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Lawyers learn it pays to read the new Better Billing Bulletin

Posted on: Friday, April 4 /2008

Lawyers who provide Legal Aid services will find it pays to read the Better Billing Bulletin.

The bilingual monthly e-bulletin is e-mailed to lawyers and posted on the LAO website to support better billing practices.

The idea is to reduce the inventory of unpaid accounts and to pay lawyers faster by providing information they need to bill better.

Account processing is heavily automated, and usually works well. Approximately 70 per cent of all accounts are paid within 30 days, and 90 per cent are paid within 60 days. But computers can't recognize accounts that are incorrectly completed or lacking information; these accounts end up in an "inventory" of unmatched accounts

Lawyers who do not fully understand the system are the most likely to have unmatched accounts. Payments get delayed, lawyers get frustrated and LAO staff have to manually process the accounts.

The "B3" is short, snappy and filled with numerous "links" that lawyers can click to connect to detailed billing information online. Click on the specific link for "certificate effective date," for instance, and you are linked to the exact page in the tariff manual.

Please have a look at B3 - the Better Billing Bulletin

Lawyer Learning

In addition to B3, Lawyer Payments staff have been tracking all the "non-matched account errors" in the account inventory so they can identify the kinds of errors that lawyers are making on a regular basis and introduce Lawyer Learning Sessions.

A dozen lawyers and/or their administrative assistants identified as having challenges with billing were invited for an evening meal with staff, where they learned about the billing process and asked questions.

For six months following the lawyer learning session, the accounts of these lawyers will be tracked to chart progress. If the same errors occur, lawyers will be contacted to see what additional help can be offered to support their billing practices.

If you'd like to attend a Lawyer Learning session, call: (416) 979-9934, 1-866-979-9934

Better Billing Bulletin

Please have a look at B3 - the Better Billing Bulletin