Compliance

Bridging the gap

The importance as well as the difficulties associated with legal accounting are huge, no matter the size of the firm. There are tough rules on compliance which are essential for both the survival and the success of a law firm. Lawyers are highly scrutinised, and many compliance issues revolve around the businesses accounting, despite the individual firm’s expertise being in law rather than accounting. Similarly, accountants do not always understand complex legal issues, so automatically there is a cross-over point in knowledge, and any legal accounting software must bridge this gap if it is going to be adopted by a legal practice.

Peter Maley, Director at The Glasgow Law Practice says…

“Nowadays, successful legal practices should all use specialised legal accounting software rather than general purpose accounting software, as this will not highlight legal compliance issues.”

Legal Accounts Compliance

Run your law firm like an Accountant

Even though you probably have none of the training or experience, we have the tools to allow you to run your firm like an Accountant.

I think it’s fair to say that most lawyers pay little or no attention to legal accounting, despite its importance. Seems odd when it’s the paperwork, communication, and general skilled organisation of legal accounting which must run smoothly, seamlessly and compliantly before any court room appearance can take place or house can be sold. In years gone by, before software platforms, such a system was highly complex, as it is today, but much of the time-consuming work (which has no margin for error) can be absorbed by trustworthy and reliable legal accounting software.

Lets be honest, it’s not the ‘fun part of the job, but you still need to comply with Law Society and SRA Accounts Rules.

Watch this video

This is why having compliant legal software is so important to law firms

Legal Accounts

How we keep your law firm compliant

  • Accuracy –  P&L Account, Balance Sheet, Aged Fees/Bills, WIP by Fee Earner, department, work type and so on.
  • Goal Setting – Enable the firm to set goals and monitor the performance by the firm overall, by department, work type and fee earner.
  • In-built Reporting – A standard selection of over 35 reports covering all your compliance and practice monitoring needs. We can add bespoke reports to these to meet your firm’s requirements.
  • Credit & Debit Slips – Integrated option to send credit, debit and other financial requests to your Cashroom. Cashroom can approve and process, edit and process or delete slips as required. Slips can be processed immediately or stored to a ‘batch’ for processing later. Slips can be for client’s and/or firm’s transactions. A ‘Queued postings’ tab gives you visibility on how much the balance on the ledger will be once any related slips have been processed. Slips can be future dated to inform Cashroom when funds are expected or required.
  • Bank Reconciliation – Easy to use feature in 3 different formats. We’ll help you choose the best option for your firm. Full Reconciliation report shows Reconciled and Unreconciled Items and a reconciliation statement. Ability to filter on Unreconciled/Reconciled items, search on value, reference, etc. and multi-select, total and reconcile chosen items.
  • Accounts searching – easy retrieval of Matter Accounts or Firm’s Accounts using our available search tools. Name search, code search, phrase search and Most Recently Used options from enquiry and posting windows. Easily add Matter and Firm’s Accounts to your personal Favourites folder to recall these on demand.
  • Posting options – A variety of options are available for selection: Client and Firm live postings; Batch Processing where a number of postings are collected together for posting at the same time; Multi-Analysis (one-to-many) posting where several items make up a larger payment into or from your bank; Recurring postings where postings are stored and ‘trigger’ as an optional posting at regular or timed intervals.
  • Bank to Bank transfer – A simple nominal/firm account to nominal/firm account posting.
  • Fee Processing or Billing – A variety of options are available to process Fees and Outlays (Bills and Disbursements) be it for private or legal aid clients.
  • WIP Management – Work In Progress values can be reduced or cleared through our billing features. WIP can also be Written Off and time postings deleted as required.
  • Cash Statements – Fully integrated and able to display both posted and ‘pending’ entries to give you the flexibility you need. Items can be excluded from the Cash Statement as required.
  • Purchase Ledger – An in-built but optional area to process and monitor payments to and from Suppliers to make sure you know who to pay and when. Includes a ‘Suggested Payments’ feature to give you options on where your money goes.

A few more ways we keep your Law Firm compliant

  • Fully Law Society compliant; one system holding your client/matter and firm’s accounts all in place.
  • Integrated checks and balances mean you never need to have regulatory concerns. Our single software system and our expert team of Legal Accountants take care of this for you.
  • Float or Surplus – Available for viewing at any time, this tells you if you have excess funds available for transfer to your firm bank or how much of a ‘cushion’ you have.
  • Accounts Certificate – Available to you as a Template within your Nominal or Firm ledger.
  • Dynamic updating of Law Society Float/Surplus values as postings are entered
  • On screen warning when Law Society Float/Surplus is in deficit
  • Law Society Float/Surplus calculation can be configured to reflect the needs of the firm (based on Client balances or Matter balances)
  • Daybook (record of daily postings) closure is disabled until posting amounts are ‘square’ (showing equal amounts of credits and debits)
  • Backdating of postings is not possible
  • Invested Funds (Other Funds/Deposits) accounts can be created and updated to reflect the true accounting position (to include Bridging Loans where appropriate)
  • Invested Funds balanced can be reflected in the firm’s Nominal Ledger
  • Bank Reconciliation features are included as standard allowing the firm to reconcile monthly, weekly or daily
  • Allows distinct recording of Inter-Client (Inter-Matter) transfer postings and dedicated reporting on these entries
  • Allows Money Laundering data to be entered against each Client Record and allows reporting on compliance status or otherwise
  • Easy creation of Holding Ledger as required by Law Society of Scotland
  • Ability to report on Credit balances held and how long the credit has been held for (e.g. in excess of 2 months)
  • Ability to report on Credit balances held for specified values or in a range of values (e.g. up to £50.00).
  • Ability to produce an Accounts Certificate from a Template stored in the software
  • Ability to record and report on Power of Attorney’s, by an Attorney who is a member of the firm
  • Ability to record Loans as required
  • Ability to store reports and records as pdfs (or other chosen format) for viewing at a later date (e.g. in the event of a Law Society or other inspection/audit)
  • Ability to produce VAT reports
  • Ability to submit VAT Returns in compliance with MTD (Making Tax Digital) legislation
  • All standard accounting functions and record-keeping is included as standard to allow recording and reporting of a Trial Balance
  • Figures broken down per Accounting Period
  • Balancing of books
  • Storage of data on a durable medium
  • Can be configured to include an Office Balance on a Matter Account (ledger)
  • Will be configured to prevent postings creating a Client balance debit

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