Reconciling the bank statement to the checkbook register monthly is a good business plan. If you have problems reconciling the accounts then follow these:
- Print the Check Register for the date range you are reconciling. (Same as the date range of the Bank Statement)
- Place the Check Register report just printed and the Bank Statement side by side. Take the first item on the Bank Statement verify it is in the Check Register – if it is put a checkmark next to the item on the Bank Statement and the item in the Check Register. At the end any item that does NOT have a checkmark on either must be reviewed – (this will find the majority of problems)
- Items on the Check Register that are not checked off – they should be listed in the bank reconciliation as OUTSTANDING. (You could also have 2 items that are not checked off that cancel each other out. Neither of these items should be listed as outstanding on the bank reconciliation.) Review these items make sure none are duplicate entries and need to be corrected
- Items on the bank statement that are not checked off – this could be a timing issue – ie it hit the bank with an earlier date then the checkbook register. These items just need to be carried in Other Outstanding Transactions when doing the Bank Reconciliation and will clear the next month. Other possibilities might be missing deposits, checks etc… How you correct will just have to be on a case by case basis. There may be items on the bank statement that appear in the Check Register prior to the month you are reconciling – that is OK these should have been Outstanding Checks or Deposits on the prior months reconciliation report (You will verify these in step #3)
- Review outstanding transactions (deposits, checks, other) from prior month’s Bank Reconciliation Report. These should either clear on the bank statement or remain outstanding on the current reconciliation.
- Review the VOID checks on the Bank Reconciliation Report. The only Void checks that should be cleared are those where the void entry actually appears in the check register with a date prior to the end date of the statement. On program versions V18 and higher there are 2 entries to clear, and they are NOT always right next to each other. (the 2 entries will be listed. The first entry by the original date of the check and the second entry by the void date of the check. Abacus Accounting versions V17 and earlier there will only be 1 entry.
- Verify the beginning balance on the Check Register is the same as the GL Ledger Balance on page 1 of the Bank Reconciliation Report from the last month’s reconciliation: If they are NOT then an entry has been made in the system AFTER the last month’s reconciliation with a date PRIOR to the END date of the last month’s reconciliation. You then would have to review the prior months check register for changes. Easiest thing to do is print the check register for the prior months now and compare to the check register printed when the prior month’s bank reconciliation was originally completed. This will only work if they did print the checkbook register at the time they did the bank recon. If they have not printed the register, then just scan the register for the dollar amount, and/or look at the journal entry number for any that are out of sync with the rest. This doesn’t happen a whole lot.
- Verify that the beginning balance in Abacus Accounting is the same as the ending balance in old system – This only applies if this is the first reconciliation being done in Abacus Accounting and a prior balance from another system was brought forward.
- Verify any outstanding items listed as outstanding on the old system have been brought over to Abacus Accounting – This only applies if this is the first reconciliation being done in Abacus Accounting and reconciliations of the account were completed in the old system. (Outstanding items from the old system are entered in Abacus Accounting using the Demand Check Writer. Use the actual date of the check, payee and amount – the Checking Account AND Expense Account with be the cash account.)
- Completion of these steps will give an accurate listing of outstanding items. With this listing go back to the Bank Reconciliation and clear all items except those that have been noted in the above process as outstanding.
There are 2 parts to the trust reconciliation. First part is balancing the Check Register to the bank statement (trouble shooting above). The second part is done automatically by the system – the total of all Matter Trust Activity ledgers must total up to the Check Register balance also. If this does balance you will see nothing, and the system will let you Finish the Bank Reconciliation. If it does NOT balance a message will be displayed indicating what the total of the trust ledgers are, the Check Register balance and the difference. You will not be allowed to Finish. To determine what the problem is complete the following:
- Print the Check Register for the time frame reconciling.
- Print the Trust Report Detail Reports > Trust > Trust Report Detail for the time frame and the account being reconciled.
- Place the 2 reports side by side – take the first item on the Check Register verify that it is on the Trust Report. If it is check the entries off on both reports. Entries not checked on either report must be reviewed.