Suggestion to allow default tax codes for billable time entries


I’ve got a small issue with Manager not applying GST by default to my invoiced time (I have a professional services business).

I have to enter it manually on each line via a drop down menu. In my set up it is not enabled by default (ie each invoice by default appears to be GST inclusive). Sometimes I forget to add GST, and embarrassingly have to re-issue an invoice when I realise it.

I haven’t enabled GST inclusive by default, as the Guide ( instruct you how to.

I am sure it is something small I have overlooked, but I would be grateful if someone would point me in the right direction.

Wonderful software btw - perfect for my needs and, to my surprise and delight, free for the desktop version. A very happy migration from Xero for me.

Thanks to the owner and developer. Incidentally I would be happy to make a donation if a Paypal link could be set up.



Have you got the 0 Tax setting inc-exc box ticked

Nope - not ticked

I think you mean tax-exclusive. On tax-exclusive invoices, you add tax to the line items. On tax-inclusive invoices, tax is presumed to be included in the price, so Manager backs the tax out. Either way, though, the entire invoice must be tax-exclusive or tax-inclusive. You can’t choose line by line.

If you have items that are not taxable, for either type invoice, you just don’t select a tax code. For line items where tax applies, tax will be added to or subtracted from the line item amount depending on which treatment is selected.

What you really seem to be asking for is the ability to set a tax code to apply to all billable time entries by default. A potential complication from such a move is that all billable time may not be subject to the same tax codes. Some might be exempt (perhaps because the work was performed outside the applicable jurisdiction or for a tax-exempt customer). Some might be at different rates for similar or other reasons. The question is whether the convenience of having tax codes preselected so you don’t forget outweighs the risk of mistakenly leaving a tax code in when it should be deleted.

Thanks - that is exactly what I want - for GST to always be added. All my invoices require GST. None of my services are exempt.

How do I do this please


you could setup your various services as an inventory or non-inventory item with the default tax code set.
so when you select this service from the Item column when making an invoice, the tax code defined while creating this item is automatically populated under the tax column.

@sharpdrivetek’s idea about using inventory items will not work because that will create mayhem with various asset and income accounts. There is nowhere to draw the value of the inventory item from if it is a service. So this would materially misrepresent position and performance.

As for non-inventory items, those cannot be mixed with billable time entries. But that works very well for fixed price services.

Errrr - right.

I only sell time. No inventory, no product, nothing but time. Sadly.

So assume I am an idiot - is there an easy way to make all billable time and resultant invoices automatically + 10% GST?

Or is the only option to manually add it on each line of the invoice, as I do now?

The Guide says something about GST being added by default and you can exclude it by option, but that hasn’t been my experience. Personally I’d love to have an option to set +10% GST to invoices by default.



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No, there is no such method. I can see why this might be desirable, but cannot foresee all problems that might arise from implementing it. One such problem that comes to mind is how to handle work in progress. You have invested the time by the point when you make the billable time entry. So you have created an asset in the Billable time account. This is balanced by a credit to Billable time - movement. But there is nowhere to record the tax, because you haven’t invoiced yet, so the tax does not exist from a financial perspective. @lubos will have to determine if there is a way to remember to add the tax later. That isn’t, in general, how the program works.

I think you are referring to statements about invoices being tax-exclusive by default, with the option to make them tax-inclusive. I’ve described the difference in my previous post. If you have found something else, please provide a link to it so it can be corrected.

Thanks so much for taking the time to reply to me. You have been really helpful .

I see the point re billable time (and don’t much worry about that side of it), but it would sure be nice if, when you come to invoice from billable time, GST could be configured to be automatically added - and you had the option of setting that to occur by default.

To get to the heart of my issue - I need all my billable time to add GST when its invoiced. If I create an invoice from the billable time (great feature by the way) it doesn’t add GST. I have to manually edit the invoice to add GST to each line of (entry in) the invoice. That is not ideal for my workflow.

Re the

“I think you are referring to statements about invoices being tax-exclusive by default, with the option to make them tax-inclusive. I’ve described the difference in my previous post. If you have found something else, please provide a link to it so it can be corrected”

Yes I was - but we have been at cross purposes.

