B3: Better Billing Bulletin

Vol. 7
Jun. 2008

Legal Aid Ontario's Lawyer Services & Payments Department (LSP) is happy to bring you this monthly Better Billing Bulletin. It's meant to provide you and your staff with information regarding tariff and billing practices. We hope you'll find it useful.

B3 Discretion Letters - Factors to address

Tariff Manual Chp. 2-19
If you are requesting discretion, please attach your discretion letter and dockets to your Online account. This will save time processing your request.

Your discretion letter needs to address the circumstances during the billing period that made the case exceptional, complex or more time-consuming than usual. Tell us what the case is about and not simply what you did. Your dockets must be specific with respect to the nature of each court appearance: "attend hearing" or "attend court" is not adequate.

In civil cases, please provide the date of the first case conference and the nature, number and outcome of each court appearance. This helps us determine whether you are entitled to additional tariff. Although motions are not subsequent pre-trials or case conferences and do not generate additional tariff, motions may warrant discretion.

B3 Authorized Disbursements Prior To Legal Aid Online

This Online billing category applies only to disbursements that were authorized by the disbursement team prior to 2004. Choosing this category when billing Online for disbursements incurred subsequent to 2004 delays payment of your account. In particular, please do not bill appeal transcripts or travel expenses as "Authorized Disbursements Prior". Please forward copies of court reporters' bills for appeal transcripts & receipts/invoices for travel expenses other than mileage & meals for us to add the disbursements to the certificate. Failure to do so will slow down your payment. If in doubt, please call OnLine Payables 416-979-2352 ex5521 or 1-800-668-8258 ex 5521 before using Authorized Disbursements Prior.

B3 Legal Aid Online Billing Hours

Legal Aid Online is available for billing between 5am and 11:55pm, 7 days a week, with the exception of occasional maintenance outages. Online billing is unavailable from 11:55 pm to 4:55 am, the 'wee' hours of the morning, to allow the overnight account batch processes that update the daily system transactions to proceed without technical disruption. If you are still online at 11:55 pm, you will be unable to complete your account entry . the system will boot you out. Please contact the Lawyer Service Centre should you have any questions.

B3 Revised Tariff and Billing Handbook

Have you seen our revised Tariff & Billing Handbook?

Please let us know if you have questions or if there are topics you'd like to see us cover by contacting the
Lawyer Service Centre (416) 979-9934 or 1-866-979-9934