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Accounting dates in FreeAgent

This article explains what accounting dates are and how to view or edit your business’s accounting dates in FreeAgent.

You’ll need to have full (level 8 access) to your FreeAgent account to be able to view or edit accounting dates in FreeAgent.

What are accounting dates in FreeAgent?

When you set up your FreeAgent account, you'll have entered a company start date, company trading start date (if applicable), first accounting year end date and FreeAgent start date.

Company start date

The ‘Company Start Date’ is the day that your business officially started. If your FreeAgent account is listed as a sole trader or partnership, this will be the same date that you notified HMRC that the business started trading. If your FreeAgent account is listed as a limited company, this will be the incorporation date for the business, which can be found on the certificate of incorporation issued by Companies House.

Please note that you won’t be able to change this date once you’ve filed a VAT return or marked one as filed.

Company trading start date

If your FreeAgent account is listed as a limited company and your company started trading on a day after its incorporation date, you will need to enter that date in the ‘Company Trading Start Date’ field. If your company started trading on its incorporation date, leave this field blank. If your FreeAgent account is listed as a sole trader or partnership, you won’t see this field.

Please note that you won’t be able to change this date once you’ve filed a VAT return or marked one as filed.

First accounting year end date

The ‘First Accounting Year End Date’ is the date that you want FreeAgent to prepare your first accounting year to.

If your FreeAgent account is listed as a sole trader or partnership, the year end date in most cases will be 5th April, to coincide with the tax year. If you’re unsure which date to choose, please check your HMRC personal account or speak to your accountant.

If your FreeAgent account is listed as a limited company, the year end date will be one year from the end of the month in which you started the company, unless you've filed a form with Companies House to change your year end date. For example, if your company start date was 5th June 2020, your first accounting year end date would be 30th June 2021. If you’re unsure which date to choose, please check with Companies House or speak to your accountant.

The date that you enter as your ‘First Accounting Year End Date’ will be used by FreeAgent to set the year end for future years too. For example, if your first accounting year ended on 30th June 2021, FreeAgent will prepare your accounting reports to 30th June 2022, 30th June 2023 etc.

Please note that you can change this date as long as there are no account locks in place.

FreeAgent start date

The 'FreeAgent Start Date' is the date from which you're going to start keeping your books in FreeAgent. Your choice of date will depend on whether your business is new or existing.

If your business is new or if you’ve been trading for less than a year, you may decide to start keeping your books in FreeAgent from the start date of your business. If you’ve been trading for longer, you may choose the start of the most recent accounting year.

Please note that you won’t be able to change this date once you’ve filed a VAT return or marked one as filed.

Viewing or editing your accounting dates in FreeAgent

To view your accounting dates in FreeAgent, select 'Settings' from the drop-down menu in the top-right corner and then select 'Accounting Dates'.

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Here you can view your business’s accounting dates and edit them if necessary.

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Please note that you won’t be able to change the company start date, company trading start date or FreeAgent start date once you’ve filed a VAT return or marked one as filed. You can change your first accounting year end date as long as there are no account locks in place.

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