Open Accounts Law and Legal Definition

An "open account" may also be referred to as "open current account," "running account" and "mutual, open and current account." However, properly speaking, the term "open account" means only an account on which the balance has not been determined. It is an account based on continuous dealing between the parties, which has not been closed, settled or stated, and which is kept open with the expectation of further transactions.

An open account is created when the parties intend that the individual items of the account will not be considered independently, but as a connected series of transactions. In addition, the parties must intend that the account will be kept open and subject to a shifting balance as additional related entries of debits and credits are made, until either party decides to settle and close the account. In an open account, there is but one single and indivisible liability arising from the series of related and reciprocal debits and credits. This single liability is to be fixed at the time of settlement, or following the last pertinent entry of the account. Finally, the balance must be mutually agreed on by the parties or impliedly imposed on them by law.