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Avalara Help Center

Lock the liability summary to approve returns to be filed

After you reconcile the numbers from your clients' business application against the liability summaries, let us know that the returns are ready to be filed by locking the liability summaries.



Liability summaries are automatically locked on the 10th of the month, at 5 p.m. PT / 2 p.m. ET. Create a case with Avalara when a liability summary needs to be unlocked.

Before you begin

  • Make sure you've set up your returns and that they're active (which means Avalara has approved them). 
  • Review the monthly returns cycle. You approve returns for the previous month between the 5th and the 10th of the current month.
  • Set up or update the company information.
  • Make sure transactions are uploaded for the company you want to work with. If not, see Create an account link request or Import external data source transaction.


  1. In Managed Returns for Accountants, go to Returns > Liability Summary.
  2. Use filters to identify the summaries you want to lock.
    For those summaries with the status of Pending Approval, the returns are ready for review and can be locked. 
  3. Select Go to view the liability.
  4. Lock liability summaries individually or in bulk:
    • Lock all liability summaries for a state: Find the state liability summary you want to lock, then select ⋮  > Lock.
      This locks all filing tasks for that state, including local jurisdictions.
    • Lock at the individual jurisdiction level: Select a state from the top table to see the individual jurisdiction summaries in the lower table. In the lower table, select ⋮ > Lock.
    • Lock all liability summaries for multiple states: Select the checkbox to the left of any liability summaries you want to lock, then select the Lock Regions icon.

After the liability summaries are locked, Avalara begins preparing and filing the returns. The Filing Tasks detail window displays who locked the liability summary.

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