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Invoices/Bills - Override tax amount on line item where tax differs from tax rate percentage

Started by Matthew Woolnough in Feature Requests | Idea

Hi xero,

Would love the ability to override per line item the gst calculated rather than have to figure how much the gst inclusive cost is and then subtract that from the total to the amount with no gst included at all. Bank link has this feature which comes in handy for those with clients in food sales and health care

You can select whether to enter invoices as either inclusive or exclusive of sales tax (from the 'Amounts are' drop-down) and Xero will calculate the tax amount - is that what you mean?

Jules Desmond (Community Manager)

Hi jules,
no some transactions in australia (sorry not sure where you are and have had replies from o/s people who didn't quite understand the problem) dont have the full 1/11th GST. eg you might spend $105 including GST on health products and it only has $5 GST not 9.55, so in all the other software like banklink and myob you can manually override per line, in xero unfortunately you have to figure out what amount has gst on it and what doesnt and enter it over 2 separate lines. a complete pain in the behind.

Matthew Woolnough

@Matthew - thanks for raising this as a feature request. Yes, the way you're doing it now over 2 lines using 2 tax rates is the only way to achieve a specific amount of GST that's not the same as the amount calculated by an overall tax rate. Variable tax rates is something we need to look into.

If others are keen on this, please vote. In the meantime, here's is how you'd achieve this if you're in the same situation.

To ensure the correct GST entries for the Activity Statement, work out the portion included that’s GST free, and record it separately on the invoice.

Using the example above for $105, where only $5 GST is included - $55 out of $105 is subject to 10% GST, and the remaining amount, $50 is GST free.

When you record this transaction in Xero, select that the Amounts are 'Tax Inclusive' and enter separate detail lines:

$55, select tax rate GST on expenses
$50, select tax rate No GST (use No GST if you require this amount to be reported as a GST free purchase on your BAS. If you wish to exclude it from BAS, use ‘GST Exempt’)

Catherine Walker (Community Manager)

I definitely need a more complex tax setup as well to support the United States' multijurisdictional tax model.

Philip Denton

Hi All,

I have as similar issue but slightly different and need some advice please.

I have a bill from a supplier that has a credit applied after the subtotal and GST application therefore the GST is higher than 10% as a percentage of the value.


Invoice Cost $573.43
Credit $94.28cr
GST $54.75
Other Charges $4.05
Total Invoice $537.95

See attached link

I am using Shoeboxed, which is preventing the transactions form coming in to Xero as the value is rejected by Xero so I have to re-calc the GST value down to 10% of the total invoice value.

How do I then add the additional GST in?

James Nicolson

The plot thickens...or rather get's a little more confusing.

I have tried to enter the details of these transactions now by adding the credits etc and there was still a GST variation from the standard 10%. I think this is because there are certain elements that make up the invoice cost that are GST Free Expenses (it's for AGL Electricity charges).

When entering the first transaction I got presented with an + expansion option on the Bill which opened up a column to manually enter GST amounts. BINGO I thought, it just made the adjustment at the bottom of the invoice.

See Screen Shot


Then I tried it again thinking I had cracked the issue and now the + option does not appear?

See Screen Shot


I'm now pretty confused and hoping someone can shed some light on how to get this option back or why it appeared in the first place?

James Nicolson

I definitely agree that there must be the option to manually adjust the GST component. It's not often that it needs to be done, but there are plenty of situations where it would be useful.

To be honest, for me, it's almost a big enough issue for me not to change over from MYOB. Decisions, decisions...

Berwan Wieske

Agree with all the above. Car registration in South Australia is classic case where GST component on compuldory Third Party insurance is not 10% hence it is not as simple as splitting transaction into 2. Definitely need ability to manually override GST calc where reqd/appropriate

Mitch Uzelac

I've seen a number of other replies here and thought I'd share how we've dealt with this. I was pretty perplexed to start with as the GST auto calculates dependant on your chosen settings in the Purchase. I do feel though that we've ended up with a very easy to work process.

I've attached some screen shots to show how we've done it. Specifically I've added examples of South Australian vehicle registration @Mitch.

Registration 1 - directly imported from Shoeboxed...I just accepted all of the GST and descriptions as we really don't need the detailed breakdown.

Registration 2 - directly imported from Shoeboxed...manually set and entered all of the figures, GST and descriptions to provide the detailed breakdown.

Electricity 1 - directly imported from Shoeboxed...manually set and entered all of the figures, GST and descriptions to provide the detailed breakdown.

Hope this helps.

James Nicolson

I use @James method as a work around, but it doesn't always work.

For example; with importations of inventory.

1. 1st November: Payment is transferred to supplier for inventory purchase

2. 30th November: Inventory arrives and clears customs (and GST is charged on original purchase)

So how do you reconcile correctly and include GST when 50% of total customs bill is is just GST!?

