Don’t make the mistake of dismissing alternate billing as something only for simple “file a couple of forms” cases. Law firms are creating flat fee arrangements for matters of all types and clients love it. Easy TimeBill billing software for lawyers is a critical tool for creating a fee structure fair to both your practice and your client.
The Problem With Hourly Billing
The billable hour is great for lawyers because they can be sure they will be reimbursed for their time. However it’s not great for the clients, who want to know what their expenses are going to be and fear that the bill might balloon up into an unreasonable total. Plus, as it turns out, hourly rates aren’t as good for attorneys as many think. In the end it isn’t what you charge but what you collect, and getting paid especially for cases that don’t close successfully can be difficult. When the client pays a predetermined fee up front, you don’t have to worry about collections.
Using Easy TimeBill to Determine Your Fees
Determining alternate billing rates is not a matter of pulling numbers out of a hat. If you’ve been using Easy TimeBill in your practice then you already have the information you need. Someone familiar with the time billing software reviews past cases and determines how much each client was billed. You might be surprised how many cases fall into a predictable range of values, and somewhere in this range is your flat fee.
If you haven’t been using Easy TimeBill you can do the same calculations using your current billing software or manual billing records but you may find it is more difficult. Another option is to start using Easy TimeBill today with the intent of reviewing data in six months or a year and converting to alternate billing then.
Once you set a fee you aren’t done with analysis. Use Easy TimeBill legal billing and accounting software to continue to track hours and individual expenses even though you are billing flat fees. Compare expenses incurred to fees charged to see if you are over- or under-billing. In addition, expenses change over time and you may need to adjust your fees if your other costs change.
Law practice management software gives you more control over your law firm. You can not only run your practice more quickly and efficiently, but you can analyze your costs and see that you are making smart business decisions.