Start 2024 off with a bang by building rock-solid billing practices.

Take a moment to reassess your habits from last year. You and your team are busy, and no one enjoys chasing after clients for payment of outstanding invoices. It’s time to develop and refine your collections strategy. You can make your bill collecting process easier by making a few basic adjustments to your client intake procedures, payment processes, and client communication.

This blog is repurposed from our 2022 blog “Building Better Billing”.

1. We will vet our clients.

We know that there is no one-size fits all approach to finding the best clients but interviewing potential clients carefully and thoroughly can help you avoid major pitfalls down the road.

Your consult should help you answer these questions:

  • Am I a good fit for this client? Can I help them succeed?
  • Is this client a good fit for me?
  • Is the roadmap for this client clear? Will they follow my standard process?
    • Pro Tip! Using workflow management tools can help streamline your process & ensure expectations are clear. Need one to get started? Clio’s Matter Stages or Legalboards is a great place to start.
  • Does my client understand the payment terms?
  • Does this client pass the gut check? If a warning bell is going off, there’s probably a reason for that.

When the consultation ends and the client decides to retain you, both attorney and client should be on the same page and confident in the integrity of the other party.

2. We will be consistent in communicating with our clients.

Make it a habit to touch base with each client once a week. A simple, “Hi, I just wanted to remind you that XYZ are still needed to move forward” will go a long way to helping you keep a confident and calm relationship.

3. We will stick to our planned billing schedule.

We talked about the importance of managing Lockup in our last blog. Lockup refers to the amount of time it takes to produce a bill and get paid. Stick to a billing schedule and bill often. Billing as work concludes or as work is progressing is recommended.

4. We will follow up on all unpaid invoices in a timely fashion.

Your billing process should include scheduled follow up for any late or unpaid invoices. The longer a bill sits unpaid, the less likely it is to get paid. Get in the habit of following up. Each follow up should include a reminder of convenient ways to pay you by credit card, debit card, or eCheck to increase your chances of being paid. And don’t forget to utilize automated reminders from your practice management system.

5. We will make it easy for clients to understand our bills.

Be clear and concise with your invoices. And communicate in ways your client understands, not legal jargon. The ultimate goal your invoice is to give the client insight into what you are doing for them and prompt payment. Remember to offer easy ways to collect payment – online options with Clio Payments, Gravity Legal & LawPay are great examples.

6. We will let go of unprofitable clients.

Lean on your fee agreement to make this a simple and expected process. Client termination for non-payment should be outlined in your fee agreement & discussed during the consult. Small and repeated non-payment can easily snowball to a large deficit for your firm.

7. We will take digital security seriously.

This topic deserves an entire series to itself, so we won’t go deep here. It is your job to protect your firm and your clients from security breeches & hackers. Use everything at your fingertips to make that happen – multifactor authentication, security training, cloud-based technology and more. We know this takes time, but a well implemented security plan is worth the investment.

8. We will be intentional with handling our Trust Accounts and take advantage of the digital tools available.

Another topic that deserves an entire series to itself. We kicked of our blogs in 2023 with a focus on trust accounting, read more about the topic here. The top takeaways included maintaining accurate books, replenishing retainers and being prepared for an audit before it happens.

Need a deeper dive, reach out to the experts at CPN Legal.

9. We will make time to market our firm.

Marketing is a key element of any business. Your firm should have a clear marketing strategy in place and a budget to match. And never underestimate the power of Google Reviews and good referrals. 

10. We will regularly evaluate our firm’s financial reports.

Your firm’s books contain your formula for success. Spending real time reviewing and understanding your metrics and reports each month can go a long way towards helping you see the big picture. Your financials should include KPIs for your firm as well. An accurate P&L goes a long way, but without understanding your KPIs you will fall short of seeing the full picture.


We resolve to call CPN Legal if we get stuck with our billing, books, or invoices.

The team of experts at CPN Legal are here to help you build a better business. Reach out to get started.

Take control of your firm’s success in 2024 by leveraging a team of experts to help. Making updates to your law firm’s operations is an important investment but can be daunting to see all the tasks on a checklist. Prioritize the areas that will make small improvements and build on the momentum.

You’ve got a whole year of success to build! Don’t forget to celebrate along the way.