Some clients want to receive their bills in electronic format ("e-bills") rather than on paper. Usually this means they are using auditing software to read the bills and analyze them.
In order for a program to read a bill, the bill must be in a specific format that the software understands. Simply reprinting the bill to disk won't work, because the format is not correct.
Also, you may want to print a copy of the bills on paper for your own records. The paper bills show the previous balance, payments, and other details that are not included in the e-bills. So the matter must have two bill formats: one for the paper bills and another one for the e-bills.
To meet this need, RTG created RTG E-Bills. It works with RTG Bills to create e-bills in the formats required by your clients. After you install RTG E-Bills, you will see a new menu choice in RTG Bills: Bills > Reprint As E-Bills.
Different clients require different electronic bill formats. However, there is an industry-standard format called LEDES 1998B, and we support this format and a few other common formats with RTG E-Bills. New formats are added as necessary.
RTG E-Bills creates a separate disk file for each e-bill. The files are named with the matter number and bill number. For example, the file 345-2-1045.txt would be an e-bill for matter 345-2, with bill number 1045.
Setting up your billing system to create e-bills properly can be time-consuming. Usually the client will assign a code to each of your matters. For example, the client might use a claim number to identify the matter. You must enter the client's code for each matter into RTG Bills (in the Matter Reference field), so that RTG E-Bills can include it in the e-bills. Other information, such as timekeeper classifications, may also be required.
Most e-bill formats require that you identify each fee and expense with a code. The LEDES 1998B format uses task codes, activity codes, and expense codes. You must enter the codes in the code tables in RTG Bills and set each matter to use the proper code tables.
Once it is set up, however, the creation of e-bills is easy. It is just like reprinting bills on paper, except they come out in disk files in the Ebills folder within the RTG Bills folder. RTG Bills knows which matters require e-bills, so it will automatically skip over the rest.
The first step in using RTG E-Bills is to find out what format your client requires. Common formats are LEDES 1998B, TyMetrix, and LitigationAdvisor.
The LEDES 1998B format is an industry standard. There should be no variations from one client to the next if they use this format.
TyMetrix says it uses LEDES 1998B, but they have several special requirements. Therefore, it is important to know if your client needs the TyMetrix format, so RTG E-Bills will work correctly.
LitigationAdvisor is another popular format. It has provision for several client-defined fields, so it is important to find out exactly what information your client requires in the e-bills.
If your client does not accept one of these formats, then you must contact RTG to determine if RTG E-Bills can create the required format. Ideally, we would like the specifications and several sample bills.
We also need the following information:
In addition to the format of the bill, you need to know what codes are required by the client. Although there are standard codes (known as the UTBMS codes), clients are free to change the codes to their own liking, and usually they do.
Fee transactions usually require task codes and activity codes. Expense transactions usually require a single expense code. However, not all formats use all three types of codes.
Do not send the codes to RTG. You will use the codes to create code tables in RTG Bills.
RTG Bills lets you enter a task code and an activity code for every fee and expense transaction. This is optional, and while you may have used activity codes, you probably have not used task codes in the past.
For the LEDES format, each fee transaction has both a task code and an activity code. Each expense transaction has an expense code.
In RTG Bills, you need to create two code tables:
Here are examples of codes taken from the UTBMS standard code list:
|A101||Plan and prepare for|
The "L" codes are task codes, the "A" codes are activity codes, and the "E" codes are expense codes.
You must get the list of codes required by your client, so you can create code tables in RTG Bills.
Requirements: RTG Bills Version 2.27 or above. We strongly recommend using the latest version of RTG Bills.
Please contact RTG if you need an e-bill format different from the LEDES 1998B or TyMetrix formats.