I've just asked the client how they want to deal with this, but...

I invoiced one company (client is affiliated with several related organizations... didn't respond to my request to make sure I was invoicing right company/address) and got a check from another company (with different address).

Suggestions on how to rectify so my records make sense?

  • What do your records look like? How are they messed up if the check comes from a different company? – TheSoundDefense Jan 9 '19 at 22:16
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    I don't use accounting software, and I am pretty new to freelancing. I am concerned about having correct records for IRS, etc. – blackyak Jan 9 '19 at 23:52

Talk to your accountant to get guidance with your problem.

If you don't have one, it is advisable to employ one.

While accounting software indeed doesn't care, many tax authorities may.

A country tag would be helpful.

In many jurisdictions there are strict rules to follow when it comes to invoices.

Invoicing one company and getting money from another (non invoiced) company may raise red flags (potential suspicion of money laundering or off the books work / contracts) or be seen as a separate income, requiring a separate invoice for that company.

If the company sending the money is a parent or sister company there may be less issues but eyebrows most likely will be raised when your books are audited.

  • Ah, accountants! My favo(u)rite people. For every $ I give them, they save me $100. OP, do not pass Go, do not collect $200, go directly to accountant – Mawg says reinstate Monica Jan 10 '19 at 8:14
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    Indeed, a proper accountant is something very valuable. – Odyssee Jan 10 '19 at 15:15
  • Even accountants hire accountants to do their accountants...erm I mean accounting...count on it (; ... Wait, what? – DigitalBlade969 Jan 10 '19 at 15:55
  • thanks! i'm dealing with someone in charge of some linked... philanthropic... companies... i got an email from him linking the companies, which was my main concern. I've been drawing unemployment and I may need to show that this check is pay for work I reported having done a few weeks ago... (I'm in California) – blackyak Jan 10 '19 at 16:47
  • Just as a parallel, here in Brazil a "unnamed" check can be cashed out by anyone. All we have to do to pass the check forward is write behind it our name and document number, and preferably to whom we are giving it to, so you can prove we paid with a third-party check (Otherwise there is no proof of payment, right?) – Moacir Jan 18 '19 at 19:53

When you make your entry in your accounting books, note that the work done for invoice I was paid for (on date Y).

You were paid.
Unless the check doesn't clear, I don't see what the problem is1.

You can note that it was paid by company Z if you want... but the most important thing2 is that invoice has been paid. If you don't have a spot for that oddity in your accounting software just write straight on the invoice - the accounting software only cares about the date and the amount.
I'd photocopy the check before deposit and staple the copy to the back of the invoice, but I don't do much freelance these days.


1 2 Except money laundering.
I assume that they are 'sister companies' owned by the same entity - if they aren't obviously connected, I would return the check (I think... again I'm not an accountant... you probably need one).

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