Suspense Account Definition & Meaning

suspense accounts definition

Hold the partial payment in a suspense account until you contact the customer. When you find out the invoice, close the suspense account and move the amount to the correct account. Sometimes, you don’t have all the necessary information for accounting. Missing or incorrect details can derail your bookkeeping efforts, but you need to record every transaction.

Is suspense account a real account?

Answer: suspense account is a real account.

Though entries in ledger accounts were correctly made but their balances were shown incorrectly in the trial balance. When trial balance was totalled it did not balance, which resulted in a suspence account being opened. The suspense account will be written off from the books of account after all of the errors have been detected and corrected. Given the nature of clearing accounts, you should review clearing accounts on a monthly basis, regardless of balance. If you have taken over the accountancy for a company and they have a suspense account it is important to ensure that these amounts are explained, identified, and finally removed and placed in the correct account. You might be unsure about which department of your business to charge, so you place the amount in a suspense account. If you’re unsure about where to enter a transaction, open a suspense account and talk to your accountant.

What Is A Suspense Account In Accounting?

Transactions are entered and bookkeepers then transfer the amounts to the appropriate income or expense account. However, suspense and clearing accounts have entirely different functions. Clearing accounts are used to hold transactions for later posting and ensure information is recorded correctly and completely. A suspense account is used when the proper account cannot be determined at the time the transaction is recorded. It can also be used when there is a difference between the debit and credit side of a closing or trial balance, as a holding area until the reason for error is located and corrected. Suspense accounts are used when your trial balance is out of balance or when you have an unidentified transaction.

This lesson will illustrate some common uses for suspense accounts with examples. Aging and business justifications categories are customizable, and reports identify high-risk items across multiple suspense accounts at one time.

Definitions & Translations

Most business suspense accounts involve receivables and payables, like the examples above, but there are also other uses for suspense accounts. Some banks will not apply partial payments to customer mortgage accounts because of doubt as to the proper amounts to apply to principal, interest, and escrow.

  • After entry, the items are filed in a suspense file according to the terms for payment.
  • Without posting such transactions, there may be transactions that are not recorded by the end of a reporting period, resulting in inaccurate financial results.
  • Suspense account , an account in which receipts or disbursements are temporarily entered until their proper position in the books is determined.
  • A trial balance is the closing balance of an account that you calculate at the end of the accounting period.
  • Clearing accounts can also be used in a way for accounts receivable.
  • A suspense account can also hold information about discrepancies as you gather more data.

Similar to business suspense accounts, brokerage suspense accounts temporarily hold funds while transactions are completed. In some cases, a borrower deliberately makes partial payments, by intentionally dividing his monthly payment into two chunks. In such cases, mortgage servicers can use suspense accounts to house the first partial payment until the second payment is remitted. After receiving sufficient funds to make a full payment, the mortgage servicer then applies the combined balance to the correct account. A mortgage servicer may use suspense accounts to hold funds when a borrower falls short on a required monthly loan repayment, where the suspense account functions as a catch-all vessel that secures the funds. The basic difference between a suspense account and a clearing account is that a clearing account is zeroed out.

What Is Cash Book?

Errors 6 to 9 also require journal entries to correct them, but one side of the journal entry will be to the suspense account opened for the difference in the records. For example, a clearing account used to record utility expenses may be closed monthly. Amounts recorded in suspense accounts are held there only until uncertainties are resolved. A suspense account may be closed at any time rather than on a fixed schedule. If a business fails to keep accurate records of transactions, chaos is the likely result. You could be faced with angry customers whose payments haven’t been credited and vendors demanding payment for supplies you’ve bought.

When you find out which customer made the payment, debit the Suspense Account for $500 and credit your Account Receivable customers account for $500. This closes out your suspense account and posts the payment to the correct customer account. Sometimes, amounts or costs are put into a clearing account, and then those respective payments are moved or transferred into a more appropriate account afterward. Clearing accounts are also used to verify the endless amounts of expenses and income.


If so, the liability suspense account is classified as a current liability. It is useful to have a suspense account, rather than not recording transactions at all until there is sufficient information available to create an entry to the correct account.

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A suspense account is an account used to temporarily store transactions for which there is uncertainty about where they should be recorded. Once the accounting staff investigates and clarifies the purpose of this type of transaction, it shifts the transaction out of the suspense account and into the correct account. Suspense accounts contain entries where there are uncertainties or discrepancies. For example, if an individual makes a deposit but accidentally writes down an account number incorrectly, that money will be housed in a suspense account until the error is corrected. In another scenario, a customer may issue a payment, but fail to specify which invoice they intend to pay off with those funds.