Justin Snyder

Agree, in NZ like Customs invoices where the GST content is not necessarily 3/23 and insurance commission mixes of both life insurance commissions and fire & general commissions. At present we have to split them out and present two transactions,

Barry King

Yes having to manually calculate a split when the invoice says how much the gst is a long winded pain.
A quick single one line entry with the ability to manually input the correct gst amount is a must and can't see how it is a big problem if MYOB can do it!!
This is a NZ issue as well

Trevor Wall

Just moved to xero and this is a major issue for us... I assumed there would be an option to over ride GST amounts since it's common for invoices to include items that are subject to GST and items that aren't. We have a grocery store (fresh produce no GST/ detergent etc GST) so presents a real problem. BIG vote from me for overRide functionality.

Ben Sirl

Yes totally agree that a manual GST over-ride facility would make it a lot easier to account for GST when it is not a simple percentage calculation.

Sean McGarry

I totally agree. This is a major flaw. Australian Tax Law states that the GST you claim as an input MUST be the same as what the vendor puts on his invoice - even if it's wrong. It gets even more complicated where you have refunds and stuff as part of your invoice.


Merged: Manually change Sales Tax

Xero, please add the ability to manually amend the sales tax component of a transaction. Not having that functionality goes a long way to making tax report within Xero ineffective and inaccurate. Please please please...

Berwan Wieske

Hi there, has this feature request been shortlisted? When can we expect to have it included in XERO?

Natasha Mallon

Keep voting please to help drive the priority and raise the profile. I'd vote too if I could!
I'll focus on the Aussie side as thats what the OP is about and do appreciate there are other regions touched on in comments.
In a nutshell, to address this it's more about around updating Xero for different Activity Statement reporting options and methods.

Xero Activity Statement and GST
Xero currently uses the calculation worksheet method for Australian GST and Activity Statements; GST is 1/11th of an inclusive transaction value, regardless of the GST rate used or value calculated.
EG you had a 5% GST rate in Xero (available now) or override the tax amount (we could turn on for AU), the calculation worksheet method Activity Statement would calculate GST as 10% as intended.

Activity Statement updates required
So, the issue is more about ensuring the amounts flow through as they need to for reporting on an Activity Statement.

To properly support non 10% GST or override tax amounts, we need to offer an additional Accounts method option. This method takes the actual tax amounts from transactions and *11 to obtain an inclusive gross amount. (It's basically the other way around from what the calculation worksheet does.)

This is on the cards for us with the new reporting engine we're developing; an updated Activity Statement, different methods, linking to accounts and payroll etc. We just can't really offer these updates until we're well progressed with the roll out.

Non 10% GST rates and Activity Statements until we offer the additional option
Whilst we do not offer an Accounts method, we suggest using split line transactions. This has been explained earlier in the thread by Catherine.
This approach ensures the right amounts go to the Activity Statements and it works ok. It can be a pain if you have a significant volume of transactions where GST is not 10% or some other GST rate agreed with the ATO.
We've updated our GST rates for Australia since Catherine posted, but the logic is the same. http://help.xero.com/#GSTChanges

Xero and GST on Imports
In respect to GST on Imports, Xero caters for this already by using a specific tax rate(s) without you needing to split the transactions lines. Check out help centre for more information: GST on Imports Australia and separately New Zealand.
Hope this helps explain, cheers Tim

Tim Wright (Xero Staff)

Hey Berwan, are you referring to changing the actual amount of tax on a transaction, or editing the Tax Rate on a transaction? If you’re wanting to change the whole Tax Rate, there’s a thread asking for that here. Let me know, thanks.

Matt Oldfield (Community Manager)

We would like to be able to change the actual tax on a transaction. There seems to be rounding rules differences between countries. We are in the US, but use Trade Gecko in Singapore for importing orders from our websites and handling inventory. When imported into Xero some of our transactions are .01 off and have to be corrected. Right now we have to add an extra line and call it rounding error. I don't know where the actual problem occurs, but it would be easy to fix if we could adjust the tax amount on an invoice or purchase.

Amy Oden

@Amy, some rounding errors likes this can creep in via the API and when using multi-currency. Using another line item to fix this is the best option at the moment. Thanks.

Matt Oldfield (Community Manager)

It is also a problem for Google Play Store merchants, I have a monthly payment from Google which typically has 1000+ worldwide transactions, so some have VAT, others don't, I have developed a program to produce totals but obviously the percentage VAT of the total is different each month.

Roger Womack

I totally agree, I've literally been begging for this feature for 2 years since we switched to Xero. I've even considered switching to MYOB because the data entry is so painstaking in Xero! (and I hate MYOB).

Here is a comment I added to the Xero blog about this recently;

"As the person that enters all the data into Xero for both of our businesses I’d love to see the usability improved. The thing that I find most frustrating is the lack of calculation function in Xero. For example, one of our businesses is a restaurant and many of the receipts have a GST and a non GST component. The only way to enter this currently is to enter the total amount and then for the GST amount get a calculator and multiply the GST amount by 11 to get the total for that line and then when I go to the next line for the amount that is non GST I have to calculate the total minus the GST amount. I find this so tedious and bizarre for such a forward thinking software as Xero. As I understand most other accounting software autocalculate and autofill these amounts. Another thing that would help is if Xero recognized a particular Contact/Supplier and then autofilled the lines based on history, for example, type in Melray Meats add the total and the lines autofilled. This would make the job of the data importer so much easier. I’ve written in the forums periodically about this over a couple of years since we switched to Xero and every update I wonder if this will be the one to make data entry easier. Is this on the list of to do’s?"


