Record and Manage Bill Payments

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After generating bills and client funds requests for your clients, there are multiple ways to accept payments. If you are a Clio Payments customer, you can ask a client to pay directly via credit card, debit card, Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Pay by Bank payment, or use a client's stored payment method to record payment for future bills without having to request payment from the client. You can also manually record bill and client funds request payments if your clients prefer to pay by cash or cheque, or if your clients prefer to pay by credit or debit card but you do not have Clio Payments set up. 

Tip: Use payment plans to automatically deduct bill payments on specified intervals. This ensures that your firm gets paid and offers your clients more time to pay their bills. Learn more about setting up payment plans here.

Understand payment sources when recording bill payments

When recording a bill payment, you can select the source of payment as a direct payment, debit or credit card payment, Pay by Bank payment, or apply clients funds if the client has funds in their client funds account. See below for more information about the common payment types.

Note: If a client’s payment fails, they will be notified by email.
Direct payment
A direct payment is a payment made directly to the firm without using any Clio-integrated payments platform, such as Clio Payments. When you record a transaction as a direct payment, the transaction automatically moves to a paid state. 
Debit or credit card
Once you have requested and stored your client's debit or credit card payment method, you can record a card payment on a bill. A card payment can take 5-7 business days before the payment is fully processed and deposited into your bank account.
Pay by Bank payment
Once you have requested and stored your client's Pay by Bank payment method, you can record a Pay by Bank payment on a bill. A Pay by Bank payment can take 5-7 business days before the payment is fully processed and deposited into your bank account.
Client account
You can apply any client funds at the client or matter-levels for the bill payment. If you submit a client funds request to your client to top-up their client funds, you can only accept payment through direct payment, debit or credit card, or Pay by Bank payment. Learn more about client funds requests here.

 

Record single bill or multi-matter bill payments

You can record payment for a single bill and a multi-matter bill in the same way. A multi-matter bill is single bill that includes activities for multiple matters belonging to one client. You can combine multiple matters for one client onto one bill when generating a new bill using the bulk billing feature (New bills button in the Billing tab).

Note: When payment is applied to a multi-matter bill, the activities on the oldest created matter will be paid off first. If only partial payment is applied, the payment will be applied to the matter that was created first in Clio. Any remaining payment amount will be applied to the remaining matters from oldest to newest.
  1. Go to the main Billing tab or the Bills subtab in a matter or contact.
  2. Click the down arrow next to Send and select Record payment.
  3. Select the payment source, deposit account, the amount being paid. You can also add a description or note. If the client has available client funds, you will see the option to select funds from the client funds account.
  4. Click Record payment.
    • If you are using Clio Payments and selected credit card as the payment source, the Record payment button will be replaced with Billing information, allowing you to enter your client's credit card details. 

 

Record payment for a single client's multiple bills and matters

If one of your client's has multiple generated bills, or if one matter has multiple generated bills, you can record payment on all of the unpaid bills by following the steps below.

Note: You cannot record payment for bills belonging to multiple different clients at the same time.

  1. Go to Billing
  2. Click Record payment
  3. Search for the client. All unpaid bills for that client will appear.
  4. Select the payment source, deposit account, the amount being paid for each bill. You can also add a description or note. If the client has available client funds, you will see the option to select funds from the client funds account.
  5. Click Record payment.
    • If you are using Clio Payments and selected credit card as the payment source, the Record payment button will be replaced with Billing information, allowing you to enter your client's credit card details. 

 

Record bill payments from client funds

If your client has client funds on the client or matter-level, you can record payment for a bill from the client funds. You can record payment and apply client funds at the same time as the bill approval process or after a bill has already been approved.

Note: If the client funds are not sufficient to cover the total bill payment, the bill will remain in the Unpaid state with the remaining balance.
Approve bill and apply client fundsApply client funds to approved bill
  1. Go to Billing or the Bills subtab in a matter or contact.
  2. Select either the Unpaid or Pending approval subtab.
  3. Click the down arrow next to Edit and select Approve & apply client funds.
  4. Select your operating account as the destination account for payment.
  5. Click Approve & apply client funds.

