if they have been deleted, but thats another topic.
So if I want to change an invoice, I have to cancel the old one. If I already sent the one I cancelled to my customer, I have to inform the customer and send him an cancellation information in some way. After I did this, I can send him a new invoice with another number.
Thats more or less the way ERPNext provides at the moment.
The law in Spain is clear, the invoices are correlative by series and type (article 6, section a), and the series must be justified, for example a serie by physical store. Types are the normal, reduced, rectificative, credit notes … 
I do not know how many countries this is done, but in Spain it is a requirement. The problem here is not our customers, it’s the tax law. Here quarterly, semiannually or annually taxes are presented and this requisit among others are checked. We can have a treasury audit. In our case we do it quarterly due to the volume of transactions.
I have the doubt if once filed taxes can be changed numbering, but I think you can not, that goes by accounting year. Tomorrow I will consult with the financiers.
- I have been working on JD Edwards E1 as Finance and Distribution Consultant for last 10+ years, worked on projects in Pakistan, Gulf and USA and I am new to ERPNext and in fact in this corporate world it’s really a very nice product:
1.1 Submit is similar to Post in JDE.
1.2 Posting is done at Batch level and Batch may contain 1 or more transactions / invoices etc.
1.3 Once posted that Transaction / Invoice can either be voided / reversed or amended in a sense that new lines can be added only and all posted lines can’t be modified at all.
1.4 If we need to increase or decrease the amount of invoice / tax payable due to any valid reason, we need to issue debit / credit note for the same which shall have separate serial numbers which are called Next Numbers in JDE.
1.5 SI-0001 as it is in ERPNext. SI is called Document Type in JDE and 8 digit number is separately maintained for every Document Type.
- In Pakistan, we need to maintain serial number for Sales Tax Invoices.
- Submitted / Posted Document / Transaction / Invoice can be voided / reversed / amended due to any valid reason.
- By law; SI-00001-1 may or may not be accepted.
Off the topic: Now a days all my free time is for this awesome product ERPNext and considering myself as a big supporter of Open Source Projects; keeping the structure of JDE in mind for sure, I will start contributing pretty soon I hope!
Maybe you are confused about what you think I am confused about. I should have been more specific. What I said was no one has come forward with a legal document till that point of time in the requirement of (a) sequential (b) unique by law from any country. Just that “my accountant says…”
What I said was that requirement (b) makes sense universally with or without a law. Numbers were invented to count and probably to identify. No brainer
What ERPNext does is fine and perfect.
Based on the translation of the Spanish law it does not say there can’t be a gap. Although a logical if sequence might be required, the sequence is not defined.
For example, if I fancy a logic that I issue only even numbered invoices there is no problem. AtThen every odd number is missing. Again I don’t see an issue. But if I was born in Spain I would use a Fibonacci sequenced number on my invoice.
Just to add my two cents to the discussion
In France the legal requirements regarding invoice numbering are:
Numbering should be in a continuous sequence without gaps
→ It is tolerated to use year or months prefixes: 2017-XX or 2017-07-XX for example, but the administration will be more careful in checking if you don’t try to hide any invoices.
Numbering should be unique: You can’t have two invoices with the same number.
In case of cancellation and modification, the new invoice/credit note should mention the former invoice: There is no mention of a special numbering.
But from previous experiences with SAP and smaller accounting software, the way it is handled by ERPNext (creating a new version of the first invoice) is quite standard.
As long as all operations are registered, it is fine from a french accounting point of view.
What is not fine, is the possibility to delete any document at all. I think we should not be able to modify permissions for the Deleted Document Doctype and to delete a company once it has been created to be more compliant.
The french law also requires to have a log of every printed invoices.
There still work ahead of us…
No, ** correlative numbers ** (if your translator gives you another definition is incorrect) …
Correlatives are not odd numbers, or fibonacci numbers … are sequential numbers. I do not understand how difficult it is to understand this …
This has a simple approach, to make the series numbering in erpnext can be strict (correlative) or open (as it is now). Tryton and other erp / financial software is how they address this functionality. If erpnext allowed it, the invoice numeration would be valid for any country.
ERPNext does not create gaps in invoice numbers, it’s the users that can create gaps in the invoice numbers.
I still believe that if there must not be gaps in invoice numbers, proper internal controls can take care of that. For example,
- under no condition should invoices be deleted.
- if you are preparing a disposable invoice, use a quotation instead. If the quotation is finalised, create an invoice from it.
Definition of correlative
1 : naturally related : corresponding
2 : reciprocally related
3 : regularly used together but typically not adjacent the correlative conjunctions either … or
There are 3 possible interpretation to correlative
Definition number 3 : used together but typically not adjacent
If SAP can get away with this design, and if fortune 500 companies can adopt the software, and if ERPNext follows in the footsteps, i think its a great design. Thank you for adding that bit of experience and authenticity to the design. As usual kudos to ERPNext team,
As far as keeping log of eveytime an invoice is printed…which i don’t seem to understand this concept in the era of photocopying…
Whats next, I wonder, we need to print invoices on currency paper?
man you are taking this as personal, when the rest of us are looking for solutions to repect de law in our countries …
I understand the opposite, thanks for explain it
But as said @chdecultot delete will be not permited, and i understand that now is possible or can be block this by perms form example? Could be an temporaly workaround.
Not at all.
I’ve just figured out that the amend function (never used it before) does two things:
It cancels the current invoice.
it makes a copy of the current one and gives it a number in a new range.
I agree with you that an invoice can’t be deleted and I think that cancel an invoice should also not be allowed unless it’s still in draft mode and the invoice hasn’t be saved jet and therefore doesn’t have a number.
What’s the goal of having draft/pro forma status? I still think draft should be created whitout number. The number has to be assigned if and only if invoice will be submitted
I totally agree