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Client Funds Account

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ARiggans Posted: Tue, Oct 24 2006 9:07 PM


We have 3 bank accts. for our firm: 

  • Operating Account (Firm Acct.);
  • General Trust Account (contains multiple client's funds);
  • Client Specific Trust Acct. (contains 1 client's funds). 

We are attempting to set up BM to handle these accts.  I have searched the manual for BM and looked through the forums, but haven't found an answer that is responsive to our delima.

We have set up the firm acct. as a bank acct., but are unsure as to how to deal with our two trust accts.  Should these be set up as bank accts. or funds accts?  We were using QuickBooks and what we would do is receive a payment into the general trust acct. and allocate it to a particular matter (job) for the client.  Then, when fee disbursements on the cases were made, another check would be cut from the general trust acct. to the client's specific trust acct.  Is there a way to receive payments into our general trust acct. in BM and allocate those payments to a particular matter? 

It appears that what we need to do is receive a 'payment to fund' so the money shows up in the particular matter, then, when disbursements are made, complete a fund to fund transfer to put it in the client's specific fund account.  However, my brain is having a difficult time actually wrapping around the procedure to make sure it accomplishes our goal of receiving the money intitially for a particular matter, then disbursing the money to the client's specific trust account.

Please bear with me, we upgraded from TM4 and all of this is incredibly new - especially the BM part.  I think we are going to love having everything in one program (instead of 3), but the learning curve is steep right now.  Any help would be appreciated.


Alicia M. Riggans, Firm Administrator MOSELEY & MOSELEY Suite 300, 101 Church Street Nashville, Tennessee 37201 p: 6 1 5 . 2 5 4 . 0 1 4 0 f: 6 1 5 . 2 4 4 . 2 2 7 0
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In Billing Matters you need to go to file - setup - rates and accounts and setup your trust bank accounts. Then you assign the appropriate trust bank accounts to the client in the billing prefrences. You can do a fund to fund transfer within Billing Matters but I would like to go back to a more basic level.
I am not sure I understand why you are transferring the funds into the client specific funds account AFTER you make the disbursements. It seems to me that when you make a disbursement from funds you would be paying the funds to vendor.
What I think you may be describing is that in QuickBooks you are keeping sub bank accounts for each client as a way to track client funds balances. If this is correct then I think you are going to be making a lot of extra work and I would like to suggest that you consider one trust bank account and using the customer name field as a way to track client fund balances in QuickBooks.


Caren Schwartz (Moderator/CIC)

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& Time & Cents Consultants, LLC

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Software for Managing Time, Money & Information

Time Matters, Billing Matters, Billing Matters Plus, PC Law CIC


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Robin replied on Tue, Oct 24 2006 11:42 PM

I have not attended any training but have been using TM&BM 7.0 for just over a year now.  Most of what I do is self-taught, on-the-job training as I go so there may be a better way but ...

We have one Trust account and one Operating account.  When a Matter's billing preferences are setup, the Trust account is identified in the Funds tab.  All bill and A/R entries are handled in the Matter (not the Contact).  Trust funds for Mr. Client for his Mr.Client v. Mr.OpParty Matter then automatically apply/transfer from Trust to Operating when the Matter is invoiced (as long as automatically apply ... is checked on the Funds tab of billing preferences).

However, if Mr. Client has multiple Matters sharing the same Retainer, it gets a bit trickier (at least, I have not found an automated manner of handling it).  What I do is enter a withdraw A/R entry in the Matter that the Retainer is associated with then a payment A/R entry in the other Matter.


Robin Burlinski, Bookkeeper
Cooper & Forbes, Painesville, Ohio

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