My big problem comes when attempting to add a payment record. One of the
required fields (validates_presence_of) is TransDate (transaction date).
Even if the user fills that in, they get an error message: TransDate is
missing, and indeed it now appears blank on the screen.
What control are you using for the date entry? Unless you are using
the rails-supplied date_select, there will be some problems,
especially with non-US date formats. What date format are you
expecting? Anyway, if you are using text_field for date entry, if the
date cannot be parsed properly, Date.parse or DateTime.parse (can't
remember which one is used by rails) will silently return nil, which
may explain the error you are seeing.