QB Issue Resolution:

if the retainer is being withheld from you, that means it is an asset, it is due to you

a liability would be if you had been paid the retainer and owed it for future perfomance

create a current asset account and book that amount there

Resolution for Issue 'Separating Retainers from actual debt' available: Yes (Solved).
Source: Intuit Community forum.

Separating Retainers from actual debt: this issue or error code is a known issue in Quickbooks Online (QBO) and/or Quickbooks. Support for this issue is available either by self-service or paid support options. Experts are available to resolve your Quickbooks issue to ensure minimal downtime and continue running your business. First try to resolve the issue yourself by looking for a resolution described below. If it is a complex issue or you are unable to solve the issue, you may contact us by clicking here or by using other support options.

Support for retainer
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Error Recovery for retainer [Canada]
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