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For example, when a transaction is carried out and coded incorrectly, they cannot be processed immediately. Other conditions may also include missing an account number on a loan, deposit transaction, or even a check drawn on a depositor’s account not adequately endorsed or signed by the depositor. When you record uncertain transactions in permanent accounts, you might have incorrect balances. Suspense accounts help you avoid recording transactions in the wrong accounts. You also avoid failing to record a transaction because of missing information. AccountDebitCreditSuspense Account1,000Accounts Payable1,000Later, you decide to bill the supplies account of the purchasing department.

suspense accounts definition

A suspense account is used as place to temporarily carry doubtful receipts or funds that are in “suspense” until servicer makes decision on how to permanently allocate or classify. It is often suspense accounts definition used to hold less than full installment payments or payments received while account in default. To account for the payment, open a Suspense Account and credit the account with the full $500.

A magnetic suspension prototype has been realized in Naples to check the correctness of our models and to verify that we take into account all the relevant effects. “At that point, after years have passed, it’s almost impossible to hold the contractor accountable using the suspension and debarment system.”. This year, however, the fair was in full blast again, and more frequented than ever on account of its temporary suspension. After such suspension the accounts of the agent were examined and various explanations offered by him in relation thereto. When I read yours of this morning, I could not help pitying you for the account you give of the dreadful anxiety and suspense you labour under.

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Today, online accounting and invoicing software like Debitoor gives you the tools to easily manage your income and expenses, from anywhere. When it comes to your transactions, automatic bank reconciliation can help you match your payments in an instant. Patriot’s online accounting software is easy to use and made for the non-accountant. When you get the information you need, reverse the suspense account entry and make an entry in the permanent account. This closes out the suspense account and posts the transaction to the correct account. Suspense accounts allow transactions to be posted before there is sufficient information available to create an entry to the correct account or accounts. Without posting such transactions, there may be transactions that are not recorded by the end of a reporting period, resulting in inaccurate financial results.

This typically arises when funds are received and there is doubt as to which account to apply them. The suspense account is also used when there is dispute as to which department of a big company should be charged with an incurred expenses. Banks and brokerages also have specialized uses for suspense accounts when partial payments are made on mortgages or when clients haven’t yet decided what to do with proceeds from sale of securities.

  • If one of these conditions exist, the transaction should be directed to a suspense account.
  • If the balance of suspense account shows the debit balance, it is recorded on an asset side in the balance sheet.
  • It is vital to understand that all the transactions are temporarily recorded in this account.
  • The primary difference between a suspense account and a clearing account is that a clearing account is zeroed out.
  • Harold Averkamp has worked as a university accounting instructor, accountant, and consultant for more than 25 years.
  • If the system is computer based error of type above can still occur but errors of type almost certainly cannot.
  • The suspense account will be written off from the books of account after all of the errors have been detected and corrected.

The amount of funds held in suspense account is referred to as the “suspense balance.” The error is reviewed and an alternate chartstring is identified with the help of the department or HR . Total accounts ended the quarter at $12.8 million, which does not include the nearly 700,000 commuter accounts that remain in suspense … The discussion of errors assumes the existence of manual accounting system. If the system is computer based error of type above can still occur but errors of type almost certainly cannot. Salary A/C———–Dr$6,000Suspense A/C—Cr$6,000The salary account will be increased by $6,000 and the Suspense account will be decreased by $6,000, as a result, the suspense account will be zero and closed.

  • The suspense account gives them a temporary place until they can be properly placed.
  • The expense will be moved by the Payroll Office via financial journal.
  • Allows a set of accounts to be prepared subject to the correction of the errors.
  • General LedgerA general ledger is an accounting record that compiles every financial transaction of a firm to provide accurate entries for financial statements.
  • The purpose of a suspense account is to hold amounts that cannot be categorised, so it would not be possible for each department to have a suspense account.

If you don’t have an account for a specific expense then you may need to create a new one within your chart of accounts. Any amount that is posted to the suspense account should be there on a temporary basis only, as this amount needs to be investigated and posted to the correct account. Journal entry to close the suspense item and charge the expense to the correct department. A brokerage or some other account in which an investor deposits securities or cash while he/she decides how to invest it.

suspense accounts definition

Nor given us so disturbing a definition of what it is to watch the ‘silent film’ of other people’s lives, whether across a courtyard or up on a screen. That puts it in a bear market (that’s not a particularly official definition by the way … Rather than keep you in suspense, I’ll tell you what I think right now. In the short term, “quite … That is because women are given free membership while men must have a paid membership account to start sending …

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Suspense Account Definition & Meaning

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