Is there a consensus about how to bill third parties? If not, what are some alternative ways to do it with TM/BM version 10?
The fact situations differ, but examples are: billing opposing party for photocopying expenses in the course of discovery; billing opposing party for a share of filing fees relating to joint motions; billing nonparties for miscellaneous expenses; etc.
However it's done has to accommodate the possibility that a client would make a payment before the third party when the expense for which the third party was billed is older than some of the expenses for which the client was billed; an allocation issue could result.
Joseph Nierenberg Nierenberg Employment Law, PLLC
Consulting – Litigation – Training
You could setup a separate matter and do split billing between the two matters, or just bill the second matter for the appropriate expenses.
Caren Schwartz (Moderator/CIC)
& Time &
Cents Consultants, LLC
www.3545consulting.com / www.timeandcents.com
Software for Managing Time, Money
Time Matters, Billing Matters,
Billing Matters Plus, PC Law CIC
I remembered after my post that in past situations we had created a submatter for this situation. But what do you mean by "split billing," as opposed to your second suggestion, of billing the specific expenses through the separate matter?
Earlier today I submitted a reply to Caren's post, but now have a related--and more generally applicable--follow-up (for anyone) re. split bililng:
The Advanced tab of billing preferences allows one matter's billing to be split with one or more other matters. However, I could not find anything in the PDF manuals or billing preferences options that would allow one matter's billing to be split among multiple contacts. It seems to me that the latter situation is much more often needed than the former. Is there a way to do that with TM/BM10?
An example is a set of activities for the benefit of two affiliated but separate organizations. There should be one matter, but billed to two contacts. How can this be done?
Split billing allows splitting between two matters, unless you are billing by contact in which case you could split bill between contacts.
Split billing is ideal for situations like custody matters where each parent pays part of the bill, or insurance cases where multiple firms each pay part of the bill. When you set up the split you say what percent of the time charges and/or the expenses are assigned to each matter. Then you enter the time or expense on the primary matter. When you generate bills, each matter will get it's appropriate percentage.
When taking a payment you can choose which invoices to pay. In the circumstance that you describe (where the client pays before the 3rd party), I would just not pay the invoice to the third party...just uncheck it. It requires that the person entering the paymend pay attention...but I think that every frim would want thay anyway..someone taking the payment to be watching what is being paid so they can catch errors.
Matt Stone, LLB Premier CIC - Forum Administrator 7SecondSystem.comThe 7 Second Blog
LexisNexis Platinum Achievement Circle 2009 Top Sales Producer – Time Matters