Stephen Anderson

I run across many instances where manually adjusting tax is necessary - the options in Xero lead to errors on the Sales Report or the need to manually calculate refunds. I too hope to see this in a future update. There are not many things that Sage handles better than Xero but this feature is one of them.

Corrine Arthur

Just moving to Xero for one of my clients now. We need to be able to calculate in cells and override gst amount - phone bills, insurances, tax free food and water, some clients bill and put a total figure for reimbursable expenses and the amount of gst (not always 1/11th, as some exempt).

Deborah Brooks

Just moved to Xero. We have an online retail business with lots of post. The post GST almost never equals standard 10% so an override is essential for efficiently inputting this. I wouldn't have thought it is so hard for Xero to fix this! I changed to Xero from spreadsheets to save time, can't say I've got close to that goal yet.

daren castle

How does this GST override when you have received a bill that is part GST taxed and part non-GST taxed? Should I pay the bill in 2 separate amounts? So when I reconcile the bank statements, I can allocate each portion to it's appropriate GST with/without account?

John Finlay

I have also run across this (in the US), where sometimes Xero doesn't correctly round up sales tax amounts. It would be great to either have this fixed or be able to adjust the sales tax items by the penny or so discrepancy.

Gina Woodman

Xero please bump this up your priority list. We have a number of clients that would love this feature.

Marisa Toto

From a data integration with 3rd part products perspective not being able to enforce the GST at line level independent of the gross causes problems. A number of our major clients would want to be able to push data into Xero (via spreadsheet or the API) with custom GST levels at line level but this is not possible.

Robert Leonard

Hi Xero,

Please highlight this issue as priority. We are in Australia and many goods and services in our industry (real estate) are not strictly 10%. We would love the ability to alter GST on individual items entered.

Aishling Waldron

Is this feature in the works? I just started using Xero and after a day of having to separately calculate the GST component on an awful lot of transactions I honestly wish I'd started using a different software.

Adam Liaw

We NEED this feature added!!!

I.T. Solutions Tasmania

So so so need this feature ... however I am so pleased to report a fab and easy work around.

Our bill was $128.88 inc GST. The GST component was $99.28!!! So the actual cost of services (Telstra bill ... they always mess GST up!) was only $29.60. Crazy stuff.

Anyway the work around:
Expense a/c: Telephone (GST free exp) $29.60
Expense a/c: GST (or whatever your GST a/c is called) (GST free exp) $99.28

Subtotal $128.88
GST $0.00 (but it shows the $99.28 under the GST Chart of accounts if you look)
Total $128.88

This means there is no GST listed at the bottom, but if you go and check the GST a/c it shows up just fine! I hope this helps someone else :o)


Merilyn Bullen

VOTE FOR THIS PLEASE. It's a must have feature.

Mellissa Fyfe

This feature is NECESSARY in Canada. It is very common for Sales Tax to vary significantly from the calculated amount. It is time consuming and inaccurate to make up non-taxable amounts in order to balance a transaction. It looks more promising to not use Sales Tax Features and instead MANUALLY enter Sales Tax Collected, Sales Tax Paid, Sales Tax Instalments, and Sales Tax Rebates into separate GL accounts.

Joseph Milla

Add me to the list... and this is just on creating a purchase order, invoice, or bill.

For instance, the tax comes out to $16.5564.
I am billed for $16.56 (it rounds up due to the 6 in the above)
But xero shows my tax amount as $16.55 (it just seems to knock the last two numbers off the number without rounding.)

Jason Bergsieker

A definite must for us - many items do not incur GST in Australia, and calculating it out by hand is driving me crazy. I keep asking my boss to move us back to MYOB for this reason but he loves the online cross platform facility.

Kali Lawrie

This a MUST - it is so time consuming trying to split the costs over numerous lines just to get the GST to match with the GST we are being charged, a simple feature to allow a manual over-ride of the GST would be a time saving solution

Jo Sproull

In some areas, the sales tax is calculated on the sales total BEFORE coupons are applied, so the tax rate can be different on every transaction. The ability to manually enter a sales tax amount or adjust the actual tax would be helpful or we have to set up a new tax rate for every transaction.

Leif Nelson

I am a UK Gold Partner , and we dont have the problem - we can override the VAT! However, I have a few clients on the Global edition and its not there!

So the work behind the scenes has been done by xero - just need to turn it on in Global

Alan Davidson

Xero is not very flexible with GST - MYOB is much better.
There should be a supper user GST override where the GST can be set to what ever necessary.
I receive Health care goods with some items GST excluded so GST can be anything between 0-10%. My overseas shipping invoices have up to 80-90% GST as GST is not based on the invoice but on the value of the goods shipped.
Xero has to handle that! Can't understand why this hasn't been address yet.

