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Level 1

Confusion about BAS Suspense account

I'm on a trial account, trying to record a BAS payment (for GST and PAYG) for a BAS which was submitted before I started using Quickbooks.   My first thought was to add an opening balance to my GST Liabilities Payable account.  This would have been a simple solution. Unfortunately, for unknown reasons, the system will not allow this, sigh.  So I searched for help.


As per the bottom of this help article it seems I will need to create a BAS Suspense account (as per the image shown below).  There is no existing BAS Suspense account in my Chart of Accounts.bas-je.jpg


I assume I can put my PAYG Withholdings amount on line 3 (instead of the PAYGI shown).  However, I notice I can enter an opening balance on the PAYG Withholdings Payable account, so perhaps I can do it that way.  It's puzzling as to why I can enter an opening balance for my PAYG Withholdings Payable account but not for the GST Liabilities Payable.  I'd appreciate it if someone can explain this.


If I create a Journal Entry based on the example shown (with or without my PAYG Withholdings), should I create a BAS Suspense account as a current liability account with detail type "BAS Payable", and then record my payment against the BAS Suspense account?  Or will creating a second account of type "BAS Payable" interfere with my future use of the GST centre?


Am I on the right track?  Should this be so confusing?


1 Comment

Re: Confusion about BAS Suspense account

Hi there, Jana2.


Thanks for the detailed information. I'm here to provide further explanation.


Once the GST feature is enabled in QuickBooks Online (QBO), the system automatically creates default accounts. I've attached a screenshot for your reference.




The information provided in the article refers to generating a payable to your GST including your PAYG. Once you create a transaction, the GST amount will be recorded on the GST Payable account.


On the other hand, the GST amounts will be transferred to the GST Suspense account once you lodge a Business Activity Statement (BAS). This serves as your total payable to the government.


Please know that you're unable to use the Record Tax Payment feature on the GST centre if you're creating the GST amounts through a Journal Entry, as they will show up on the GST Payable and GST Suspense accounts. In this case, you'll want to record an expense transaction and use the Suspense to post this JE as paid.


Here's how:

  1. Click on the Plus (+) icon.
  2. Select Expense under Suppliers.
  3. Fill in the fields and choose the suspense account in the Category column.
  4. Enter the amount. 
  5. Choose Save and close.

You can also check out this helpful article: Enter, edit, or delete expenses.


That should do it. Leave a comment below if you have further questions. I'll get them answered.