Total Legal Accounting 3




USAGE: To enter File-bills. These are amounts invoiced to the Client for services rendered and Disbursements paid on behalf of the Client.


DISCUSSION: File-bills are used to associate a value you wish to your Client to pay to you. A Client does not actually owe you money until a File-bill is created. T.L.A. is an open-item system so the date of the transaction is relevant.


When you start the BILL-OF-COSTS 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 you wish to bill the amount. Aging of the account will start from this date. You may return the date to today’s date by pressing <F1>.


DESCRIPTION Here you enter the details of the transaction. It defaults to BILL OF COSTS, but you can change it to any 50 character description.


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. If you are using the BILL-BOOK option, the reference number will default to zero and you must enter a number associated with the current File.


GENERAL LEDGER ACCOUNT     Here you must enter the General Ledger account you wish T.L.A. to post the transaction value to. It must be a Revenue or an Asset account.


TOTAL VALUE This is the total value you intend to charge the Client, including GST.


DISBURSMENT COMPONENT   The Bill might contain a component of Disbursements (normally entered previously). If so, you should enter the value here. This value will be removed from the Disbursement balance for this File. The value entered here must be ex-GST.


GST COMPONENT Here you enter the value of GST on this Bill. If you press <F1>, T.L.A. will automatically calculate the GST assuming that the whole bill is GST-able. You may enter any value you wish into this field as long as a) the sign of the value is the same as the TOTAL VALUE field and b) the DISBURSMENT COMPONENT plus the GST COMPONENT do not together exceed the TOTAL VALUE.


DEFAULT SOLICITOR  This field defaults to the Solicitor code associated with this File. If you choose not to dissect the bill, the full value will be posted to the total billings for this Solicitor.


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


Next you may be asked if you wish to dissect the bill amongst more than one Solicitor. This question will only be asked if there is a Client component of the Bill (i.e. not all of it is taken up by Disbursements and GST). Typically the screen will appear as follows. Note that the value to dissect is only the Client Component.



Here you have two choices. You may dissect the Client Component by dollar or by percentage. Your choice depends on how the information is presented to you on the Solicitor’s daysheet.


If you choose to dissect by percentage, the screen will look like this:



Here you enter up to seven Solicitor codes with their respective percentage. T.L.A. will display the value of the dissection. Round-off errors are handled automatically. The total of the percentage must be 100%.


If you choose to dissect by value, the screen will look like this:



Here you enter up to seven Solicitor codes with their respective dissected values. T.L.A. will display the percentage of the dissection. Round-off errors are handled automatically. The total value must add-up to the Client Component and the sign of each dissection must be the same as the Client Component.


In either case, you may return to the previous screen by pressing <F8> or <PgUp>, or end the entry by pressing <F10> or <Enter> past the last field.


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


Finally you will be given the option to allocate the Disbursement Component to unallocated Disbursements. This runs the same program as the ALLOCATIONS function. The details of this function are discussed in SECTION


Files updated by the Bill-Of-Costs program:


Client/Trust master-file:        The File’s Client balance is updated with the full value of the transaction. The Disbursement Component is subtracted fro the Disbursement balance.


Client/Trust transaction file:  A transaction is entered with the details of the transaction. This can consist of a File-Bill transaction (with or without dissections) and a Disbursement to Client Journal (if there is a Disbursement Component).


General Ledger master-file: The Revenue/Asset account is updated with the total value (including GST). The Client Ledger account is updated with the value of the Client Component (ex-GST). The Disbursement Ledger is updated with the value of the Disbursement Component. Any GST component is posted to the GST account.


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.

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