"Scan & Save" the Receipts

Monday, January 19, 2015
Promote the "paperless" by the use of scanner!

Although it is not so difficult to paperless in-house approval documents and application form, there is a wall of law against the digitization (paperless) of documents received from the suppliers.

However, "Act of e-book storage method" of Japan (*) has been turned into expecting to be significantly revised in autumn in 2014. Although for the latest trend, I would like you to search by the words "scanner save revision" for it is in the middle of discussed in the government and Diet currently, however, the direction of the discussion as of January 2015 is as follows. Notably, "Store the documents of Contract and Receipt of more than \ 30,000, in paper!" will be lifted within 2015.

  • It will be alright by "Scan & Save" for important documents which they were saying 'Must store in paper!'
  • Regarding to "digital signature", also not needed anymore (timestamp and the input user ID will be still required)
  • Regarding "pre-application to the tax office", it will be no longer needed.
* Official name of the Act: Act on Special Provisions concerning Preservation Methods for Books and Documents Related to National Tax Prepared by Means of Computers (1998-2007)

The Nikkei (Nov. 5, 2014)
TOKYO -- Businesses in Japan will be able to keep digital copies of receipts and contracts for tax purposes as early as next year, eliminating costs for transporting and storing paper documents.

The government began coordinating with the business community on the matter last month. Companies must now store original paper receipts and contracts for seven years for amounts of 30,000 yen ($261) or more. The proposed changes let businesses keep scanned files instead, regardless of the amount...

...the Ministry of Finance plans to require businesses to introduce internal compliance mechanisms. It will likely obligate companies to scan documents promptly and to record the time and date of scanning. Digital copies will be kept for seven years.

Then, is it good enough only scanning all of the 'Agreements' which signed by procurement section or the 'Receipts' which Sales personnel brought back, and saving the captured data into the computer?

Things are not so easy. According to "Tax law amendment outline" by the ruling party, 'To ensure internal controls, establish internal regulations about mutual supervision, periodic checks and preventative measures, and administrative processings are based on it.' will be the requirement. That is called "Appropriate Administrative Processing Requirements", and in other words, 'a framework for the clerical work to be done properly' must have been established.

The following "Expense Claim" is a Workflow that contains digitizing of Payment voucher. It is also capable of Starting triggered by captured paper image using 'Scan to Email' function of MFP. (Let's talk about the transaction documents which are classified as "sales", in another occasion...)

[Expense Claim]

[Expense Claim:'1. Confirmation' screen]

Its mechanism is quite simple.

Email sent from Scanner to be incorporated to Workflow by API for [Email Start]. The sequence is, a clerk inputs the date of transaction and the payee (0. Payment Info/ Personnel), the personnel confirms them (1. Confirmation). Here in this sample, I have arranged a Step of Supervisor Approval anyway, however, it can be removed if the business is not required that much Mutual Supervision.

By the way, you should not be confused with "A. Scan & save" and "B. Electronic trading".

* "Scan & Save" (E-book Preservation Act, Article 4 Section 3)
* "Information of Electronic trading" (E-book Preservation Act, Article 10)

Cases like 1) Ordered on website, 2) paid with credit card, 3) got digital receipt, are "B. Electronic trading", and it has been allowed to Electromagnetic storage (electronic storage) previously. If you want to record such payments, let the personnel be able to enter the payment information by him/herself (1b. Payment Info).

There will be major changes in many companies if freed from the 'spell of paper storage' by amendment of E-book Preservation Act which is expected in 2015, so that become able to preserve all the 'Books' and 'Documents' into electronic storage. I guess there will be advantages to small and medium-sized companies and to startup companies because adjustment with accountant (audit firm) is easier. Anyway, I wish that dusty 'Receipt file' will end at '2015'.

<Books Related to National Tax>
Inventory sheet, Balance sheet, Income statement and other documents that have been created, in relation to calculate, organize or Closing.

<Documents Related to National Tax>
Agreements which received from the other party, Receipts, and other documents that conforms to these with respect to the transaction. And copies of self-created these documents. (Agreements on which total price is described, Receipts for money or securities, and the total amount is less than 30000 JPY will be Excluded.)

<Classification for Scan & Save>
a. Agreement, Receipt
Especially important documents out of the documents that directly linked to the flow of money and materials
b. Invoice,etc.
Documents that directly linked to the flow of money and materials
c. Quotation, Order, Application form, etc.
Documents that not directly linked to the flow of money and materials
* Images must be in resolution 200 dpi or more

[Data Items List]

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