Andrew Farthing wrote: "Loss of income" is a strange term to use under the circumstances.
I don't think so, but it does depend on how the accounting conventions work. So for a Â£ 27 membership payment received on 1st December 2011, it would be my understanding that you book the whole Â£ 27 ( after deducting a VAT accrual) into the 2010 - 11 year. It's by far the simplest approach and seems consistent with the way the budget and accounts are presented. For three year memberships you divide the income by 3 and put it through in three chunks. That way at the year end, you only have outstanding accruals for the multi year memberships.
If you convert such a system to an anniversary approach, you are only getting a proportion of the income at 1st December 2012, so your reported income at 30th April 2013 is reduced. In compensation you get the anniversary payment earlier, on 1st September 2013.
It's possible to imagine that the ECF uses a monthly accrual, but does it?
Members subscriptions are credited when received and a provision has been made in the accounts for subscriptions paid in advance for future years and for the cost of services to be supplied after the Balance sheet date until the subscriptions expire.
So what does that mean in practice? There's an amount set aside, but is it income related or expense related? So you credit the full Â£ 27 but accrue part of it as an expense? So in the year where you switch systems, assuming 1st January renewal, then you get Â£ 18 only, but a release of Â£ 18 from the previous year less Â£ 9 as the expense accrual. So your net income remains Â£ 27 but you are only reporting Â£ 18 as subs.
The budget did something really odd. It brought in all the income supposedly accrued from previous years, but didn't, on the face of it, allow for only receiving a proportion of the income for renewing members.