Showing 1-20 of 82 products
PracticePanther Legal Software is a legal management solution for small to large practices specializing in areas including bankruptcy, personal injury, family, divorce, estate planning, litigation, criminal law and many more. The system... Read more
Recent recommendations: 117 recommendations
Clio is a cloud-based legal practice management solution suitable for small to large law firms. The platform enables lawfirms and other businesses in the legal industry to track important deadlines, manage client cases and documents,... Read more
Recent recommendations: 110 recommendations
Filevine is a cloud-based case management solution for small and midsize legal firms and legal professionals. It helps in managing case documents, communication and project management. Key features include bill and expense tracking,... Read more
Recent recommendations: 93 recommendations
With Amicus Online legal practice management software you can access your practice 24/7 from any computer or mobile device. Combine your contacts, cases and calendar in an intuitive system that helps you stay efficient. This next-generation... Read more
Recent recommendations: 71 recommendations
MyCase is a cloud-based legal management solution that helps attorneys in small size law firms to manage communications with their clients and carry out daily business operations. The solution also provides functionalities for accounting... Read more
Recent recommendations: 54 recommendations
Tabs3 Software offers practice management, case management and financials for small to midsize firms in any practice area. Tabs3 enables legal professionals to manage their schedule and matters as well as track their time and bill... Read more
Recent recommendations: 38 recommendations
MerusCase is a cloud-based legal practice management solution for small, midsize and large legal firms and businesses. It is HIPAA compliant and offers document management, time tracking, billing, calendaring and communication tools. The... Read more
Recent recommendations: 26 recommendations
Smokeball is a complete cloud-based legal productivity software to automatically record time for you, allowing you to increase your firm’s profitability and productivity by over 30%. Whether you bill hourly, fixed fee, or on contingency,... Read more
Recent recommendations: 24 recommendations
Needles, the most trusted name in case management is now offering an all-new web-based solution. With 30,000+ users and 2,600+ law firms we have combined decades of legal intelligence and reimagined it in the cloud. Needles offers... Read more
Recent recommendations: 11 recommendations
ProTempus is an on-premise practice management solution designed for small law firms. Key features include timekeeping/billing, contact management, document management, case management, AR, AP, GL and trust accounting. Two clicks make... Read more
Recent recommendations: 6 recommendations
TimeSolv is a cloud-based legal time tracking and billing solution that caters to law firms, accountants, consultants, architects, and freelancers, helping them manage daily business operations. TimeSolv integrates project management... Read more
Recent recommendations: 5 recommendations
Soluno is a Cloud-based time, billing, and accounting solution designed for law firms of all sizes. Soluno streamlines back-office processes – from time and expense entry, to receiving payments, to financial reports – while remaining... Read more
Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations
AbacusLaw is case automation software designed explicitly for law firms. The system works as a complete practice management solution that helps in managing workflows including time tracking, billing, and accounting operations. AbacusLaw... Read more
Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations
Conceptualized by a partner at a personal injury law firm, SmartAdvocate is a legal management platform that offers flexible deployment options and a modular suite of applications. In addition to case management, attorneys and their... Read more
Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations
Prevail is a one-stop-shop for managing your legal matters. The tools available to Prevail users are tightly integrated. This integration gives Prevail the ability to do multiple things automatically as a result of one action taken... Read more
Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations
Bilr is a cloud-based legal billing application, with built-in AI, that is designed to help law firms save time and increase profits. It includes speech-to-text functionality, which allows lawyers to submit invoices on the go. Bilr... Read more
Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations
Law Ruler is redefining what legal practice management and intake software should be for personal injury and mass tort law firms. It is built specifically for lawyers to acquire more cases and manage them better. With Law Ruler, you... Read more
Essential by Anaqua is a cloud-based legal management solution that helps law firms of all sizes to manage their patents, inventions. Key features include case management, document management, calendaring, docketing, time tracking,... Read more
Mitratech is a legal management system suitable for midsize to large corporate law firms. Key features include case management, contact management, document management, calendaring and docketing, time tracking, billing and invoicing... Read more
Avaza is a business management solution which includes features for project management, resource scheduling, online timesheets, expense management, online invoicing, recurring invoicing, quotes and invoices and more. Avaza also integrates... Read more
What Is Legal Billing Software?
Legal billing software is any technology that enables lawyers and law firms to track consulting time and receive payment for their services. These systems offer capabilities like time tracking, invoicing, and accounting.
