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Level 1

Grant disbursements to recipients

Hi, I have a client who works for a cancer society. She wishes to send payments via QuickBooks to cancer recipients who qualify, ideally directly to their bank account. She would also like to attach an automated letter with the payment. What is the most efficient way to do this via QuickBooks Online Plus? 

6 Comments 6
Content Leader

Grant disbursements to recipients

Hey there, Lisbivens.


Thanks for reaching out here in the Community. You've come to the right place for assistance with QuickBooks and I can show you how to send payments to the patients directly through your account.


One option to get this done would be to first set up the patients as Vendors. You'll do this by:


1. Clicking the Expenses tab from the left navigation menu, then Vendors.

2. Choose the New vendor button in the top right corner.

3. Enter the necessary information and click Save.


Next, your client will need to issue bills from the newly created vendors to his or her self. You can do this through QuickBooks Online by:


1. Select Expenses in the left navigation bar, then Expenses again.

2. Click the green button in the top right corner for New transaction, and select Bill.

3. Choose your patient from the Vendor drop-down, fill in all of the necessary info.

4. Select Save and close.

* Remember, the client is creating the bill to pay them self. This is also the space where you can enter a memo or attach a letter to the patient.


Once you send the bill, your client will be able to pay via QBO straight to the patient. To pay bills in QuickBooks:


1. Click the Expenses tab once again, and make sure Expenses is selected at the top of the screen.

2. Choose the gray Pay Bills button.

3. When the Pay Bills screen appears, click the blue link labeled Pay bills directly from QuickBooks.

4. The next page that appears will give you options for what is referred to as Online Bill Pay and how you can pay through your QB account.


This article explains Online Bill Pay in even more detail:


After completing these steps, your client will then be able to disburse the grant money to the patients in the society. You know where to find me if you have questions about this process or anything else in QBO. Take care.



Level 1

Grant disbursements to recipients

Thank you so much! I didn’t think to just treat the grant recipients as vendors! My client will be very happy with the simplicity of doing this!



Lisa Bivens

Level 1

Grant disbursements to recipients

we are a nonprofit organization awarding grant funds to grantees.  I want to setup grantees in order to track each award, the total amount awarded and the balance.  Say we award grantee A with funding of $1,000, and grantee B with $5,000, then as certain tasks are completed by the grantee, they invoice us and we pay them up to the agreed upon 1,000 or 5,000.  how do i go about doing this? 

QuickBooks Team

Grant disbursements to recipients

Hello, amandadef. 


In QuickBooks Online it makes easy to keep track of grants and see the balance of your different funds at any given time. This is done through Class tracking. Classes form an additional layer of organization in your financial records, allowing you to categorize a transaction in more detail. With QuickBooks Online, you have several main categories for tracking your nonprofit finances: 


  • Bank and Credit Card Accounts – This is where money is received or spent. These accounts should be regularly reconciled to your bank statements to ensure that all transactions have been recorded. (You can also set up sub-accounts if necessary – for example, if you have several staff credit cards listed under a primary account.)

  • Revenue & Expense Accounts – Your revenue and expense accounts allow you to organize transactions in a way that makes sense for the operations of your nonprofit. For example, you might have accounts for membership dues, workshop expenses, and individual contributions. Accounts should be fairly broad categories that can continue to be used as your organization grows. Keep it simple, and avoid making changes to these accounts too frequently.

  • Classes – Classes allow you to flag a transaction (or part of a transaction) as belonging to a particular grant or fund. Each grant should have its own separate Class, which you can set up in the “Lists” area of QBO. To view only the transactions that belong to a certain class, simply run a report and click “Customize” to filter by Class. This will also tell you the current available balance of each fund.

By using Class tracking, you can categorize every transaction in multiple ways. 


 I would recommend consulting with an accountant or bookkeeper on this, especially when it comes to recording the grant correctly.


Our Find-a-Pro-Advisor page will be able to assist in connecting you with a certified accountant or bookkeeper that also specializes in QuickBooks: Find an accountant


I'll be right here if you have further questions. Keep safe and have a good one.

Level 1

Grant disbursements to recipients

thank you for your quick response! is this the best approach for tracking grants that we give to others?  i've seen various posting regarding this and a lot of them are referring to using 'projects'...

we will award individuals/organizations funds, then track the invoices that we receive from them as well as the payments we make to them over time up to that awarded amount, being able to see the remaining balance at any time...  is class or projects or a vendor better for this?  still confused....

QuickBooks Team

Grant disbursements to recipients

Joining the conversation to help with your questions, amandadef.


You mentioned that you receive an invoice from the grantee when tasks are completed. This is recorded as a bill in QBO so you can create a bill payment.


Out of the three (class, projects, and vendors), you can only create a bill for vendors. Projects on the other hand are created under the customer's side. This means that you can't create a vendor's invoice that's being sent to you by the grantee.


Also, class tracking is usually used if you want to add more categorization or classification to your transactions. 


If you need to pay bills to someone, you'll want to set them up as vendors. However, I would also suggest reaching out to your accountant for more advice on this matter. 


More details about the said features are discussed here:



As always, don't hesitate to let me know if you need anything else. We'll make sure they are taken care of.

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