Urs Burkart

This should be accounting 101. I have a business with much travel and other GST issues not being able to manually adjust GST doubles my work as I can not generate client invoices. so need to do them manually when adjusting GST. Add to my accounting cost as our business is audited!!!!!

Christ this discussion has been going on since October 2012.

Xero get off your ass and get it fixed!!!!!!!!


Max Scalia

+1 please, very necessary for sales tax rounding differences.

Ziyang Mok

Hi need this too, taking forever to do adjustments.

Deirdre White

Please implement this one on global. We have it in UK version and it works well.


Alan Davidson

My clients look at the bottom two lines & they don't add up .. this is simple stuff calculate the GST off the sub total easy.. & hurry up about it

Rod Stuart

Hi this would be good.

Similar situation. Trying to account for items such as business motor vehicle insurance. The GST does not seem to be 10%.

I am still having trouble figuring it out. As for example - The amount before GST is $72.79 and then adds GST of $6.62 Totalling $79.41 including GST. This is obviously not the standard 10% GST rate. So makes it hard to account for in Xero.

Thank you


PC Nerds

Xero calvulate gst line by line & with rounding a good percentage of the time the subtotal will be out of sync with the libe by line totals. Constitancy between software providers is essential
Some programmes use the subtotal to work out the gst not on a line by line basis & if you try to intergrate you will get conflicting conclusions. The people at Xero have seen complaint regarding this since 2012(xero forums) & if their approch is correct have not advised their partners/ third party developers to the irregularities or refuse to accept their glitch & correct the situation.

Rod Stuart


We have to pay collected sales tax on a monthly basis. Ability to adjust the tax amount will greatly relieve this pain.

Jaffer Hussainee

This would be so handy. Petty cash inputting is a classic example of where this would be used as well, all those staff amenities from trips to Woolworths! Banklink was great at this.

Kate McMeniman

PLEASE change this feature. I need to adjust the tax on things like GAS, ACTRA union payments, etc. Not EVERYTHING has HST on it straight at one percentage. Expense reports, some items have tax some do not.

Tiffany MacKinnon

Merged: Invoices/Bills - Ability to override VAT Calculation of line items

Entering purchase invoices is taking around 3-4 times longer than it used to in SAGE. Largely this is because I can't overwrite the VAT amount. I have a large number of invoices every day that include an insurance premium, so part of the invoice is non-vatable and the other part is vatable. I am having to create two extra lines for each invoice. The problem is that there is no subtotal on the purchase invoice for the non vatable amounts, so I am having to manually add up every invoice I receive. I am having the same problem where roundings on invoices make the VAT amount 1p different, and sometimes put the whole invoice out by 1p. And again, a problem when reclaiming mileage expenses where only the fuel element is vatable. I know there are ways round all these things, but having the ability to overwrite the VAT calculation would make it so much easier and would make much more sense.

Matthew Coates

Merged: Manual Sales Tax

It would be fantastic if we could manually enter sales tax. I just came across a receipt from duty fee's that are primarily added GST but I have no way to manually enter the GST. The Total is 520.04, but the GST is actually 109.01.

Jacques Beaudin

Hi, this would be great. I am finding it quite frustrating with different GST amounts to what Xero calculates. It takes considerably longer to input supplier invoices without being able to over ride the calculated amount. MYOB allows this, so it is do-able.

Colleen Sullivan

Xero informed me recently that you can actually edit the VAT figure. When the VAT column heading says 'Tax Amount', there is a '+' sign. If you click this then the VAT element per line is editable. Hope that helps :)

Matthew Coates

Thanks for the reply Matthew but I am assuming you are from the UK and your version is different as we only have a GST total at the bottom of the invoice/bill, we don't have a VAT column. Thanks anyway 😀

Colleen Sullivan

It's crazy that we can't just simply amend the tax amount against a transaction, this is just another thing with a "workaround" that eats into my time. For small businesses where you are fulfilling multiple roles anyway, this is extremely frustrating.

Kirsty Brooks

Yes This needs to happen it is basic accounting, i have gift hamper shop www.tasmaniangourmatgifts.com.au and the hampers are a single product containing some gst exempt contents like tea and coffee. So when we used myob you would just override the gst component but in Xero we need to seperate the gift hamper single product into 2 lines which confuses everyone! - Simply need a manual tax override it has been part of any basic accounting package for years!

Richard Scott

Thanks Richard, this is exactly what I mean. We are the same. Sometimes we deal with wheelchair lifters which are exempt but the freight and insurance aren't. It becomes very frustrating. I was using MYOB as well and really miss this feature.

Colleen Sullivan

UK seems to have this functionality. why can't it be enabled for US? disappointing this is a 2 year old thread with no resolution.

not being able to have accurate sales tax reporting seems a bit crazy for business accounting software. and fundamental.

Jeff Borkowski

How does it work for you in the UK software?

Jacques Beaudin

Jacques, there is apparently a small plus button which allows you to overwrite the calculated tax amount by line. Exactly whats needed. Not sure why it's not implemented in the US.


