Do your business transactions involve a lot of cash? Because cash transactions are, or can be, anonymous, the IRS takes a special interest in “cash intensive” businesses. One indication of this interest is the “Cash Intensive Businesses Audit Techniques Guide” developed by the IRS. The goal of the guide is to assist IRS examiners in identifying specific issues, business practices, and examination techniques for businesses that primarily deal in cash.

What does that mean for your business? A cash business is generally not required under tax law to use a specific type of bookkeeping method. Still, the added scrutiny means you’ll want to be particularly careful about maintaining books and records that accurately reflect your income and expenses. Here are three suggestions to get you started.

  • Maintain original source documents. Sales invoices and cash register tapes are records that support the amount of income received. Tie these totals to your bank deposits. Remember to track income from electronic transactions, including digital currency, as well as non-cash activity such as bartering.
  • Support non-income cash inflows. Document loans you make to the business with written promissory notes. Keep records of amounts you receive in the form of refunds, rebates, and insurance policy payouts.
  • Practice good internal control. Internal controls are the processes you put in place to maintain the integrity of your accounting information. For example, having more than one person involved in receiving and recording income can help minimize the risk of errors or inadvertent misreporting.

Please give us a call for more recommendations and guidance on establishing and maintaining a bookkeeping system that can help you support the income and deductions you report on your tax return.