Are your law firm invoices helping or hurting you?
I’ve seen far too many legal bills that are confusing, disjointed, filled with abbreviations that are difficult to decipher or don’t contain enough information to understand what was done and what the client is actually paying for.
Watch the video below (or scroll down if you prefer to read) for tips on how to send invoices that help, instead of hurt, your practice.
Invoices are a communication tool. The client should be able to tell, just by reading your bill, exactly what has transpired in their matter and why. The easier your invoices are for the client to understand, the faster you will get paid, and the less friction there will be between you and the client.
First and foremost, your bills and invoices should communicate the value of the service you are providing to the client. Relate the work performed back to the client’s objectives that were outlined at the initial consultation. Make sure that your client knows how the work you performed will benefit them.
Send Bills that are Easy to Understand
If the client can’t understand what your bill says, they will not want to pay for it.
Don’t use legal jargon.
Your bills should clearly state:
- What was done
- By whom and why
- The fee charged
- Any outstanding previous balance
- Remaining retainer balance
- The payment due date
- How payments can be made.
Develop guidelines for everyone in your firm so that everyone uses consistent style and phrasing in their billing entries.
Include your contact information on every bill, and the name of the person to contact about billing questions or discrepancies.
Does your billing system need an overhaul? Give me a call!
See more articles and videos on billing and fees:
- How Much Should Lawyers Charge?
- Are Your Invoices Hurting Your Law Practice?
- Get Paid Faster: Proactively Communicate with Clients [video]
- Tools to Communicate with Clients About Fees [video]
- How to Avoid Surprise Bills [video]
- How to Talk to Clients About Fees [video]
- What To Do If A Client Questions Your Bill [video]
- 5 Ways to Improve Cash Flow
- Are Free Consultations a Waste of Time?
- What Should Your Engagement Agreement Include?