Jeff Borkowski

Hi All, Yes totally agree that to have the ability to manually adjust the GST that Xero calculates with what the amount should be is vital. To add to the problem, we have customers that are on a 0.125 cent rate. Xero rounds up total on lines and calculates the GST on those lines, however it does not round up the extended item cost. Nor does Xero calculate the GST on the subtotal of the invoice. In short, to us this means that the invoice subtotal shows one amount and a much higher GST value then it should be. When the customer enters our invoice to them, in their system, their program calculates the correct GST and we look like idiots because Xero calculates GST incorrectly and we cannot even manual adjust it like we could in MYOB.

Chashampal Gill

This forum started over 3 years ago, Xero are you there? Are you awake and listening?

Richard Scott

Christ this discussion has been going on since October 2012.

Xero get off your and get it fixed!!!!!!!!

Max Scalia

new to xero ....what a mistake......has anything been done about being able to manually over
ride the gst tax amount

Luke Calleja

Hey Luke.. good luck being new to Xero.. Apparently users have been requesting the manual override for GST for three years. Also as you are new user I suggest you are extremely careful putting in contacts because you are unable to delete them either.

Chashampal Gill

Invoice Sales - manually put in the sales tax instead of using standard tax rates for Contractors.
This was a request back in 2014. Why is this still an issue?
Request to open up the Sales Tax line. This way we can have the option to automatically calculate or just manually put in the sales tax.
This is helpful for sales contracts for contractors.

Marie Naegele

Marie, you could move to the UK! Or switch back to QB as I am...ugh.

Jeff Borkowski

How has this not been actioned since 2012?! Xero becomes pretty useless for managing expenses in Australia without this function.

Nick Cartledge

You are so right. Extremely frustrating Xero, and having to use extra steps to compensate for Xero inaccuracies with calculating GST on invoices is ridiculous. Their reply... the 'Tax dept approved our system'. hmmm would not be the first time the Govt has not investigated properly before giving approval.

Chashampal Gill

This really needs to be fixed. I am new to Xero but this will be a major issue and may need to change software if this issue has not been fixed in years!!! Any updates on fixing this? We vote but how many votes do you need to fix something?

Lauren Arcuri

I have just requested this over ride again through comments with their "make invoicing faster tips". Hopefully this will be implemented asap.

Colleen Sullivan

I can see that the ability to override the VAT amount already exists when entering a new BILL, however, I'm very keen to have the same functionality to be activated when raising/entering new receipts in Expense Claims. In UK we have expense claims that are part VATable, as a result I need to apply the %20 VAT on portion of an expense and not the entire expense amount on the receipt. Is there any way we can override the calculated VAT amount in expenses, that I'm not aware of?

Shideh Esfandiari

This needs to be fixed. Our customers are complaining about incorrect invoices as thier systems require correct net, VAT and total amounts.

Marsha Groth

Customer service told me to write inovices in Word.

It's insane that correct VAT and totals are on a 4 year old request list of an accounting software.

Even more so as this was fixed in the UK version of xero.


Marsha Groth

Uggh.. I just posted a question about this very topic and now I find that not only is there no solution but Xero has been asked to do it for like 4 years.

I don't get why this is so hard to implement - just let us override the value if we need to or add a field called tax adjustment or something where we can put in a minus amount.. yeesh

Darren Coulter

I too would appreciate a GST over ride so can insert own figure esp where I want to claim 100% GST eg with SA Veh Registrations

Sue Wheal

We do catering for a government department and they work out the gst on the ex gst subtotal and pay that amount rather than the total showed on our Xero invoice. It's a bit embarrasing when we can't supply an invoice that is correct. Not to mention it takes up time for them to correct our total and for me to fix it on our end.

So gst is worked out line by line, that is fine as I understand that Xero needs this to happen for certain things. But because it rounds the gst up and down per line it means the gst on the total can be out. Can't Xero do the final gst calculation based on the ex gst subtotal and fix any issues the line by line gst created using some behind the scenes fix its we don't see.

Rebecca Foleni

We have just moved to Xero a manual override of the GST is a must for us. External commission statements round out their GST I will for the moment used the calculated amount but this is technically not correct. Please can you do this fix so we can change the GST value.

Ed Youds

Xero - pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee put the UK VAT override function into the global edition. its a major headache for lots of users, and will INCREASE your licenses. Lots of global accountants will go to QBO instead!

Alan Davidson

Sorry but Xero have got to be kidding. This issue / comment was raised in October 2012, and still nothing is planned?!.... The rounding required is time wasting having to make individual entries for 1 cent and infuriating with whole invoices that round at line level and not in the totals and are out by dollars!... Please get onto this as the explanation I am now going to say to customers is that it is the stupid accounting program we use that cannot calculate GST correctly.

Chashampal Gill

Hi There,

Would really like the feature to over ride tax amounts as not all items are taxable or have different tax percentages. using multiple lines is time consuming and very difficult come tax remittance. The Sales Tax report wont work. You need to add up all the GL's etc.


Jennifer Arnold

PLEASE PLEASE get on to this XERO!

This drives me nuts having to enter 2 lines all of the time! It makes it so time consuming and complicates all of my records. I cant find whole transactions when i search after exporting in excel, I dont know what I have broken up and what I haven't broken up into 2 lines!

