Total Legal Accounting 3




USAGE: To pay monies for Clients for Trust related transactions. Only Trust Bank accounts may be access from this program. Cheques may be dissected amongst several files, if required. This program is used for amounts that are to be withdrawn from a Trust account, eg Settlements, Court Costs. THIRD PARTY CHEQUES are handled by a different program (see SECTION


DISCUSSION: Normally, only cheque amounts are entered her. It is unlikely that cash or credit card payments will be made from a trust account. Because of this, the name of the function is “Trust Cheques” rather than “Trust Payments”. As a result of this, the discussion that follows will assume cheques only.


When you start the TRUST CHEQUES program, T.L.A. initially asks:


ENTER CHEQUE TOTAL [__________$0.00 ]


Here you enter the total value of the Cheque to be drawn. No GST is involved in the transaction at this point. The value entered must not be zero, however, it may be negative if you are reversing a previous entry.


Next you are asked which Trust Bank Account the monies will be deposited into:




Enter the last four digits of the bank account and press <Enter> or <F10>. If you have only one account, set this GENERAL LEDGER CONTROL ACCOUNTS (see SECTION 6.5.2) to save time. If you have multiple Trust accounts, you may press <F9> to initiate a search.


Typically, the screen will now look like this:



The top of the screen displays the Trust Bank account you are posting to, the total value of the payment and the value dissected so far. At this point the total dissected is zero. T.L.A. will not allow you to update the Cheque until the Dissected value is exactly equal to the Total value.


Enter a Trust File (Client code) and press <Enter>. Alternatively, press <F9> to initiate a search. The Trust file you enter must refer to an active (not completed) file. You cannot send this file into a negative Trust balance unless the code is LAWINS (which is a special file set aside for Law Institute Deposits).


The screen will now typically look like this:



T.L.A. will display the Name of the File, the Address and Matter Re. Also the current Disbursement, Client and Trust balances are displayed on the left of the screen. These balances are updated when monies are applied to show you what the account will be when the current transaction is updated. This can be a useful check. You should look at these balances before updating the line.


There are several fields to enter:


Name                  Comments


DETAILS    Here you enter the details of the transaction, eg. SETTLEMENT. If you are entering multiple lines, you can repeat the previous line by pressing <F1>. This repeat function will remain live until you exit to the menu program.


VALUE                This is the value of the line. It might be the full value of the Cheque or the portion to be dissected to the current file. You may not enter a value that would cause the Cheque to be over dissected. You may press <F9> to open the on-screen calculator. The result of the calculation will be automatically inserted into this field. T.L.A. will alert you if there are insufficient cleared funds in the file’s account. This calculation is based on the date of the Cheque, the dates of previous receipts and the clearance days set for each receipt.


S&I                     This field is only used if the monies are being transferred to a Securities file. Here you enter the code of the Securities file you are linking to. T.L.A. will automatically add the value to this file when you update the Cheque. This saves you from having to enter the transaction twice. Also it means that both the Trust and Securities transactions will have the same Transaction Audit number. If you do not remember the code of the Securities file, press <F9> to initiate a search. If there is no Securities file involved, leave the field blank.


At each point, you may cancel the CHEQUE by pressing <ESC>. However, it is possible to return to a specific field by using <CsrUp> or <F8>.


If you have entered at least one line, you may press <F5> (at the FILE field) to enter the REVIEW function. This function allows you to view your entries, and if necessary change or delete a line. To move between lines use <CsrUp>, <CsrDn>, <PageUp>, <PageDn>, <Home> and <End>. If there is a particularly large number of lines, you can also use <F9> to go to a specific line number. To modify a line, make sure it is displayed in full in the bottom window and press <F3>. You can then re-enter any of the details. To leave the REVIEW function, press <ESC> or <F10>, once.


To end your lines, press <F10>. You will be asked to confirm that you have finished entering lines and then you will be asked certain trailer information. In some states, certain fields may be turned off or be inaccessible. A Complete list follows:


DATE                  This field defaults to today’s date (as per the date at the top right-hand-corner of your screen. You may change it to any valid date within the calendar (as defined in SECTION 7.1.6.) You may also return the date to today’s date by pressing <F1>. Note that this date has an effect on clearance dates. You should enter the date you received the monies.


CHEQUE DETAILS This field will be printed on the remittance portion of the Cheque. The default is the description of the first line but you can change it to any 50 character string that generally defines the reason for the Cheque.


PAYEE NAME   This field may be left blank but it is generally filled in if the Cheque is being made out to someone other that the name on the file.


REFERENCE      This field will default to the last reference number you entered, plus one. Depending on your settings in SYSTEM DEFAULTS (see SECTION 7.1.2) you may be able to change it to a different, non-zero value. The largest value available is 999999.


The screen will typically look like this:



At every point you can press <CsrUp> or <F8> to return to the previous field.


At the end of the CHEQUE you will be asked to confirm the update. This is the point of no return. Once you answer Y, T.L.A. will update all the relevant files. Up to this point you can cancel or modify the details. After you have updated the CHEQUE, you can only remove it by entering a negative CHEQUE i.e. the same entry but with a negative value.


If you have enabled the printing of cheques, T.L.A. will offer to print a cheque now. This is your only opportunity to print the cheque. Afterwards, you will be returned to the Cheque Value entry screen where you may either enter another CHEQUE or press <ESC> to return to the TRUST DATA ENTRY MENU.


Files updated by the Trust Cheque program:


Client/Trust master-file:        The individual dissections are deducted from the Trust balance. Also the last Trust transaction date is updated.


Client/Trust transaction file:  Each Cheque generates a transaction. This can be viewed in CLIENT/TRUST ENQUIRIES and is used to create reports, such as CLIENT STATEMENTS.


Securities master-file:          If a Securities file was included in a dissection, the Securities file will be updated.


Securities transaction-file:   Each Securities update creates a transaction in this area. The transactions may be viewed in SECURITIES ENQUIRIES.


Reconciliation File:   Each Cheque is posted to the Reconciliation File to be later compared with the Bank statement.


General Ledger master-file: The Trust Bank account is updated with the value of the Cheque.


General Ledger transaction-file:      A transaction is posted for the total value of the Cheque.


Audit transaction-file:            Each dissection creates a line in the Audit file, which can then be printed in the AUDIT TRAIL.

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