Barnwell Whaley Billing Procedure

Barnwell Whaley had a billing problem, chiefly because some of the attorneys were slow to review their bills, preventing them from being sent to clients on a timely basis. Of course, clients don't pay bills that they have not received, so these delays occasionally caused cash-flow problems for the firm. Clients also don't like huge bills that span months of activity when they are sent, so this was a problem that had to be solved.

Doing so required establishing a step-by-step procedure with well established time frames for each stage of the process, standards for writing the narrative descriptions that make up bills (to cut down on review and editing), a system to track every bill, and penalties for scofflaws.

The presentation below shows why the process was required, defines each step and shows how to write a narrative. Combined with careful tracking by me and my accounting department, it worked well.