Journal Voucher (JV) Guidance

This document supplements existing guidance within Duke's General Accounting Procedures with respect to Journal Vouchers. This guidance applies to all Journal Vouchers regardless of dollar amount, general ledger account, or originating management center.


Roles and Responsibilities:


  • JV originators must include within SAP (with each JV) a thorough explanation of each JV, including its purpose, reference to any relevant manual approvals, and the basis for the related amounts (e.g. calculations).
  • JV originators should maintain manual documentation that supports each JV within the department, as appropriate (see below for further detail).


  • JV approvers should review each entry and take action on the entry (approve or reject) within 24 hours from the time of arrival in your SAP Inbox.
  • JV approvers should (a) ensure that the document description and attachments include the relevant information to make the approver comfortable that the JV is appropriate and supported; (b) reject entries with insufficient documentation, and (c) include an explanation/reason for the rejection within the Journal Voucher.


Documentation Requirements:

Journal Voucher (JV) Descriptions:
(included within SAP)

  • The JV originator must provide a detailed explanation of the purpose and justification for the entry, as well as the type and location of any manual supporting documentation. This full explanation will often need to be entered in the extra text field in SAP due to length restrictions for line item text (50 characters); however, line item text must also be included for each line in the JV.

    • Example 1, extra text field (appropriate): Monthly entry to reallocate expense, per July 1, 2005 agreement approved by Alex Barth (DU School of Medicine) and Phil Smith (DUH). Agreement is maintained within the Department of Psycho-Analytical Statistics Studies. Supporting calculation attached (spreadsheet).
    • Example 2, extra text field (inadequate): Entry to reallocate expense at month-end.
    • Example 3, extra text field (adequate): To reverse document 3245687932 (posting date: January 3, 2006), due to an incorrect cost center used in that document.
    • Example 4, extra text field (inadequate): Document 3245686932.
  • Entries involving a large volume of Interdepartmental Requisitions (IRs) are considered adequately documented when each line item in the journal voucher includes an IR number, and the extra text field for the journal voucher includes a description of the nature of the charge and the location of the related documentation/support.

    • Example 5 (appropriate): Line item text: IR #342595; Extra text: Tissue samples for research; supporting documentation maintained by Melanie Brown, Pathology.

    • Example 6 (inadequate): Line item text: IR #34259585; Extra text: (none)
  • When confidentiality concerns make detailed explanations in SAP impractical, that fact should be documented within the JV and a location where the related documentation will be maintained should be cited.

    • Example 7, extra text field (appropriate): Transfer of costs associated with legal settlement paid on November 12, 2006. Confidential documentation is on file within DUHS Corporate Finance.
    • Example 8 (inadequate): Confidential.
  • If a Journal Voucher involves a restricted WBS element (all 3xx except 39x codes in company 0010), the transfer may be considered a "cost transfer." Cost transfers must be processed in accordance with GAP 200.150, Cost Transfers on Sponsored Projects.


Maintenance of Journal Voucher (JV) Documentation:
(outside of SAP)

If adequate documentation to support a JV cannot be entered into SAP, the originator must generate and maintain adequate documentation to support the entry within their department. This includes any manual approvals, reports, or other support used to calculate the amounts on the JV. This documentation should be maintained consistent with the applicable Duke University or DUHS retention policies. Please refer to GAP 200.240, Retention Periods for Accounting Records, and GAP 200.020, Journal Vouchers, for further detail.


All questions regarding this guidance should be directed to Accounting Systems Administration at (919) 684-2752.