List Element is Already in Use


Description of Error:

While saving a customer, vendor or employee record in ESC, an error appears:

List element is already in use.

The error is usually accompanied by the name of the record ESC is unable to post to QuickBooks. This error may also occur while posting invoices or A/P bills to QuickBooks.

Cause of Error:

When customers, vendors or employees are linked between ESC and QuickBooks, QuickBooks assigns to them a set of identification codes called the "ListID" and the "AcctKey". When ESC saves a customer and attempts to send the information to QuickBooks, it searches for that customer by the ListID. If it cannot find the ListID, it will attempt to add that customer, vendor or employee as a new record to QuickBooks. Occasionally, problems with the QuickBooks company file will alter the ListID's that are assigned to those records. This prevents ESC from being able to recognize those records by the ListID and ESC will then attempt to add them as a new record. At this point, QuickBooks will recognize that the AcctKey of the 'new' record being posted is the same as a record that already exists and will prevent the record from being created.


Complete the following steps to fix a single record:

  1. Open the customer in Quickbooks and copy the contents of the Customer Name field.
  2. Add – OLD to the end of the Customer Name field at the top of the screen (Customer ID field) and click OK. So if the customer was Abner, Jack it would become Abner, Jack – OLD.
  3. Switch back to ESC and recall the same customer on the Customer Entry screen. Click Save and the customer will be sent to QuickBooks again. There will now be two records in QuickBooks for the same customer but with slightly different names. These now need to be merged in QuickBooks.
  4. To perform the merge, makes sure you are logged into QuickBooks with Administrator privileges and are in Single User Mode. Open the customer with the – OLD at the end of their name and remove it. Click OK and you will be prompted to merge it with the customer that was just sent over by ESC. Allow that and you’re all set.

It is important to note that while this error may appear to only affect a single record, it may indicate a problem with the QuickBooks company file. This problem could be caused by maintenance to the company file, updates, compressing the company file, archiving records or by recent power or hardware failures that damage the company file. If you find this to be the case, please try this procedure to fix complications with the database:

  1. Have all users log out of QuickBooks.
  2. Disconnect the ESC Accounting Server (if using the Direct Connect method for ESC, have all users close ESC).
  3. Log into QuickBooks as the Admin.
  4. Switch QuickBooks to Single-User Mode.
  5. Go to File→Utilities→Rebuild Data.
  6. Run the Rebuild Utility three times consecutively.
  7. Switch back to Multi-User Mode.
  8. Reconnect the ESC Accounting Server.
  9. Log into Electronic Service Control
  10. Go to File→QuickBooks Connection Wizard
  11. Run the wizard all the way to the end. Match up any records for Customers, Vendors and Employees that are not currently linked between ESC and QuickBooks.

All users may now log back into QuickBooks and Electronic Service Control and resume their work as normal.

Additional Information:

Note: This error message is similar to "List element in use". However, the issue indicated by this error is very different. Please double-check the error message you have received for the exact syntax.

If you receive the "List element in use" error, click here.

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