It was this section from the Guide that lead me to think by default all billable time would be treated as tax exclusive - and I made the assumption from the example given (see below) that tax would, by default, thereafter be added. Clearly that was not correct. As I understand your answer, GST has to be manually added at each line of the invoice.

So I am clear (forums - like email - are wonderful tools for miscommunication)

It was the last sentence

By default, unit prices on sales invoices are treated as tax-exclusive.

followed by this example

which led me to understand GST was automatically added to invoices by default.

I now understand from your excellent reply that for GST to be added you have to manually do that by editing the invoice line by line.

Or have I missed something?

Perhaps the developer may consider adding an optional feature whereby billable time automatically adds GST when it is invoiced, with the ability to remove GST in each line if required? In Xero for example I could set all time to be billed as professional fees, with the GST automatically added to the line entry once made. It was a useful feature.

Thanks again for taking the time and trouble to assist.


No, you have not missed anything. But it is important (not only for this situation, but others in Manager) to understand the two, distinct aspects of how the program works:

  • Tax-exclusivity/inclusivity, which applies to an entire invoice and can be set as a default, but applies no tax codes. This option only determines how Manager handles tax codes selected via other means.
  • Tax code application, which is always to a single line item. It can be set to a default tax code for inventory and non-inventory items on an item-by-item basis. This is possible because, at the moment a tax code is applied, the invoice is created, unlike billable time, where the entry may sit for extended periods in Billable time and Billable time - movement accounts.

Having beaten this topic to death, I will repeat what I said earlier: I can see why this could be an attractive option. So I will put it into the Ideas category. I will also change your title so it attracts appropriate attention.

Thanks - I appreciate your guidance and help.

Have a great day :smiley:

I suspect this is more straightforward than discussed.

Enabling GST by default would be at the invoice level, and therefore would completely bypass billable time etc … it doesn’t matter how the amount was generated (time, inventory, etc) … all the invoice needs to know is that GST is enabled by default for all items on all new invoices.

Doing it that way would solve the issue, correct? And then anything that must explicitly not be taxable can be edited to be tax free.

Perhaps when defining tax settings, we can specify that it should be enabled by default.

Countries like India seem to have two different tax types, so doing it that way would work for them too (?).

Personally I’m not charging GST at the moment. When I register for GST in the future, my understanding based on existing research on the topic is that I’d need it on all invoices. Regardless of whether the invoice is generated from billable time or not.


Hi Shane

Exactly! That seems like an easy and very practical solution to me.


this would be possible if all the items billed fall under the same tax category and rate of tax.
unfortunately, that is not the majority of cases.

it is better to have ability to define default tax codes for the items billed, which Manager already has for inventory items.
that being said, it would nevertheless help having the ability to set a tax code for a whole invoice when all the items billed fall under the same tax category and tax rate. some users would find it helpful as it will save a lot of time for them.

Well, I guess the point being made is it would nice to have the option to set + GST as a default for those of us whose items billed all fall under the same category and rate of tax ie personal services. I don’t mind if it is applied globally or at individual invoice level.

Great suggestion.


Ah, fair enough.

I’m from Australia, where pretty much all goods and services are taxed at a flat 10% GST.

If other countries have variable tax categories / tax rates based on the type of item, then my proposal wouldn’t be very suitable in those countries.


Just wanted to at a +1 vote to this idea.

I believe I am in the same boat as tomato. I only sell time, and all my sales invoices will need to have GST added to each line. As it stands, my workflow is:

  1. Create billable time entry
  2. Generate sales invoice from billable time entry.
  3. Edit sales invoice to add GST to each line/item of invoice.
  4. Save & submit invoice.

It seems like a good solution to allow +GST as an invoice template option (or something), eliminating step 3 from above.

Looking forward to hearing back on any update.

I realized Manager actually always had this feature.

In your Chart of Accounts, simply set default tax code for account Billable time - invoiced.

When you generate new invoice from billable time, Manager will automatically put your default tax code on each line item.

As for making amounts on invoice to be automatically “tax inclusive”, use Form Defaults.

Wonderful - thank you very much.