Cliniko – Writing off bad debts

Most of us have had to do it at one stage or other – writing off an invoice issued to a customer because we are just never going to get payment.

Writing off bad debts is relatively straight-forward in Cliniko. I think because it’s not something you do every day, you do feel a bit of dread at the thought of having to do it. But fear not and read on for some simple instructions to get those bad debts dealt with.

Step by step instructions:

Head to SETTINGS and then BILLABLE ITEMS. If you don’t see the option to select SETTINGS on the left-hand side then this is because of the level of user access that you’ve been given.

From here create a new Billable Item by clicking on the ADD OTHER button. Set the price at “0”.
For those registered for GST you will probably want to create one new Bad Debt item called “BAD DEBT with GST” (the tax box should be GST 10%) and one called “BAD DEBT no GST” (the tax box should be N/A).

Make your way to the Invoice you want to write off and open up that invoice. At this point I like to write down on paper the amount and Invoice number, just in case I get interupted part-way through.

Click on the REVERSE button up the top.

What you will see next is Cliniko’s version of a Credit Note. If you haven’t dealt with credit notes before – don’t let this scare you off. Credit notes are the perfect way to adjust or “0” out an invoice whilst still keeping proof that the invoice existed in the first place. This new Credit Note will display the same Item name and amount as the original invoice, but the quantity will now be showing as a negative number. Go ahead and click the REMOVE button to the right of that line.

Add your new billable item called BAD DEBT. Enter the unit price with a negative sign in front of it. The amount will need to be what you are writing off.

I always like to add good descriptions where I can and there’s a handy NOTES box where you can explain the circumstances surrounding the write-off of the invoice.

Click the CREATE CREDIT NOTE button and you’re done!

Extra tip:

Oh and if you’ve got Xero integrated with Cliniko, don’t forget to hop over to Xero and write the Invoice off as a bad debt in there as well. Reversals done in Cliniko do not feed through to Xero.

Festival Bookkeeping specialise in helping Australian small business owners with their Xero and Cliniko bookkeeping needs. You can find out more about us on our website:

Happy bookkeeping…


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