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It is the time of year when your firm may need to change the hourly rates for your partners, associates, and paralegals. What is the most efficient way to do this to ensure that your 2012 billing will go smoothly?

 In the spirit of holiday giving, Eastern Legal Systems would like to present some tips and tricks for changing billing rates in three popular systems:

  • Sage Timeslips
  • LexisNexis PCLaw
  • LexisNexis Billing Matters

 Click here to access our “How To” page  for specific instructions on changing rates in each of these three products.

 General advice for any billing system:
 Make sure that your billing department has a list of the new rates. You may need to update several rate scales for different clients or practice areas. The billing department should also know when the rates go into effect for new clients and for existing clients. Also let the billing department know about clients whose rates will not increase.

 If your timekeepers enter their own time, let them know that the December time must be in by the end of the year, so that the rate increase can be set at the beginning of January. Timely entry means faster billing and better cash flow. Both PCLaw and Timeslips can report on the number of hours entered for each day, so you can catch any missing days.

 The firm should update the standard retainer agreements to reflect the new rates.

 Before you start changing rates:
Always make a backup copy of your database before making changes. If you are working in Timeslips, remember that the rate changes go into effect immediately, so plan on making changes right after the December time has been entered. If your firm uses PCLaw, you can set the rate changes to be effective at a particular date, so the timing is not quite as critical.

 Eastern Legal Systems has extensive experience with all three of these billing systems, and has been helping clients with year-end closing and billing maintenance tasks for many years. If you need help or advice on how best to prepare your billing system for the transition to a new year, give us a call at 877-357-0555, or send an email request to info@easternlegalsystems.com