Current Maturities of Long-Term Debt

Definition

The term current maturities of long-term debt refers to the portion of a company's liabilities that are coming due in the next 12 months.  Examples of this long-term debt include bonds as well as mortgage obligations that are maturing.  This portion of long-term debt is classified as a current liability on a company's balance sheet.

Explanation

Current liabilities are defined as debts that must be paid within one year or one operating cycle, whichever is longer.  The current maturities of long-term debt is also part of the company's definitely determinable liabilities, since it's both known to exist and can be measured precisely.

As these debt obligations come due in the next 12 months, they are moved from the long-term liabilities section of the balance sheet to current liabilities.  There are three exceptions to this guideline.  If one of the following conditions exists, the debt should not be moved to the current liabilities section of the balance sheet:

  • If the company has established an asset (fund) to retire this debt, and that fund is not classified as a current asset.
  • If the long-term debt coming due is going to be refinanced or retired using new debt.
  • If the maturing portion of the long-term debt is going to be converted into shares of common or preferred stock.

Furthermore, companies are required to add a parenthetical explanation or footnote to the company's financial statements when they plan to liquidate debt in this manner.

Related Terms

current liabilities, long-term debt, current assets, parenthetical explanation, financial statement, definitely determinable liabilities