Requirement to keep proper records and accounts
You should keep proper records and accounts for 5 years so that the income earned and business expenses claimed can be readily determined. You must be able to support your records and accounts with invoices, receipts, vouchers and other supporting documents.
Records to verify income and claims for deduction
Records include cash register tape, daily sales record book and invoices.
Receipts and daily purchases record book.
You are not required to submit these records unless requested by IRAS. Upon request by IRAS, you may be required to substantiate your reported income and expense claims with records and accounts.
Producing data listings of your business accounts in Microsoft Excel spreadsheet format will help expedite any audit review by IRAS. If you are using accounting software or have engaged a book-keeper for your business, please extract or request for a copy of your business accounts and general ledgers in Microsoft Excel spreadsheet format.
The term 'accounts' refer to the trading and profit and loss accounts as well as the balance sheets.
Requirement to issue receipts
You may issue simplified tax invoices if the total amount payable for your supply (including GST) does not exceed $1,000. Please refer to Invoicing customers.
If you are not GST registered, you may issue receipts which act as proof of your sales made to customers. Receipts must be serially numbered with duplicate copies retained.
You do not need to issue receipts if you adopt practices that can ensure the completeness and accuracy of the recording of all your sales receipts. However, receipt must still be issued upon your customer's request.
Duration for records and accounts keeping
You are required to retain the accounting records and supporting documents for 5 years.
Failure to do so may result in:
- Expenses claimed being disallowed; or/and
- Additional income assessed by IRAS based on best estimate; and/or
Businesses with December financial year end
Records for period
To keep up to
1 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019
31 Dec 2024
|2023||1 Jan 2022 to 31 Dec 2022||31 Dec 2027|
Businesses with non-December financial year end, e.g. June, September
Records for period
To keep up to
1 Oct 2018 to 30 Sep 2019
31 Dec 2024
|2023||1 Oct 2021 to 30 Sep 2022||31 Dec 2027|
Where a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) has been struck off and dissolved, the partners of the LLP immediately before the LLP was dissolved must ensure that all books and papers of the LLP are retained for 5 years after the dissolution of the LLP.
Where an LLP is being wound up, the liquidator of the LLP must ensure that all the books and papers of the LLP are retained for 5 years from the date of dissolution of the LLP.
Financial accounts in other currencies
If you maintain your financial accounts in a currency other than the Singapore dollar, you should also file your tax computations and financial statements to the Comptroller in that currency.
However, in the Income Tax Return, you must declare the equivalent Singapore dollar amount. Please refer to the IRAS Circular on Filing of Income Tax Computations in Functional Currencies other than Singapore Dollars (PDF, 408KB)
Guides on record keeping
For GST-registered businesses, please refer to the Guide " Record Keeping Guide for GST-Registered Businesses (PDF, 297KB)" for the record keeping requirements for both Income Tax and GST purposes. The guide also covers requirements for keeping business records in electronic media and imaging systems.
Non-GST registered businesses
For Non-GST registered businesses, please refer to the Guide " Record Keeping Guide for Non GST-Registered Businesses (PDF, 334KB)" for the record keeping requirements for Income Tax purposes. The guide also covers requirements for keeping business records in electronic media and imaging systems.
Non-GST registered small businesses
IRAS recognises that small businesses have simpler business and tax matters. Small businesses that meet the qualifying conditions can adopt the "Simplified Record Keeping Requirements for Small Businesses (PDF, 500KB)".
Please refer to the Record Keeping Checklist (PDF, 64KB), which provides a summary of the different types of records required.
Record keeping self-assessment toolkit
IRAS has created a self-assessment toolkit to help businesses perform a self-review of their existing record keeping standards and to better understand the possible areas for improvement.
For Non-GST registered businesses, please download the toolkit (XLSX, 30KB).
For GST registered businesses, please download the toolkit (XLSX, 172KB).
If my business purchases a new accounting software, do we need to migrate all the accounting transactions recorded in the existing accounting software to the new accounting software?
There is no specific requirement for businesses to migrate the accounting transactions recorded in the existing accounting software to the new accounting software. However, after purchasing the new accounting software, businesses must continue to retain and be able to retrieve the accounting transactions that had been recorded in the existing software for 5 years from the Year of Assessment or end of the GST accounting period to which it relates. Other business documents associated with these transactional records, such as source documents, accounting records and schedules and bank statements, should be retained accordingly as well.