What Is an Open Invoice?

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Bills are open invoices sent out to customers.
Bills are open invoices sent out to customers. (Image: c-George/iStock/Getty Images)

Extending credit to customers is a fact of life for many businesses. A vendor has to bill customers for goods and services they get on credit. The invoices a vendor sends out serve this purpose by providing the customer with a detailed statement of the transaction. An invoice is said to be open until payment is received and processed, at which time the invoice is closed.

Contents of an Open Invoice

Any invoice requesting payment is an open invoice because the amount due has not yet been paid. Invoices are usually sent on company letterhead and include both the business’s name and contact information and that of the customer. An invoice provides the customer an itemized list of charges, amounts carried over from previous invoices and any credits or payments already received. The total amount due, along with information about any early payment discounts and late payment fees, is also included. Finally, the invoice should clearly state where to send payments.

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