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A deep dive into deleting expenses and what happens when you do!

Cortney OfstadCortney Ofstad Posts: 57Expensify Success Coach - Admin Expensify Team
edited August 2019 in Deep Dives

Choosing to treat deleted expenses as a non-destructive action has always been a tricky topic. For some, the ability to restore their receipts, at any time, gives peace of mind knowing their receipts are never permanently gone. For others, sorting through unneeded, duplicate, or accidental receipt uploads cause aggravation instead of organization and efficiency.

Our stance is straightforward — we want you to be able to review all of your expenses at any time. Expenses (and receipts) mean you spent money, and therefore this could mean money back in your pocket!

We want you to be reimbursed just as much as you do, so we designed Expensify to make that process easy. Our mobile app allows you to SmartScan receipts on the go, stop worrying about the receipt information, and Scheduled Submit gives you the peace of mind to know your expenses will always be submitted on time.

To err is human. Imagine it’s tax time, and you’ve spent 365 days gathering receipts, creating expenses, and prepping everything for your accountant. The day of your appointment, you begin to organize your expenses into reports (hint hint Scheduled Submit hint hint), and after selecting every expense for the year, you accidentally click the red trash icon.

You panic, panic again, and then panic some more.

Luckily, you don’t have to panic for long, because you know you can undelete these expenses like it never happened. Simply put: in case of mistakes, Expensify’s got your back with what is essentially an “undo” button.

On the flip side, we get why seeing “unnecessary” expenses and receipts can be annoying. Having to sort through duplicates, non-company-related purchases, etc. can feel like a waste of time, and time is money after all!

Let's bust some myths about deleting expenses!

Myth: Being able to delete expenses means you no longer have to deal with unnecessary expenses.

Truth: You can adjust the filters on the Expenses page to avoid the unnecessary expenses. Also, the filters are sticky, meaning it will remember your selections and keep those expenses out of sight.

Myth: Saving all your receipts uses unnecessary space in your Expensify account and mobile app.

Truth: You have unlimited space, as Expensify is stored on the cloud, not directly to your computer or mobile device. Feel free to use up as much space as you want!

Myth: My policy admin can see these expenses, so I want them completely deleted.

Truth: Policy admins or approvers do not have access to your expenses until you place them on a report on the group/company policy. There is no risk of them seeing your receipts if you don’t want them to, so your personal expenses remain personal.

Myth: Expensify doesn’t want to build a feature to let us delete expenses.

Truth: We want to make sure you always have a backup plan or “undo” button, just in case. Accidents happen, things change, and we want to make sure you have access to your expenses at any time.

As always, we’re open to suggestions — please share any ideas you have on how you would like deleted expenses to be handled in the Idea section of the Expensify Community.

So whether you’re one to delete, not one to delete, or one to accidentally delete, just know that our goal is to make sure you’re getting the most out of your reporting process. After all, money in your pocket might not buy you happiness, but it sure makes life easier.


  • C_Bradford_1C_Bradford_1 Posts: 17Approved! Accountant Expensify Newcomer


    Just to clarify, if I as an approver delete a receipt off of a claim because it is a duplicate, I believe this would go back into the claimants' Expensify inbox?

    As an approver, is there not a way we can permanently delete duplicate receipts on the spot? This will be in order to prevent accidentally being reimbursed twice for the same receipt, and so that the claimant does not have the task of having to delete the receipt from his / her Expensify logon?

    Many thanks.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Posts: 2,136Expensify Success Coach - Admin Expensify Team

    Hi @C_Bradford_1 , this is a great question! Right now there is no admin functionality that allows you to delete rejected expenses on an employee's behalf. Only the account holder, in this case employee, can delete their expenses and reports.

  • C_Bradford_1C_Bradford_1 Posts: 17Approved! Accountant Expensify Newcomer

    @Sheena Trepanier

    Thanks for your comments.

    I will add this as in idea on the Expensify Community.

    From my point of view, it would seem tedious for the employee to have to delete receipts if they are duplicates, or they were rejected as the expense was not allowable, and it would be ideal if the admin could delete the receipt completely their end.

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