 

Edit recorded bill payments

You can edit a recorded bill payment from within either a contact or matter's Bills subtab or the Transactions subtab. When editing a recorded payment, you can edit all fields other than the write-off or credit note section. If you need to apply a credit note or write-off a bill payment, you will need to delete the payment first. Learn more about credit notes here.

Note: You cannot change the payment amount on a client funds request. If you need to change a client funds payment, you will need to release the funds. Learn more here.

Via Billing/Bills subtab Via Transactions subtab
  1. Go to Billing or click the Bills subtab in a contact or matter.
  2. Optional: Click the Paid quick filter subtab.
  3. Click the bill ID to open the bill. You can also click the down arrow next to Send and select View bill.
  4. Under the Payments subtab, click Edit next to the payment.
  5. Make your changes and click Edit payment.

 

Delete recorded bill payments

You can only delete a recorded payment if it is a direct payment. Credit card payments that have been completed can only be refunded or unlinked. Learn more about refunding payments here.

Important: You cannot delete a client funds request payment. Client funds can only be released. Learn more here.
  1. Go to Billing or click the Bills subtab in a contact or matter.
  2. Optional: Click the Paid quick filter subtab.
  3. Click the bill ID to open the bill. You can also click the down arrow next to Send and select View bill.
  4. Under the Payments subtab, click the down arrow next to Edit and select Delete.
  5. When the warning prompt appears, select Delete.

 

View bill payment history

Once a payment is recorded, you can view which firm user recorded the payment in the bill Timeline, from your Firm Feed, and in the matter's Timeline.

Bill Timeline Firm feed Matter Timeline
  1. Go to Billing or go to the Bills subtab in a contact or matter.
  2. Optional: Select the Paid quick filter subtab to view paid bills only.
  3. Click Filters to narrow your search results.
  4. Click the Bill ID. You can also click the down arrow next to Send and select View bill.
  5. Under Bill Timeline, view the bill creation and payment history.

 

View bill payment statuses

Once a payment has been made, you can view the status of the payment. Paid transactions may show any of the following payment statuses: Authorized, Completed, Failed, Chargeback, Disputed, or Dispute Won. To view the status of a payment:

  1. Go to Online payments.
  2. Select the Transactions subtab.
  3. Optional: Select one of the All, Authorized, Completed, or Failed quick filters or click Filters to narrow your results.
  4. Scroll through the list of transactions to find your payment. See the explanations below to learn more about each status.

 

Authorized
Your credit card/bank account details have been accepted and the payment is currently being processed. Authorized payments can still be voided by clicking Void.
Completed
The payment has been successfully processed and will be deposited into the relevant bank account. The timeframe for when a payment is fully processed and deposited into your bank account depends on your client's payment method and the bank processing the transaction  See the section above on Understand payment sources when recording bill payments for payout timeframes for credit card and eCheck payments. Completed transactions cannot be voided and can only be refunded.
Failed
The payment details were rejected by the other bank or something went wrong with the transaction. 
Chargeback
The disputed payment amount has been withdrawn from your firm's operating account.
Disputed
A dispute/chargeback has been initiated by the cardholder or account holder. 
Dispute Won
Your firm won the dispute and the funds have been successfully reclaimed. Learn more about disputes and chargebacks here

 

Unlink payments from one client to another

If you accidentally linked a payment to the incorrect client or matter, you can unlink the payment and link it to the correct client without having to issue a refund. You can unlink payments for paid bills and simple payments that were processed in one of your bank accounts (payments from the New charge button in the Online payments tab), allowing you more choices with payments and a better client experience.

Note: You cannot unlink payment plan payments or change links for simple client funds payments (payments charged to one of your bank accounts) after partial or full refunds are made.

  1. Go to Online payments.
  2. Optional: Click Filters to narrow your transaction results.
  3. Find the payment and then click Edit.
  4. Under Client, select the new client for the payment.
    • Once the client is selected, you have the option to choose a matter. You cannot, however, link the payment to only a matter.
  5. Optional: Check the box for Apply payment to issued invoice automatically if you want this payment to be applied to approved bills for this client.
  6. Click Update payment.
  7. Click Yes, update payment to confirm and unlink the payment.

 

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