Clio's flat fee feature will charge a fee to the client automatically and allow you to track your time going forward on the Matter.
- If the Matter is already created, go to the Matter in Clio and click Edit:
- Go to Billing Preferences and choose the Flat rate option. You will then be able to select the user who will earn the flat rate on the Matter. Additionally, you can choose an optional existing Activity Category or simply enter in a custom flat fee rate. Then select Save Matter.
If it is a new Matter, you will see the same option to set a flat fee in the Create New Matter screen.
- A flat rate time entry will immediately be added to the Activities sub-tab of the Matter for the full amount of the flat fee.
If required, you can update the flat rate amount by editing the time entry. The Edit option will be available until the Matter has been billed.
After you associate a Matter with a flat fee, you will immediately be able to generate a flat fee bill to send to your client. To generate the bill, go to the Bills tab, then click Billable Clients. Generate the invoice for the client.
After billing your client for the flat fee, you can still keep track of all the time that you spend working on the Matter. All subsequent time entries will be tracked at a $0/hour rate. However, at any time you can manually enter in an amount in the Rate field if you choose to charge for the time. You can then optionally generate additional invoices to show your client the time or expenses that you record on the Matter.
What if I don't want to generate anything in the Billable Client Page?
If you want to track your time or even if you want to bill the flat fee at a later date, then mark the matter as Non-Billable. This means that any entries you make will not show up in the Billable Clients page.
What if I want additional items to show up on the flat rate bill, not just the flat fee on its own?
If you want to add other items to the flat rate bill, don't generate the bill until you have entered all charges on the Matter that you want to be part of the bill. If you enter in additional time and expenses and then generate the bill, you will see the flat fee together with the other time and expense entries recorded on the Matter. In the example below we entered in an expense entry prior to generating the bill:
What if I want to change my Matter from flat rate billing to hourly billing?
You can change the billing method from flat fee to hourly provided that a bill has not yet been generated on the Matter. To do so, go to the Matter, click on Edit and change your Billing Preferences to Hourly.
If you have already generated a bill on the Matter, you will have to delete the bill that you generated with the flat fee on it. Following that, you will be able to change the billing to hourly.