Feature request from German list: Disable editing of transactions

Graham Leggett minfrin at sharp.fm
Mon Feb 18 08:54:28 EST 2008

Thilo Pfennig wrote:

> Maybe this is a misunderstanding but what I mean is that if I make an
> entry into the account "bank" I think this should still be visible,
> because only if it wont there would be an error. I think oen should
> distinct the real bank account and the bank account in GnuCash. Sure
> these two should match, but for GnuCash the authorative one should be
> the GnuCash "bank" account, shouldnt it?

The authoritative account is the one that is considered "right" by an 
auditor, and that would be the bank statement, not the gnucash account.

 > If tentries are falshe the user should correct them but this should 
be visible.

For what purpose? The only thing an auditor is interested in is whether 
the account matches the bank statement. If the account contains a whole 
lot of extra entries that doesn't match the bank statement, that makes 
the auditor's life more difficult, and in turn you will get a bigger 
auditing bill at the end of the year [1].

It is only after the signoff / locking / reconcilation process that it 
becomes important to track changes, as this affects external procedures 
such as interim reporting and VAT returns.

Of course if a user wants to implement an "all accounts are locked" 
policy, then they should be empowered to do so, but it certainly 
shouldn't be insisted on for everybody.

[1] This I found first hand in a project, one of the basic requirements 
of the project was to reduce the auditing bill of the company concerned.

> If they are just
> editable without being visible this would make all accounts that
> interact with bank alsio being editable, because only if one can check
> both accounts for correctness one is able to make a statement about the
> overall correctness of the book keeping. At least thats what I learned.

The problem is that you cannot make a statement about the overall 
"correctness" of a transaction until both sides have been reconciled, 
and that usually happens at different dates.

It would be quite valid to "lock" the split in the bank account after 
the bank account was reconciled, but keep the option to move the 
opposite split elsewhere if it was determined that the amount had been 
allocated to the wrong place. Once it is allocated to the right place, 
the other side of the transaction is reconciled, and now both splits 
become locked.

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