Guest post: IRS can improve corporate productivity

November 2nd, 2009 by MichaelCousins

Here’s an idea:  revise IRS rules for employee reimbursement of expenses (eg, travel expenses) that require receipts from credit card purchases.  Paper receipts!!??!  Currently, employees need to save receipts, then they or their admin support tapes the receipts to 8.5 x 11 sheets of paper (the 2nd biggest use of Scotch tape outside of Xmas).  The sheets are then mailed or faxed to a corporate office where there someone manually reconciles the receipt against credit card statements.

It is incumbent upon the corporation to ensure reimbursements are only for expenses that were for legitimate business expenses.  For this purpose, a paper receipt has no more or less value than a line item on a credit card statement that indicates purchase.  


I believe that the IRS rule on receipts dates to before when there were electronic records of everything.   Since there is already an electronic receipt from the credit card, I don’t know what value that reconciliation has except for providing satisfaction to whomever gets to make the matches.  It would seem that in case of audit, the records could be produced via the credit card company or the employee’s credit card account.  

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