Accounting documents - how long is the company to keep them?
The company's accounting documents constitute the basic material evidence, therefore they should be taken care of with particular care. The regulations clearly define which of them should be archived, how and for how long. Most importantly, they must be secured against damage or possible unwanted changes. For non-compliance with these rules, there are sanctions provided for in the Fiscal Penal Code. Read the article and find out how long the company is to keep its accounting documents.
Which accounting documents should be kept?
The accounting documents that the company must keep include:
approved annual financial statements,
documentation confirming the adopted method of keeping the books of accounts,
documents relating to fixed assets, credits, loans, commercial contracts, claims pursued in civil proceedings or those subject to criminal or tax proceedings,
warranty and complaint documents,
personal files of employees and salary files.
How long should documents be kept?
The regulations stipulate directly how long the company is to keep accounting documents.
According to Art. 74 points 1 of the Accounting Act, only approved annual financial statements are listed among the documentation that must be kept indefinitely. Other documents should be stored in accordance with the deadline specified by the regulations.
All accounting documents should be kept for a period of 5 years. Among them, we distinguish accounting books and accounting vouchers, both those relating to revenues and expenses. They constitute fundamental evidence of tax settlements. Documents documenting fixed assets under construction, trade and credit agreements, and loans are equally important. Documents relating to claims pursued in civil proceedings, or those subject to criminal or tax proceedings, constitute the supplementation.
In this time period, you should also list inventory documents, tax declarations closing the accounting year, and employee salary files.
The storage period should be counted from the beginning of the year following the financial year to which the document sets relate. However, in the case of tax documents, such as declarations or invoices - according to the provisions of the Tax Ordinance - the beginning of the retention period should be considered the beginning of the year following the financial year in which the tax payment was due.
Documentation resulting from the warranty and complaints should be kept for a period of 12 months, counting from the expiry date. This is the shortest deadline provided for in the Act.
The Act on Pensions and Disability Pensions stipulates that employees' personal files should be kept for 50 years from the termination of the employment relationship.
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