Tracking billable hours using paper-based methods, or even spreadsheet programs such as Microsoft Excel, can be tedious and time-consuming. What’s worse, these methods create lots of potential for human error. Even after you’ve calculated billable hours, you’ll still need to generate invoices and stay on top of client accounts.
Accurate tracking of billable hours ensures a steady flow of revenue for your law firm or private practice. To automate the billing process and make sure billable time isn’t slipping through the cracks, you’ll need dedicated legal billing software. There are many different types of software that can streamline time tracking and billing for lawyers and legal departments. This guide will help you understand the major categories and features.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
Best-of-Breed Options vs. Practice Management Suites
Because billing is foundational to a law office’s operations, there are a number of stand-alone solutions on the market. Time tracking and billing modules are also integrated into more comprehensive practice management software suites. A practice management suite is a single system that manages all areas of your law practice.
If you need extensive case management, document management or contact management functionality in addition to time tracking and billing, you should definitely look into practice management suites. Some suites even integrate time tracking capabilities throughout the system’s modules. For example, you can track time in a document management module without having to use a timer.
If all you need is a better way to track billable hours, look into the many stand-alone solutions on the market created for this purpose.
Common Functionality of Legal Billing Software
Functionality of legal billing software can be divided into three categories: time tracking; bill preparation and payment; and general ledger.
Time Tracking Functionality
|Calendar||Calendar may be included, or software may integrate with a calendar application (e.g., Microsoft Outlook). Events created in your calendar can automatically feed into calculations of billable hours. In some systems, calendar information can be used to fill in gaps in billable time.|
|Multiple fee schedules/billing arrangements||Allows users to bill time in hourly, contingency, transactional, user-defined, flat fee (monthly, annual or user-defined), retainer fee and split fee increments.|
|Billing rates by timekeeper level||Allows users to bill by timekeeper level: e.g., individual attorney, partner, associate, practice area type and client levels. Primarily used by larger firms.|
|Automated time capture||Draws on calendar data, documents and tasks to fill in gaps in your billable time.|
|Stopwatch timers||Users can set timers to track each minute of billable time.|
|Activity codes||Allows users to assign activity codes to billable time, including the codes established by the American Bar Association (ABA). Users can also define their own codes.|
|Expense tracking||Allows users to track expenses associated with clients’ accounts.|
|Missing time reporting||Allows the system to report on gaps in your billable time.|
Bill Preparation and Payment Functionality
|Client invoicing||Automatically generates client invoices based on the billable time recorded in the system. Bills can be delivered via email, or electronically in Legal Electronic Data Exchange Standard (LEDES) format.|
|Customizable invoice templates||Allows users to customize invoices with their firm’s logo.|
|Past due notices||Automatically notifies clients when bills are past due. Some systems can also calculate late fees automatically.|
|Low retainer reminders||Sends automatic notices when clients’ retainer fees are getting low.|
|Credit card processing and EFT||Some systems allow users to accept credit card payments. Other systems allow for electronic fund transfer (EFT) payments via automated clearing house (ACH) processing as well as PayPal gateways.|
General Ledger Functionality
|Client account balances||Users can record invoices and payments and maintain account balances for all clients.|
|IRS filings||Automatically prepares IRS filings on the basis of information stored in the system.|
|Trust accounting||Allows users to manage trust accounts for clients and even author checks within the system.|
|Interest on Lawyer Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Accounting||IOLTA, which helps raise money for legal aid for those in poverty via interest earned on client funds, entails special accounting requirements that you can manage with your software. The software protects against accounting mistakes and automatically records paper trails in case of an audit.|
|Financial reporting||The system can automatically generate reports on information such as outstanding balances and client inactivity.|
What Type of Buyer Are You?
The type of legal billing software you choose will depend, in part, on your specific needs as a buyer. For example:
- Solo practitioner. If you have your own practice, you’ll really only need the most basic time-tracking capabilities. While features such as automatic time capture are obviously useful to all attorneys, they’re confined to expensive systems that might not be the best fit for solo practitioners.
- Small firms. Small firms should think critically about whether to go with a stand-alone billing solution or a practice management system. If you have special accounting, mobile access and/or payment needs, you may need to invest in a more robust solution.
- Large firms. Large firms will need extensive functionality for managing individual time-keepers and clients. Reporting features are also crucial for large firms to identify revenue opportunities. Finally, some legal billing systems include capabilities like those found in customer relationship management systems, which can be necessary for managing lots of clients.