From time to time, it is necessary to issue a refund to a client. This article will address the following situations:
- When a client has made an overpayment.
- When a client will receive a refund of all or part of previously paid fees or expenses on an hourly matter.
- When a client will receive a refund of all or part of a previously paid project or subscription fee matter.
When a bill has been overpaid and a refund will be issued to the client, the process is very straight forward. First, add a refund by using the blue add button. Next, choose the matter in connection with the overpayment. Centerbase will list the overpayments in the lower half of the window. Be sure to choose what type of payment will be made to the client for the refund, i.e. check, credit card or other, and the account from which the funds will be withdrawn. Check the boxes by the payments that will be refunded. If there are more than one payment being refunded, Centerbase will add them together in the Amount.
If the refund will be made by check, it will be added to the list of checks to be printed when Save & Close is selected. A check can be printed immediately by unchecking the "Print Check Later" box. Once this has been done a "Print Check" button will display next to the Save & Close button.
The refund will then be recorded in the general ledger as well as in the matter record, and matter balances will be adjusted accordingly.
Refunds on Hourly Fee Matters
If an hourly matter has a $0 balance but a refund needs to be issued to the client:
- Enter a negative billing entry.
- If the amount should be deducted from a timekeeper's fee allocations, it will need to be a negative time entry for that timekeeper.
- If instead it is for an expense, a negative billing entry should be made using the system default Hard Cost Advanced/Received account that your firm uses for billable matter expenses for the Charge Account.
2. Next, generate a bill that will include the negative entry(ies) and post it.
3. Now add a refund for the matter using the instructions in the section above. The bill that includes the negative billing entry will be listed instead of the client overpayments.
Refunds on Project or Subscription Fee Matters
Before a refund can be issued on a project or subscription fee matter, a new hourly fee arrangement will need to be added and activated. Then the steps above for refunds on hourly fee matters can be followed.
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or require further information regarding client refunds.