Total Legal Accounting 3




USAGE: To enter Client Disbursements, i.e. payments made on behalf of a Client, to be billed later.


DISCUSSION: As you proceed with a file, there will be charges that you pay on behalf of your Client (other than those made via Trust Cheques (see SECTION These might include courier fees, photocopying charges and other incidental costs (other than time). This program allows you to assign these costs to the Client’s file. You may then bill then along with any time or other fees when the file is finally costed. Often the fees entered correspond to one of your Creditors. T.L.A. allows you to enter the Creditor code and associated information and it then automatically posts the Purchase to the Creditor’s file and General Ledger. This saves having to enter two separate parts of the system. It also links the transactions (Client and Creditor) so that they can be reported on together, if required.


When you start the DISBURSEMENTS program, T.L.A. initially asks you for a Client code. If you cannot remember the file number, press <F9> to initiate a search. T.L.A. will check that the code does not refer to a file that is closed.


Typically, the screen will now look like this:



The file will be displayed with its corresponding Name, Address and Matter Re. Also the current Disbursement, Client and Trust balances are displayed on the left of the screen.


Next you must enter the details of the transaction. There are several fields to enter:


Name                  Comments


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.) This is the date the transaction was received by you.


DESCRIPTION Here you enter the details of the transaction, eg. COURIER FEES.


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.


VALUE                This is the value of the Disbursement. This amount can be negative if you are reversing a previously incorrect entry. It represents the full value of the amount that will be recovered from the Client. The amount should be entered ex-GST. This is because GST will be charged when the File-bill is entered.


G/L REVENUE/ASSET      Here you must enter the General Ledger account you wish T.L.A. to post the VALUE to. It must be a Revenue or an Asset account.


CREDITOR   If you wish to post the transaction to the Creditor sub-system, you should enter a Creditor code here. A typically scenario would be: you receive a bill from a courier company for transport of documents; you would post the value of the bill (less GST) to the Client’s file and you would also wish to create a Purchase in the Creditor’s file (assuming the courier is one of your creditors. You may leave this field blank, if there is no Creditor associated with the transaction. If you do not remember the Creditor’s code, press <F9> to initiate a search.


G/L EXPENSE/ASSET  Here you must enter the General Ledger account you wish T.L.A. to post the Purchase value (less GST) to. It must be an Expense or a Liability account. This field is skipped if there is no Creditor entered.


GST VALUE  This is the amount of GST billed to you by the Creditor. This field is skipped if there is no Creditor entered.


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


At the end of the DISBURSEMENT 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 DISBURSEMENT, you can only remove it by entering a negative DISBURSEMENT i.e. the same entry but with a negative value.


Files updated by the Disbursement program:


Client/Trust master-file:        The Client’s Disbursement balance is updated with the value (ex-GST) of the transaction.


Client/Trust transaction file:  A transaction is entered with the details of the transaction.


Creditor master-file:  If you have entered a Creditor code, the balance of the Creditor will be updated by the total transaction value (inc-GST).


Creditor transaction-file:       A Purchase transaction will be created with the details of the Disbursement. The their-reference number field will contain the Client’s file number.


General Ledger master-file: Two, four or five accounts are updated by this transaction type. Initially, the asset/revenue account will be posted to and the corresponding entry will be made to then Disbursement Ledger account. Then, if a Creditor code was entered, T.L.A. will update the Trade Creditor account with the full value of the transaction, the relevant expense/liability account with the ex-GST value and the GST account with the value of the GST (if the GST value is not zero).


General Ledger transaction file:      A transaction is entered with the details of the transaction for each General Ledger account updated.


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

Return to Table of Contents  Return to Table of Contents