Brief Accounting allows for an invoice to be created that is split between as many parties as required, in whatever proportions are required. The amount to be paid by each party and the total amount due will be detailed in the invoice. An invoice may be split amongst different matters belonging to the same client, or between matters that belong to different clients.
A summary of the process and outcome is below:
- Create a master matter and servant matters.
- Time & Disbursement slips are entered under the master file number.
- When posting a standard invoice for the master matter, an allocation table will be displayed.
- Distribute the fees & disbursements as required between the servant matters only.
- An individual invoice will automatically be created for each servant matter, using your next invoice number, plus a corresponding letter suffix. E.g. If your master matter is 2010001*, and your next invoice number is 1001, then your servant matter 2010001a will have invoice number 1001a; servant matter 2010001b will will have invoice number 1001b, etc.
- When payment is received, receipts will be posted for the individual invoices in their respective matters.
1. A Master Matter needs to be created for billing ALL TIME & DISBURSEMENTS - the file number of the master matter must end with an asterisk "*" (E.g. 2010001*).
NOTE: if necessary, an asterisk can be added to the end of an already existing file number via the Matter card.
2. The Servant Matters are then created. These must have the same file number as the master matter, except for a letter in place of the asterisk for each contact you will be billing (E.g. 2010001a, 2010001b, 2010001c, etc.).
If multiple matters need to be created under the same client, ensure that individual addresses are entered on the Matter card by ticking the Matter Based Addresses box on the Client card > Billing side tab (not the top tab). You may want to precede each contact with "c/o", as they will be appearing below the client name in the "to" field of the invoice being issued.
NOTE: Only the Servant matters are used at the final billing stage so if there are three parties to bill, create three servant matters.
Once the Master matter and Servant matters have been set up and all slips are entered, a Pre-bill can be printed or the Invoice posted as usual. It is recommended that a Pre-bill be printed prior to posting invoices.
3. To view the split-billing option without posting the invoice, navigate to the Billing module > Summary tab > Open the Master matter and click Print icon.
Check the "Statement of Fees & Disbursements" check box and clear the "PreBill Report" check box:
4. As soon as the Print button is clicked, a Split Billing summary screen should appear similar to below (if it doesn't, the Servant matters have not been created):
5. Select the desired breakdown of Fees (time) and Disbursements (costs) for each servant matter and click Allocate.
NOTE: IF the Allocate button is greyed out, it means that the distribution does not match the total invoice amount.
6. Once allocated, select the usual billing options and click Print again - this will generate an individual invoice for each servant matter that is to be invoiced.