Legal expense management is a necessary process for law firms to control job costs and bill clients accurately. By practising legal expense management, your firm will also be better equipped for budgeting and predicting future spending. In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about expense management and how it can streamline your law practice.
What is legal expense management?
Legal expense management is a system of giving legal firms instant insight into their client account spending and related legal costs. It includes tracking all the fees associated with executing a client’s job, for example, court or other legal institution’s fees and travel expenses.
The process also helps keep track of expenditure when your firm needs to cooperate on cases with other lawyers who are needed for their expertise and specialization.
Tracking internal and external expenses on a case-by-case basis ensures that you are able to make an accurate evaluation of the total costs your firm has incurred. From there, you are able to accurately bill your clients in a timeous manner.
In general, the process of legal expense management covers getting visibility of expenses, identifying and implementing cost-reduction opportunities, and effectively budgeting for future costs.
Today, legal billing software will support the system behind expense management. The software is usually a component of a law practice management platform, which gives you multiple areas of functionality to work more efficiently in your firm.
Why is it essential for law firms to have a system in place?
Corporate legal firms process thousands of client accounts invoices each year. Manually reviewing and reconciling these accounts can be time-consuming and leave the firm open to error. Not to mention that the sheer size of the task can be overwhelming for the teams working on it.
Often, firms don’t have any reliable system to enforce billing standards. This causes staff attorneys to spend more time than they should be sorting through incoming invoices and subsequently accurately billing clients.
Besides the burden it places on staff, law firms end up over or undercharging each year because of undetected errors.
Benefits of using legal expense management software
Legal expense management software is a fantastic solution for law firms to effectively and accurately manage costs and keep on top of the workload.
There are incredible benefits to be realized, including:
- Reduced legal spending and enforced billing guidelines to ensure accurate client invoicing each and every time
- Less time spent on time-consuming tasks like processing and authorizing invoices
- Tracking and reporting matter budgets by time period or matter phase, thereby improving the accuracy of forecasts in the long term
- Tracking actuals and accruals against budgets for the duration of the matter lifecycle
- Maintaining an automatic audit trail of all bill amendments and approvals.
- Automating manual processes that enhance the productivity of team members and give counsel much-needed time to focus on high-value work.
- Reliable, comparable, accurate, and consistent information across all matters all the time
- Enhanced collaboration with internal teams and external firms, contributing towards improved matter outcomes and high-quality firm relationships
- Providing apples-with-apples comparisons while helping to review law firm rates and value for money offerings.
- Offering competitive, comparable, and fairer proposals to clients
- Considerable improvement in quality of financial data and execution of standard billing processes
- Improved governance and visibility on staffing and billing standards
It is clear that legal expenses management software can effectively manage costs and mitigate human error. In short, it’s just the platform you need to elevate your law firm’s level of productivity and service offering.
About Amberlo legal billing software
Amberlo offers the perfect solution for legal expense management at your law firm. Our purpose-built software is specifically designed to maximize savings, and assure your legal practice of consistency and compliance on all legal matters and documents.
Our legal billing feature enables you to carry out the full billing workflow. You can customize, create, send, and approve bills, as well as automatically apply discounts.
By letting our platform take care of expense reconciliation, you can channel energy towards higher-value projects that require your time.
With valuable resources being poured into legal expense administration, it only makes sense for law firms to leverage technology built specifically for this purpose.
Your law firm deserves the very best efficiency-enhancing tools that enable it to flourish. Get in touch with our team and give your law firm the best chance to succeed.