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Schedule Validation Rules Maintenance

This article applies to:Avalara Excise

 

This document applies to Enterprise license type.  Content last updated 03/16/2016.
Help Center documentation is confidential and proprietary to Avalara clients.
 

 

Schedule validation rules verify that data entered on schedules meets state-defined reporting requirements.  Manual and imported transactions use the same set of schedule validation rules.  A validation rule can be tied to a specific schedule or return at the jurisdiction level or system-wide.  

Assumption: You are familiar with the validation process and error corrections.  Click here to read the document on basic validation and corrections.

Determine the Validation Rule Id

The most reliable way to identify a validation rule is by its unique Rule Id.  Many error messages are the same across multiple jurisdictions, and the messages can be very similar to one another, so using key words to find a rule can be inefficient.

The exact validation rule verbiage is displayed in your return validation error message.  Here are a few examples of common validation rules that can help prevent filing mistakes:

  • Carrier FEIN or SSN is required, must be 9 digits in length.
  • The seller effective date range is not valid for the filing session start and end dates.
  • Destination city / state is required.
  • Mode code must be valid for this jurisdiction.
  • Ending Inventory is required; value must be numeric and have zero decimal places.

A rule can also be very specific to its jurisdiction to help you file correctly, like these examples:

  • Purchaser License Number is required and must be 5 digits.
  • Locator Number is required for Correction Type of 'REVERSE_ENTRY' and 'REPLACEMENT'.
  • Vehicle use type is required.
  • Seller Name is optional and should equal Position Holder Name.
  1. Click on Tax Sessions > Validation and select the session from the dropdown from the top of the page.
    • You can also click on a session under Tax Filing > Tax Sessions and select Transaction Validation.
  2. Note the Rule Id for the validation rule you want to change in the grid.
    • Clicking on the row will take you to the transaction's manual entry screen, not the validation rule.

View Validation Rules 

A validation rule can be overridden to allow transactions that would fail with the default company settings to pass to the tax return.  Once a setting is edited and saved, it will apply every time the validation is run until it is deleted.

You can also use Profiles to fill in fields that you know will be missing to reduce validation errors.

  1. Click Maintenance > Schedule Validation Rules.
  2. Filter on the number of the Rule Id, using the Equal To operator.
  3. Confirm it is the correct Error Message for the jurisdiction and taxpayer type you want to override.
    • The error message displayed in the grid is the one from your validation.
  4. Click the row in the results grid.

Change the Error Level or Status

The Original record is displayed, which can be viewed but not be edited.  An override must be applied to change its error level and status values.

  1. Click the Override tab.  
  2. Set the available options:
    • Error Level 
      • Critical - prevents return generation until it is fixed.
      • Warning - allows return generation, adding a warning to the validation.
      • Informational - allows return generation, flagging it as information only.

Be aware that changing error levels that have a default system value of critical will make your return generate, but may cause it to be in conflict with your jurisdiction's tax laws.  Check the Session Details history log for errors regarding override of critical error levels.

  • Status
    • Active - validation uses the rule and returns an error level message.
    • Inactive - validation ignores the rule completely.
  1. Click Insert.
  2. This adds a row with the same Rule Id to your master company, which in this example is 99.
  3. You can update the error level and status at any time on your company record, or delete it to set the default rule back to the Company 0 record.

If you set a record Inactive, it will no long show on your validation screen.  During troubleshooting, check for inactive schedule validation rules that might be causing your tax return to be incorrect.

Mass change

To update multiple records at once, use the Mass Change.

  1. Click Maintenance > Schedule Validation Rules
  2. Use the filters to display only the rules you want to change.
  3. Click the dropdown in the lower left corner of the Schedule Validation Rules screen.
  4. Select Mass Change Rule(s) and click Submit.
  5. Confirm that the number of records you are updating is correct.
  6. Select an Action to apply:
    • Insert or Update Existing
    • Delete
  7. Check mark which setting(s) to change and select the new values.
  8. Click Submit.

Example

Here is an example of when you might want to override a transaction rule and change its status from Critical to Warning:

Your filing jurisdiction asks you to file all your bulk movements using the generic carrier_fein of 999999999.  The validation rules do not allow an FEIN of all 9s, but you can't run a return until you pass validation with no errors.  

  • Note the Rule Id, and search for it in the Schedule Validation Rules grid.
  • Click on it, and change the Error Level to Warning.
  • Now your carrier records with FEIN will pass validation, but warn you that they are present.

Obsolete Date

When a new validation rule is added in a software release, it marks the existing record as obsolete with the date of the change.

  • Since a rule override has the same Rule Id as the original, it is also marked as obsolete and the new Company 0 record becomes the default.
  • If you want the new rule added in the release to be overridden, you must edit it manually.
  • You cannot obsolete any records in this table manually, they are always done by system update.

 

 

excisehelpcenter@avalara.com

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