Accounts and Trust Accounting
Most bar associations and law societies in the United States and Canada require that practicing attorneys maintain detailed records with respect to funds transactions involving clients, especially in the circumstance of monies managed in trust. The accounts functionality within Clio allows you to track the movement of firm and client funds to, from and between the bank accounts you use to operate your practice. This feature is intended to aid in the ethical and competent management of client funds, in addition to helping attorneys meet the transaction reporting requirements in most jurisdictions.
Accounts are intended to function as virtual analogues of a firm’s actual bank accounts to facilitate accurate tracking of both client and firm funds. Although there are no fixed limits to how many accounts any firm can hold, it is generally recommended that accounts within Clio should be correlated with a real-world account to provide genuine utility as an audit and reconciliation tool.
Bringing your Client Balances to Clio
The first step is to create your Accounts in Clio. Click here for instructions - please leave the Balance as $0.00.
Next, have a spreadsheet of the amounts in Trust you have for each of your clients that you want to bring into Clio.
You must assign each amount you are holding in Trust to the appropriate client and matter. To do so, go into your Trust Account and click on "Add". This action will reveal a transaction creation form wherein you are required to record the transaction date and amount, and optionally any other descriptive information such as retainer description, check numbers and/or matter reference information. Once the transaction has been successfully applied it will update the client ledger appropriately and the funds will optionally become available as a source of funds from which invoice payments can be received (drawn down against).
Enter in the details regarding the deposit into the trust account. You must ensure that the appropriate client and matter is chosen and that if there are multiple files with the same client, the appropriate matter is chosen from the drop down menu. Then click on Save:
Note that Closed Matters cannot be selected using this method. If you need to record transactions on a Closed Matter, go to the main Matters tab then click on "Closed". From the Closed Matter list, find the Matter that you want to record a transaction for, open it, and record the transaction from the "Transactions" sub-tab ensuring that you have selected the appropriate trust account from the Ledger dropdown.
Once you have entered the transaction you can see in the Transactions table that there is a column for the Client and the Matter. If any of the information is incorrect, or it is blank (i.e.: missing a matter) then click on the edit link and fix the deposit entry:
Keep entering in the deposits until all your trust balances are in Clio, referenced to the correct matter and client.