Jonathon Masel

Christ this discussion has been going on since October 2012 and falling on death ears.

Well there is a lot more competition since 2012 and I might just vote with my feet.

Xero get off your arse and get it fixed!!!!!!!!

Max Scalia

Is anyone from Xero even reading this or responding?? This is such a joke im sick of working out the amount gst applies to and have to put in 2 transactions

Victor Arcuri

It would be nice if SOMEONE from Xero could tell us if this problem is something that is going to be fixed in the future or not!!! No one responds to these.... and this is a HUGE issue and will be a deciding factor in if we keep Xero or switch to a program where you don't have to spend SO much time on just getting the Sales tax correct!!!!!!

Tiffany MacKinnon

It is such a shame that some good features in Xero are overpowered by the shortfalls. They seldom seem to read or care what we write, obvious by the length of time people have been trying to get action. I went through Technical support re this tax calculation issue and got the reply that the Australia Govt approved their system's method of calculating GST therefore they do not need to change anything....

Chashampal Gill

I'm a new convert from Moneyworks to XERO. With Mworks I could indicate line by line what GST I wanted included or excluded - a feature I just assumed would exist with XERO - please tell me I'm missing something! Almost every invoice I do has a mixture of GST inclusive and zero rated supplies.... how do I deal with that?

Katy Armstrong

Hi Katy,

Unfortunately you have to do this the hard way, till Xero fix this problem. I have designed a formulated Excel spreadsheet for my own use, I breakdown the cost based on its VAT/GST elements and let the formulas do the job then I enter the data line by line (copy and paste) into Xero. I can hear you saying this is double the job and the effort needed, but this way I can keep an eye on the tax elements and compare it to my spreadsheet to make sure system has worked out and registered a correct Tax. As I use Xero for my VAT and annual reports to HMRC, I need to be very careful that my GST/TAX is reflect correctly in the accounts.
Spend some agonising time and setup a spreadsheet, you wont' regret it.
Good Luck.

I hope Xero enable this functionality as this is currently defeating the object of "Doing Beautiful Business" with Xero.

Shideh Esfandiari

Hi Katy,

I posted the original question but it was more for rounding purposes.
For your situation, could you just change the tax account to "GST free item" for those lines which don't carry GST? I do this for any wheelchair components as they do not attract GST either.

Colleen Sullivan

Hi Xero Team,

Any news on the override the tax amount in the invoices?

Muhammad Firdaus Ibrahim


Jonathon Masel

Hi Everyone, noting the conversation has an international flavour, just wanted to raise that for Australia we'd be keen to enable this functionality for all transaction types and that if we do, we must also change the Activity Statement (BAS) in Xero to ensure that the right GST amounts are reported to the ATO.

There are 2 methods around how to calculate the GST to report to the ATO on the BAS.
1 - The calculation worksheet method for the BAS in Xero Business today, which takes gross/inclusive of GST values and dividing them by 11 to get the GST amount to report to the ATO.
2 - The Accounts method for the BAS, which takes the actual GST amounts on the transaction to report to the ATO, (derive an inclusive amount multiplying it by 11.)

EG. Lets say you have a transaction of $110 inc of $5 GST (you've overridden the tax amount with some new functionality, or the tax rate is in fact 5%) .
Using on the Calculation worksheet method for the BAS (1) , you'll report $10 GST. Because $110/11 = $10. It's the right calculated amount. But wrong amount compared to the transaction.
Using the Accounts method for the BAS (2), you'd report $5 GST. Which is what you want in this case.

Appreciate that this may be needed by other regions as well, we'd just need to have made the Activity Statement changes for Australia to support it. In the interim, you can split the transaction lines to ensure the GST is calculated correctly (which yes I know is a pain.)
Hope that helps and not too nerdy. Thanks for all the feedback too, it's great to know people want this and we do intend to look at the BAS soon to support the accounts method (amongst other things.)

Tim Wright (Xero Staff)

Finally, some light at the end of the long and dark tunnel!

Berwan Wieske

Mind you, similiar things were said in 2014 so don't hold your breath folks...

Berwan Wieske

@tim you have my vote for the Accounts method please! We have a lot of caravan parks that have a GST treatment of 5.5% for long term accommodation so we use a custom tax rate and the GST rec is a pain in the royal not to mention we lose the functionality to quickly import the correct BAS into Xero Tax.

Ian Walker


Sufri Hadi


Sufri Hadi

Sufri - your frustration is noted but there are ways around this! I'll get the team in touch to see what your situation is, and how you can account for slight rounding discrepancies.

Brittany H (Community Manager)

why don`t you just fix it instead of having you customers "work around" it"?? The work around suggestions xero gave me were absolutly useless up to the point where they suggested to write an invoice in Word....this is so absurd....I can`t get past that.

Marsha Groth

Xero.. Just have an open field in the sales tax area. or a button that you can press to override and but the correct amount in.
Tired of the work arounds.

Marie Naegele


Jonathon Masel

Merged: Automatic rounding on bills

Would be a great addition to have the ability, to enable/disable, in company settings if the system automatically rounds bill.

