I'm developing an invoicing system, but I'm struggling to find the right terms to use. (The application itself is in another language, but the database terms are all in English.)

Customers get an invoice every January, with estimated costs for the services they will use.

Then, in December, they get an invoice with a correction (may be debit or credit).

I will define the first invoice as 'advance', but what would I call the second invoice? Settlement? I need to make this distinction, because the system has to take the advance payment in consideration when issuing a new (...) invoice.

  • An invoice cannot be called an advance in English accounting terminology.
    – Lambie
    Oct 28, 2016 at 14:30
  • A partial payment in advance could be a deposit [on account]. You can issue a corrected or adjusted invoice after the preliminary invoice. By the way, the amount to be paid can be called the outstanding balance. Oct 29, 2016 at 4:09
  • The first one is either a pro forma invoice or an estimate and the second one is the actual invoice. Oct 30, 2016 at 5:54

1 Answer 1


You can refer to it as the final invoice (accounting): ​

  • the last invoice, usually sent after a project or order is completed, which includes the total amount of money that is still owed: Once the repairs are completed the shop must give a you a final invoice.

Cambridge Dictionary

  • Hmm, almost covers it, but as it's just a term used in a database - I'll go for that. Thanks.
    – Sherlock
    Oct 28, 2016 at 8:42
  • Go with Autoresponder's pro forma invoice or estimate, and the second might be an actual invoice or a statement. I think a final invoice is more often used when someone’s been working on a project for a while, submitting a single request for payment at the end of each period and after the whole thing’s finished, submits a final invoice both covering the pst period and correcting any errors. It might well be that having submitted that final invoice, he can’t then sue the client for anything he forgot. Then as Sherlock said, it’s a database… call them One and Two if you like Nov 12, 2016 at 23:41

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