Beyond the Basics: Exploring Advanced Accounting Features in CosmoLex

Beyond the Basics Exploring Advanced Accounting Features in CosmoLex

If there’s one part of running a law firm that doesn’t get enough attention in law school, it’s accounting for lawyers. Sure, you might hear about the basics—how to log billable hours, keep track of client expenses, and maybe even draft a simple invoice.  

But when it comes to advanced legal accounting tasks like complying with tax regulations, managing trust accounts, or managing year-end to-do lists, you may (understandably) feel way out of your depth.  

Thankfully, there’s a solution that lifts the weight of accounting from your shoulders: CosmoLex’s comprehensive law firm accounting software offers law firms advanced features that boost efficiency and precision in accounting processes.  

Your law school might not have offered courses in accounting, but with these four features, your firm can be head of the class. 

1. Advanced time and expense tracking

CosmoLex’s time and expense capture software keeps your firm’s time and money from falling through the cracks. It offers time-saving, profit-boosting features like:  

Flexible timesheets 

CosmoLex’s time tracking software allows you to run multiple timers while tracking matters for each individually.  

The timesheet function automatically posts the tracked time to the appropriate individual matters, tracks time across matters, and bulk posts time to multiple matters, all through a simple, intuitive interface. You can enter time however you find easiest—whether minutes, hours, or hours and minutes—and even add a flat fee timecard to an hourly matter.  

You can also create a timecard directly from other activities, including: 

  • Events 
  • Notes 
  • Tasks 
  • Emails 

You can even tag these events as billable before they even occur so that every activity gets added to the client’s invoice. This allows you to keep any billable tasks from falling through the cracks so you get paid what you’re owed.  

Multiple billing methods 

Law firms have complex billing needs, and keeping up with them manually can be time-intensive. With CosmoLex’s robust billing software, you can specify your billing method and automatically update settings as appropriate, including: 

  • Hourly: Bill based on specified task rates instead of time. Include billing for expenses, and automatically import time and expense entries in invoices.  
  • Fixed fee: Select billable and no charge status for fixed fee matters and automatically import them into your invoices. 
  • Contingency billing: Select billable and no charge status for percentage fees and any expense cards for a matter. Calculate the final cost after you enter the judgment amount so you can be sure every entry is accurate. 

Robust expense capture and tracking 

You incur many expenses while you’re out and about meeting with clients and attending court cases. Trying to keep up with all your receipts and enter expenses manually after the fact can lead to errors and waste time you could be spending on billable tasks.  

CosmoLex allows you to enter legal and time expenses right in matters and upload receipts from your smart device as they happen. These features reduce the effort of expense capture and tracking while helping build more accurate invoices. 

With these easily accessible, built-in accounting and time tracking features, one Toronto solo law firm was able to eliminate manual accounting processes and make data-driven adjustments to task distribution that allowed them to focus on client work and optimize their practice.


9 Tips to Boost Law Practice Success by Getting Back to Basics

When was the last time you thought about how your law firm conducts its daily operations? Or examined all the little “must-do” tasks to see what could be done more efficiently?

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2. Customized financial workflows

Financial management involves a lot of tasks, many of which are repeatable…and often tedious to manage. 

CosmoLex’s customization features allow you to set up templates that create, group, and track individual tasks within processes called workflows. Assign these tasks to individual matters and even attach a timecard to each task, improving efficiency and saving you and your administrative team countless hours.  

With these customizations, you can:  

  • Assign tasks to specific team members 
  • Assign task due dates 
  • Set task priorities so the most important duties get handled first 
  • Designate certain tasks as contingent upon completion of previous tasks, improving team coordination 

…so you can stay organized, use your resources more effectively, and deliver results with greater consistency and accuracy. The result? Simple, streamlined workflows that make financial management easier and more efficient—and effective—than ever before. 

3. Sophisticated budget management

Another major challenge is organizing your matter expenses correctly. There are two categories of reimbursable costs: 

  1. Hard/direct costs: Expenses paid directly out of pocket and directly linked to specific matters and transactions 
  2. Soft/indirect costs: Expenses considered as part of your practice’s overhead 

Since hard costs are directly reimbursed while only a portion of soft costs may be attributed to your client, tracking them separately is very important. But sometimes the line can get blurred, or you may not be sure which category the expense fits in.  

This can lead to a loss of revenue or even accidentally charging a client for an expense that should be counted as overhead. 

With CosmoLex, you can set up how these costs are posted per matter billing type as either an expense (reimbursable client cost) that impacts profit and loss or an asset (advanced client cost) that impacts the balance sheet.  

Once you do so, CosmoLex’s expense management platform automatically puts matter expenses in the correct category so you can get reimbursed correctly and charge the client accordingly. Correct categorization allows you to see exactly where and how much money you’re spending so you can forecast and budget accordingly. 

4. Integrated financial analysis

CosmoLex provides comprehensive financial reporting and analytics for law firms, allowing you to gain valuable insights that can guide you as you work to grow your firm. You can generate, preview, and download various reports, including: 

  • Accounting 
  • Accounting (Matters) 
  • Banking and reconciliation 
  • Time and billing 
  • Tax collection/payment 
  • Financial productivity 
  • Matter activities 
  • Trust 
  • Profit and loss 

Analyzing these reports gives you a holistic view of your finances in real time, which helps you in several ways. 

First, you can identify the most profitable areas of your practice and adjust resource allocation accordingly so you can maximize financial returns while minimizing unnecessary expenditures.  

Second, they also highlight unfavorable trends—like an increase in uncollectible accounts or a decrease in billable hours—so you can make changes before they damage your bottom line. 

Third, these reports and analytics empower you to make informed decisions about your firm’s direction both at the macro and micro levels. Assess whether it’s time to expand locations, invest in new software, or bring on partners and new services. You can also make data-driven improvements to your performance and processes so you can optimize your time and financial resources. 

By regularly analyzing these detailed analytics and making data-driven decisions, you encourage sustained growth and profitability—pillars of law firm success. 

Optimize your accounting process with CosmoLex 

CosmoLex’s law firm accounting software goes beyond managing finances—it empowers your firm to thrive and grow. When you integrate CosmoLex into your operations, you leverage advanced tools that ensure accuracy, enhance efficiency, and enable informed strategic decisions that drive success. 

Are you ready to transform your accounting processes and optimize your firm’s potential? Schedule a demo or sign up for your free trial today to see how CosmoLex can help you simplify financial management, boost your bottom line, and grow sustainably.


9 Tips to Boost Law Practice Success by Getting Back to Basics

When was the last time you thought about how your law firm conducts its daily operations? Or examined all the little “must-do” tasks to see what could be done more efficiently?

Download Free Guide Now

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