When entering a bill, and its total (on the right hand side), the system will automatically round if there is a variance of +-0.1 cents.

If the company settings can be disabled, then rounding will not occur.

We have many times where users enter bills and have type errors, and thereafter reconciliation to the bank is close to impossible task.

moshik grushka

Add my voice to this too. I use an addon called "Harvest" to do time tracking and invoicing. Harvest is linked to Xero and copies invoice and payment details directly to Xero, but there is often a GST rounding difference between them. Harvest appears to calculate GST on the total and Xero appears to calculate it per-line. My clients always pay the Harvest total.

Need to be able to override the GST amount in Xero please!

Mat Fitzsimmons

Any updates Xero?

Jonathon Masel

Hi I'm new to Xero. I have calculated all my insurance monthly payments for the year and worked out the GST component. Now I get to Xero and find I can't change the GST amount. So not I have to go back and find all my insurance and recalculate the GST and nonGST components and put them in for ONE entry in the year. Why can't you just have one override GST button. This makes sense. Fire services levy, registrations for heavy vehicles. These all have components that are not subject to GST but are a mixed invoice

Debbie Sadler

Hi Debbie, Welcome to the Xero family!

Can you help me understand this a bit more, have you already paid the insurance up front and you are just spreading the whole payment over 12 months or are you paying off the insurance monthly? Are you on cash or accruals for GST?

If you have paid the amount in full i reccomend making a prepaid insurance account on the balance sheet and coding the bill to this account making sure that you have broken down the insurance bill by having 1 line for the 10% GST component (GST on Expeneses) and 1 line for the stamp duty component ( GST Free Expenses ). You can then manually journal out each month 1/12th of the net insurance amount to insurance eg dr insurance cr prepaid insurance.

If you are paying the amount off monthly i would suggest that you do the following going forward

Set up a reoccuring bill in Xero and have the bill split out the GST (GST on exepenses) and Stamp Duty component (GST Free Expeneses).

You can then match the reoccuring bill to your live bank feed.

Please note that this will change slightly if you are on an accruals basis as you will want to claim the GST up front and not in every payment.

I hope this helps



Ian Walker

Hi - did you ever get an answer to this. Its a pain & time consuming - Xero keeps rounding my bill when it is exactly the same as the supplier invoice. Thanks.

Sandra McIntyre

Xero support team.
Any chance for a respond / a work around the automatic rounding?

moshik grushka

Merged: Common-sense tax rounding

Tax seems to be a cent out sometimes. I'll have a total of 2500.00, then it will have 13% tax (Ontario Canada HST) being calculated at 324.99 instead of 325.00. Throws the total due out by a cent and several clients have raised concerns about the total being wrong. This has only been happening for the past few months. I'm sure it's because it's calculating tax on each line rather than just calculating the tax on the taxable total. But totaling the rounded amounts will lead to issues like this. Surely this can be corrected?

Jake Cormier

To manually override the GST would be very helpful. It is time consuming calculating the GST & GST Free proportions as well as entering a separate line especially on bulk data entry.

Having this option in the Reconcile page as well would be even better!

Rebecca Green

Hi Xero

Please could you calculate the GST correctly, based on the legal requirement of having the calculation based on the sub-total, not per line. This is extremely irritating and also creates the impression that one is over-charging. Currently this is a problem on around 50% of the Xero invoices I'm dealing with per month and I find this level of failure unacceptable.


Brenda Campbell

One of our clients was so annoyed with incorrect tax calculation that we had no option but to stop using Xero for managing their accounts. An override option would have solved this problem.

Jaffer Hussainee

I'm not interested in an override option as that still leaves having to calculate the GST for every invoice to see if it's correct and then putting in a manual fix..hundreds of invoices every month.. not much fun! I'm interested in them getting it correct in the first place as my company's supposed to be saving money with this programme, not having to do things manually. We're about to go onto Xero and I'm baulking because of the extra work that'll be involved. One of our companies is already using it (hence the 50% failure figure). It's not a good look with customers as it seems like we're "crooking".

Brenda Campbell

The per-line vs subtotal tax calculation is an interesting issue.

I use the supported app "Harvest" for time tracking and invoicing (based on time). It generates invoices and calculates GST (10%) based on the invoice total, not per-line. It then sends out the invoices to my clients, and copies the invoice data to Xero.

Problem is, Xero then recalculates the GST per-line, and rounds the GST per-line to the nearest cent, so sometimes the GST total amount in Xero doesn't match Harvest.

The client then pays the invoice, and it's not the correct total according to Xero, so I have to make minor adjustments to write off 1c here and there. This is compounded by the fact that I can't adjust the GST in Xero. Having to make these minor adjustments is an annoying step that shouldn't be necessary.

Mat Fitzsimmons

I might note that I've raised this issue with both Xero and Harvest last year, and they both basically pointed at each other, so I got nowhere.

