Consolidated billing means that when you have multiple matters open for a client, the billable items for those matters are combined into one bill. Without consolidated billing, each matter will have its own invoice.
In this article, we will take you through how consolidated billing works in Actionstep and the steps you must take to set it up.
|NOTE: You will need to enable consolidated billing in Admin> General Setting - Early feature / Early Access / Enable Consolidated Billing|
Contact Level - Switch
There are instances when you will not want to consolidate your bills and times when you will. To give you control over when consolidated bills are applied, you have a setting on each contact record that controls consolidated billing.
When consolidated billing is switched on for a contact, any matters where that contact is the client will be consolidated together.
You can find this by going to a contact record > Accounting Tab and clicking on consolidated billing.
The setting can be found in the accounting section of a contact record. Once enabled, additional settings can be defined.
|Invoice Template||This is the template that will be used when the consolidated bill is produced|
|Send to email address||Here you can define the email address or addresses that will receive a copy of the bill once it is produced.|
|Email template||This template will be used to email the consolidated bill once it is produced.|
|No. of copies to print||This controls the number of copies that are printed when the consolidated bill is produced.|
Creating Consolidated Bills
There are two ways you can create a consolidated bill. Matters will automatically be consolidated together if:
- All the clients on the bill match (Primary and any Secondary Clients), and
- That client(s) have consolidated billing set on their contact record, and
- The bill date of the invoices are the same
|TIP: The Mass Billing screen will have a column to show if the client has consolidated bills set.|
If you mass bill and any bills meet the conditions described in the list above then they will be consolidated automatically.
You can also create a draft bill from one matter at a time. If the system finds two draft bills for the same client(s) and that client(s) have consolidated billing set on their contact record, they will appear as consolidated.
If you create a consolidated bill one matter at a time, make sure that the invoice date is the same. If the invoice date differs, the invoices will not be consolidated.
|TIP: Just because you have set a contact record to use consolidated bills, does not mean that every bill must be consolidated. You can bill one matter and approve the bill for that matter then bill the second matter and approve that second bill separately. |
Only if you have bills from two or more matters in draft at the same time with the same bill date, will Actionstep consolidate them.
Editing a consolidated bill
When you open a consolidated bill it will, at first, present you with a list of the different matters that had billable items added to this bill.
You are able to evaluate and change the items with the other items from that matter that they came from. Just click on the invoice number link to open those billable items and make any applicable changes.
Paying consolidated bills
Once a consolidated bill is approved, it can be paid in the same ways that any other bill in Actionstep can be paid. See here for more information: How to pay an invoice
You will see a list of the sub-bills and you can choose how to allocate the payment amongst those bills. Alternatively, bills can be paid separately like any other bill in the system.
Mass Billing List
The Mass billing list will display when an invoice has been consolidated and will list ALL customers on the invoice and if the invoice should be emailed to more than one contact.
Q. Will the bill still consolidate if the customers match but they are listed in different order in the list of parties?
A. No, the primary participant (i.e. the first contact in the list must match).
For example, if the parties are listed like these two matters - then even though they match the invoices will not be consolidated.
Q. Will the invoice be emailed to all parties if it is consolidated or only the first contact listed in the list of parties under client/customer ?
A. Yes, just remember that you have to enable the matters to be billed in the matter billing options.