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Refund of Appropriation / AP Adjustment Vouchers


New York State often receives checks from vendors, recipients, and employees that represent a return of a full or partial payment previously made to them. These returns of payments are called “Refunds of Appropriation” and result in a credit to the appropriation from which the payment was originally made. Common reasons for these refunds include:


An Accounts Payable Adjustment Voucher is used by agencies to submit a refund of appropriation. An Adjustment Voucher is not required when an agency is returning an SFS issued check to be cancelled by the Department of Taxation and Finance - Treasury (DTF – Treasury). For these situations, see Chapter XII, Section 9.C - Reissuing or Cancelling a Vendor Check of this Guide.


In order for a refund to be properly credited to the original charged appropriation, the appropriation must be active within SFS. Expenditure refunds against lapsed appropriations should still be submitted on an Adjustment Voucher but with an Account code of 32207 Refund – Lapsed Approps on the credit line. Refunds that relate to closed federal grant awards are to be refunded to the Federal Government following the procedures outlined in Chapter IX, Section 8 – Federal Grant Refunds of this Guide. For refunds that relate to lapsed cash advance accounts, see Chapter VII, Section 10.C – Reducing a Cash Advance.


State agencies are responsible for initiating the Adjustment Voucher and identifying the necessary supporting documents. The primary source of information used in preparing the Adjustment Voucher is the original voucher containing the expenditure chartfields that were initially charged. All Adjustment Vouchers are subject to review and approval by agency personnel as well as OSC’s Bureau of State Accounting Operations (BSAO) – Budgets and Spending Accounting (Budgets). Since an Adjustment Voucher restores the appropriation authorization to spend, it is imperative that these transactions be fully documented and justified.


Agencies are no longer required to submit an AC1286-S form (Refund of Appropriation) as it is not considered an official source document. Agencies may choose to use the AC1286-S form as part of their internal process and/or as an aid in entering the transaction into SFS or as supplemental backup attached to the transaction in SFS. It may also be attached if it is being used as a description of the source of funds.


Adjustment Voucher Preparation


On-line agencies enter an Adjustment Voucher in the Accounts Payable module within SFS.


SFS Navigation: Accounts Payable >Vouchers > Add/Update > Regular Entry


The Voucher Style is “Adjustments”.



Once the Adjustment Voucher has been saved and has a valid budget status agencies should send their checks to DTF – Treasury to be deposited to the General Checking Account (GCA). The Adjustment Voucher will be workflowed through all agency approvals and will then be workflowed to BSAO – Budgets for review after a valid budget status is received. Once notified by DTF – Treasury that the funds have been received and deposited to the bank, BSAO – Budgets will review and then approve the AP Adjustment Voucher.


Documentation Requirements


If the refund relates to a payment that was posted in SFS, a “Related Voucher” must be linked to the transaction. For on-line agencies, no additional documentation is required. Bulkload and direct entry agencies must email backup documentation referencing the original voucher to The email subject line should include “AP Adjustment Voucher”, BU, and the document ID of the Adjustment Voucher, if known. The file name of the backup documentation should correspond to the document ID to be posted, if known. Documentation should include the necessary information to justify the transaction (i.e. original voucher, explanation of refund, etc.). BSAO - Budgets will upload the file and attach it to the transaction in SFS.


There are circumstances when the original vendor ID cannot, or should not, be entered on the voucher, and so a “Related Voucher” cannot be indicated:



When a refund is being entered for any of the above situations, Vendor ID 0RAR000000 must be used. When this vendor ID is used, the system will not allow a related voucher to be linked. For on-line agencies, backup documentation must be uploaded as an attachment via the Invoice Information page. Any explanations needed to further describe the transaction can be added in the Comments link on the Invoice Information page. Bulkload and direct entry agencies should email backup documentation to


For any refund, no confidential data should be included in the backup documentation.


Bulkload and direct entry agencies must include contact information with the transaction. Agencies can either enter the contact information in the Comments link on the Invoice Information page or include the information on the first page of the backup documentation. The agency contact is not necessarily the preparer or the person entering the document. It should be the individual who can answer specific questions about the transaction.


Treasury Requirements


Agencies will forward the checks, money orders, etc. and any corresponding documents to DTF – Treasury who will deposit the funds into the appropriate State bank account. (The majority of deposits are made to the State’s GCA.)


Via Interoffice Mail Via U.S. Postal Service

New York State Taxation & Finance

Division of Treasury

110 State Street, 2nd Floor

Albany, NY 12207


Attn: Check Cashing Department

New York State Taxation & Finance

Division of Treasury

PO Box 22119

Albany, NY 12201-2119


Attn: Check Cashing Department


A paper document identifying the transaction must be sent to DTF – Treasury. The information on the document allows DTF – Treasury to match the checks or money orders to the transaction in SFS. The document must contain the following information:



For online agencies a screen print of the SFS “Summary” page or “Invoice Information” page from the Voucher Entry screens is recommended as a substitute for the above document. The screen print must have the following handwritten on the copy:


Agencies must write the following information on each check:



The total of the checks submitted for deposit must match the document total and the amount entered into SFS. When submitting multiple checks with one document, a listing of the checks is beneficial to assist Treasury in matching the checks to the deposit.


For electronic (ACH or wire) funds, agencies must submit an email to with the following information listed:



BSAO Budgets and Spending Accounting Section (Budgets) Review


After Treasury notifies BSAO Budgets that the money has been received, the corresponding SFS transaction will be reviewed for accuracy and completeness. BSAO - Budgets can approve, deny, or reject the document. Documents are “denied” for online agencies, and “rejected” for Bulkload agencies. Bulkload Adjustment Vouchers cannot be returned for corrections via workflow and are therefore “rejected” and then deleted. It is the agency’s responsibility to prepare and submit any replacement transactions and required documentation as soon as they are notified by BSAO – Budgets that a correction needs to be made. After the AP Adjustment Voucher has been posted, agencies will be able to view the transactions on the daily revenue reports, such as the NYGL0400 ALL JOURNAL Report.


Document Errors


In the event that BSAO – Budgets is unable to approve the transaction due to errors, BSAO – Budgets will contact the agency to resolve the problem. If the document is denied for an online agency, it will be routed back into the agencies workflow where they must make the necessary corrections (on the same transaction) and resubmit it for approval by the next business day. If the document is rejected for a bulkload or direct entry agency, the agency will need to rekey the document and notify the BSAO Accountant who initially contacted them with the new voucher ID. The NYGL0400 ALL JOURNAL Report is run monthly as a Book of Record report, but can also be generated on-demand by agencies. This report provides confirmation that the AP Adjustment Voucher was posted to the Modified Accrual ledger and should be reviewed by agencies to ensure the accuracy of the expenditure reduction.


Refunds Owed to the State


Chapter XII, Section 9.D - Refunds Owed to the State of this Guide provides additional information on other Post-Payment Activities such as:



Post Processing Audit


Agencies are required to retain copies of AP Adjustment Vouchers’ supporting documentation for audit purposes, including but not limited to, post processing audit by BSAO – Budgets, OSC auditors, federal grant program auditors, and Federal Single Audit auditors.


Adjustment Voucher Deletion


To keep the KK, Cash and Modified Accrual ledgers in synch as well as reducing the amount of transactions remaining in SFS that cannot be posted, Adjustment Vouchers will be deleted throughout the Fiscal Year by SFS, BSAO - Budgets and the Bureau of State Expenditures (OSC – BSE) according to the following rules:



Document Retention


For documentation retention requirements see Section 5 – Document Retention of this Chapter.

Guide to Financial Operations
REV. 06/28/2017