Mat Fitzsimmons

It actually may be instructive to include the info I received from Xero:

"Hi Mat

Thanks for sending through the screenshots, they were very helpful.
Please note that in Xero, GST is calculated separately on each line of the invoice, bill etc. These line amounts are then rounded to the nearest cent. The GST on the overall transaction is total of the individual line GST amounts.

As you are aware you can adjust the total GST by adding a rounding adjustment, either as another line on the transaction, or when reconciling it.

This approach is consistent with both ATO requirements and other accounting software applications. However, it can mean the Total GST on the overall transaction varies by a few cents, when compared to an amount calculated on total taxable amount of the transaction. This small variance can be adjusted by a rounding adjustment if needed.

As you are using an Add-on to bring Invoices across, Xero will still follow the approach above with regards to rounding, 

Since Harvest designed the integration with Xero, it would be best to discuss this issue with them to see of they can adjust the rounding to match that of Xero.

I have included a link below to their website.

Harvest Website: Connecting to your Xero account

If you have any further question splease feel free to contact us."

Mat Fitzsimmons

If you need to calculate the tax amount manually, who on earth calculates it using per line basis? Imagine having 10 lines, good luck to you. Xero isn't acting for the users interests. It doesn't care, honestly.

Sufri Hadi

The answer is to have all invoices with one line only! Imagine what the statement will look like!

Brenda Campbell

It's obvious, xero doesn't care. They keep giving the same generic answers and stupid work around suggestions. I don't get it. One of thier excues is that it takes time to change things due to programming - which I get. But obviously they do find time to implement entirely new features (eg. adding multiple item lines in an invoice). But no time to fix an actual problem of the 1+1=3 kind? I don't get the logic behind that, I really don't. Especially since there seems to be an xero version for UK (?) users that actually has a fix implemented where you can adjust the total just like we can do in bills.

I really would like to know why xero simply refuses to fix this. This thread is 4,5 yers old and nothing happens.

Marsha Groth

Thanks Marsha - I'll check on that UK version for all of us. We start today and I can't say I'm looking forward to having to deal with this problem all the time as we have enough hassle with suppliers' invoices being incorrect because of it.

Brenda Campbell

I also seriously need this. I do the accounts for a Coffee shop & Restaurant in South Africa where a lot of purchases are VAT exempt (brown bread, milk, etc). Therefore my VAT/GST is not a straight 14% of the Total Charge. I desperately need a functionality to manually override the Tax amount. I have a lot of invoices every month, and this work around option is very painful and time consuming. Very surprised that Xero doesn't have this. I believe, even SageOne has this function.

Anton Velleman

if i tell my employee to buy it from amazon, the tax is different for every item. Sometimes, there are discounts to shipping. Sometimes there's no tax on 3rd party vendors. spent an hour trying to figure out the tax.

abby abby

This issue has been open since Oct 20, 2012.
Not only is open but the community has actively and repeatedly asked for this feature.
Xero has not done anything about it for almost FIVE YEARS
I therefore doubt that Xero listens to the community's requests.

Jaffer Hussainee

In a perfect world this feature wouldn't be necessary but unfortunately suppliers are inconsistent and often charge a sales tax amount that isn't based in any sort of reality of the tax percents that are in place. I would need to create a large number of tax rates to accommodate all of these wrong tax charges that I receive.

Heather Jewell

You have missed the point completely. What we are asking for is for the calculation to be correct. It doesn't matter what the tax rate is. Xero is calculating the tax per line, instead of on the sub-total. It's that basic!

Brenda Campbell

Saddens me that pretty much every community forum I visit I see the same complaints raised over and over again.
Shame on Xero and their management team that they do not appear to be concerned about their clients as well as producing a software that is fit for purpose.
All of us have been duped into buying a package that doesn't do what it should thanks to superior marketing... well at least Xero got that right.
Posted 4th August 2017

SQR Security Solutions Ltd

I know there's been quite a bit of discussion here team, and please know we're continuing to keep an eye on the feedback here, and through other channels.
I do want to reiterate what's been previously mentioned - although it may not be practical for everyone here, calculating tax on a line-by-line basis is completely legal and within regulation.
In tow, for AU organisations if we were to allow an override function right now your GST in the BAS would be incorrect! - We are currently working on simple BAS that will remove this issue a little down the line.

On a nicer note, I'm pleased to announce that we recently extended the tax adjustment feature that's available in the UK edition to the Global edition of Xero. Now, when working in the global edition of Xero you'll be able to adjust the tax if not quite correct by clicking the small '+' icon in the Tax Rate column which'll open the Tax Amount column - More detail in our help centre :)

Kelly M (Community Manager)

With all due respect Kelly. This issue is now in its 5th year.

Totally pathetic.

Max Scalia

It took me about 2 days of working with the programme to discover the problem and to find you have all been battling with it for years with no fix...well it made a big dent in my confidence in the programme for the future.

Brenda Campbell

Yes this is a no brainer. It is broken, It needs fixing
I cant be sending invoices to customers where the total is simply incorrect.
Trying to pretend its not broken because it is legitimate way of calculating tax does not stop it being broken.
Fix it.

The override idea is not a solution it is a work around
Solution : round the line items, calculate the total from the unrounded line items.

Paul Wilton