Starting Balances are the negative balances yet to recoup, or any positive balances yet to be paid, as of the Starting Date.
These should be provided for all of the payees/artists/releases/etc in your catalog via a copy of the Starting Balances - Template doc.
How to Enter Starting Balances
The Best Way - Starting Balances as Transfers
Say e.g. prior to signing up with IC on Jan 1st 2020, a catalog contained a release with the following income/expense/advance breakdown:
= $100 net
* 50% payee split
= $50 payee share
-$1000 payee advance
= -$950 payee balance
... we would simply enter in the -$950 payee balance as a transfer dated Dec 31st 2019. In the memo we'd link to any previous accounting docs that show where those numbers came from.
We could enter in separate transactions for the income, expenses, and advance; along with the contract containing the payee split %, that would yield the same -$950 Starting Balance that we want to pick up from.
This method has a few drawbacks, however:
- 3x the work, more if there are multiple payees with advances
- Increasing your bill: how we bill is based on the income input into the system, so this method would unnecessarily increase your bill.
What if I don't have or trust my Starting Balances?
Let your catalog manager know, and together you'll determine the best Starting Date + Balances.