In this article, you will learn how to create a bill for a single matter in Actionstep. You can also refer to the video below for a visual demonstration. Please note that the video also covers other topics such as the Matter Billing Options as well.
To create the bill, click on the 'Global Create Button' , click 'Show all...' and then click 'Bill' from the 'Billing' section, as per the screenshot below.
If you create the bill from outside a matter, you will be asked to add a matter association before anything else. Once you have selected a matter from the drop-down menu, you will be taken to the bill creation screen.
If you are creating the bill from within a matter, the association will automatically be added and you will be taken straight to the bill creation screen. In most cases, the unbilled charges will be tabulated, allowing the user to review the charges and approve the bill.
Quotes vs. WIP
If a quote has been made for the specified matter that does match the WIP, you will see a prompt similar to the one shown below. You can choose to bill out the quoted amount, the WIP, the sum of both, or manually enter a new amount by selecting 'Other...' The default selection on this window will depend on your Billing Settings.
First, let's look at the bill options at the top of the window.
By default, the 'Invoice date' will be set to the current date. This date is also used to track the age of the invoice. If a fee or disbursement from the WIP falls outside of the selected Invoice date, it will be excluded from the bill.
You can use the 'Invoice up to' date picker to specify the cutoff date for including fee entries and disbursements. You can also select the template to be used at this point, which can be changed on a bill-by-bill basis. You can also have different payment terms for each bill as well.
This panel will provide a quick summary of what you can expect to see on the final bill that goes out to the client.
You can override these balances by clicking on them. If you change any existing amounts, a prompt will pop up asking you how you would like to process the changes, as per the example below.
Depending on whether you are increasing or decreasing the amounts within the summary, the prompt will display either 'Fee increase behavior' or 'Fee decrease behavior' for the second field. If you are creating an entirely disbursement or fee, the creation window for the respective item will pop up instead.
The bill will be separated into clickable sections for 'Fees', 'Disbursements', 'Fee Allocations' and 'Additional Settings'. In this section, we will look at the first two, as they are the main billable items.
You can click into each section to either edit, create or confirm each of the items within them.
To edit an existing item, click on any of the blue text displaying the type, date, description, or amount of the item.
To create a new item, click on the 'Create time entry' button. When you are happy with the billable items, click on 'Fee Allocation'.
In this section, you can determine the commission recipient for each billable item. You can adjust each recipient's contribution based on the dollar amount or the split %, and the remaining field will be adjusted automatically to reflect your change, as per the screenshot below.
- Invoice Title: This serves as an internal reference and, depending on the template being used, may also be displayed above the time entry/disbursement details.
- Invoice Description: Again, this information can be used to replace the time entry/disbursement details section of an invoice, but not all templates will be pulling this information.
- Additional Notes: An additional information field that can be used on your invoice template, usually as a footnote.
Please note that you will need to understand the use of Merge Fields and Bill Templates to fully utilize the information provided above
Finalizing the Bill
When you are happy with all of the settings above, you have a few different options to choose from.
As per the screenshot above, you can either 'Save as Draft' which will save your progress but not publish the bill, 'Save + Approve' which will prepare the bill for production by approving it, 'Preview' the bill, or 'Cancel' - the last option will erase any progress that has been made on the current bill.
If you select 'Save + Approve' the bill will be pushed through to production, and you will be able to either print or email the bill as per the screenshot below.