Anticipated Payments in LEAP Legal Bookkeeping

If we weren’t dealing with Legal Firms and more specifically Legal Trust Accounts there would be no need for “Anticipated Payments.” Legal Firms often receive money in advance into their General Trust Account which can be used for either direct payment of costs relating to the matter (eg.Barristers Fees) or for payment of the Legal Firms Invoices relating to that matter (providing they have a signed Cost Agreement in place and that they have given the client 7 days notice of their intention to withdraw fund from the clients trust account to pay their invoice ie. a Trust to Office Transfer).
The Regulations governing Legal Trust Accounts require that the Law Firm must have actually “Paid” any 3rd Party Disbursements before they are allowed to do a Trust to Office Transfer (TTOT). The reason for this is that some firms were writing cheques for the disbursements then putting them in a drawer for a couple of months but they were withdrawing the clients funds to pay their own invoice via a TTOT.
Therefore “Anticipated Payments” name for “Account Payable” that are specifically relating to Client Disbursements.
Accounting Treatment
Although LEAP Cloud allows you to monitor these accurately within the Matter in LEAP, the accrual does not flow through to wither Xero or MYOB with the Office Account Integration. Therefore if the Law Firm is reporting on an accrual or hybrid basis you would need to manually enter this adjustment at the end of the month to account for it in both your BAS and Management Accounts.

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Onsite v Offsite Bookkeeping

“Bookkeeping” is a broad term that can be used to describe any of the number of different levels of skill required to provide a business owner accurate information about the accounts of their company. Bookkeeping tasks can range from basic data entry of creditors invoices through to providing detailed monthly reports to analyse profitability, budgets and cashflow.

The level of service you can expect from your bookkeeper depends on the level of skill of the bookkeeper you appoint to look after your accounts. At Books Onsite we provide a premium bookkeeping service which encompasses all levels of the bookkeeping function right through to management accounting reports to enable you to analyse your companies profitability. We believe the only way that this level of service can be provided is by us coming to your site on a regular weekly basis.

Here are some of the reasons we believe an onsite service enables us to provide a superior bookkeeping function:

  • Relationship Building

    We come to your premises. This means we get to know you, your business and your staff. This enables us to sit down with you and understand what information and in which format is most important for you to assist you in analysing your business performance.

  • Security

    All files are kept on your premises. There is no time wasted sending files back and forth from your office to ours. This also provides better security for your source documents and your data files.

  • Dedicated bookkeeper

    One bookkeeper is allocated to you to look after all of your bookkeeping functions. If this work is done offsite, the work is usually shared around by various people (some not necessarily located in Australia).

  • Regular Service

    We will establish a regular day or days each week that suits you. This way, all of your staff, clients and suppliers know that any accounts enquiries can be followed up on a particular day each week.

  • Comprehensive Analysis

    We can sit down with you to review monthly financial reports such as profit & loss, balance sheets, cashflow and actual v budget comparisons. If there are any amendments required we can update your accounts immediately and re-run the reports.

  • Accountability

    There is more accountability in an onsite service as you know exactly how many hours we are working each week.

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How a good bookkeeper can save you $$$

One of the first things we do when we get a new client is to perform an audit on the clients current bookkeeping systems to see if there are areas where we can implement efficiencies within the bookkeeping process. In nearly all cases, we are able to reduce the number of hours required to perform the role which results in cost savings to the client.

Every client is different and you have to get to know the intimate details of how a business operates to determine if there are any steps in their business process that are being duplicated and can be eliminated or refined to create a more efficient system.

One process that is reasonably standard across all clients is the payment of suppliers and employees. MYOB M-Powered Services allows you to pay your supplier and employees directly from your MYOB software. Many clients are already exporting their payment files directly to their banking interface via an .aba file. M-Powered takes this one step further, allowing the bookkeeper to process any payments as directed by the client, however the payment file will not be sent to the bank until it is approved by the client. This adds an extra level of security and also eliminates the extra step of having to enter the payment details within your banking software.

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