PracticePanther's accounting is fully capable of tracking any type of expense as they are incurred. The two main types of expenses a firm can experience are called "Soft Cost" or "Hard Cost" expenses.

Soft cost Expenses:

These include any expense that does not require a check, but you still may wish to be reimbursed for by your client.
Common examples of soft costs include (but are not limited to) court parking, milage, postage, etc.

Hard cost Expenses: 

These include any expense that requires your firm to write a check on behalf of your client.
Common examples of hard costs include (but are not limited to) filing fees, paying a private investigator or paying an insurance adjuster.

To record a soft cost expense in PracticePanther, follow these simple steps:

1) Inside the matter you wish to add the expense, click into the "Expense" tab and click "New Expense".


2) Leave the type as "Soft Cost". Enter in the amount and description for this expense. Note: The description will appear in on the invoice for your client to see.

What happens now?

Soft Cost expenses will be logged within the "Expenses" tab, and appear in the "Billable" bubble if it was a billable expense and await to be invoiced.

To record a hard cost in PracticePanther, follow these simple steps:

1) Inside the matter you wish to add the expense, click into the "Expense" tab and click "New Expense".


2) Change the "Type" field from "Soft Cost" to "Hard Cost". Doing this will prompt "Payment Details" to appear below.

3) Fill out the "Date", "Amount" and "Description" fields as needed.
Note: The description field will appear on the invoice for your client to see.


4) Select your "Payment Method". Selecting "Check" will prompt the "Check Details" to appear below it. Fill out the "Payee" and "Check Number" as needed.
Note: If you plan to write a check for this expense, be sure to select "Yes" for the "To Print?" field.

What happens now?

Any time you save a hard cost expense, two things happen:

1) An expense is created and logged within the "Expenses" tab and the expense amount is added to the "Billable" bubble.


2) A payment is created and logged within the "Payments" tab, titled as an expense. The amount is also deducted from the "Paid" bubble.

Note: If you want to pay a hard cost expense by using the client's available trust directly, follow this guide.

Whats next?

Generate the invoice for this matter when you're ready. Doing this will bring all amounts in "Billable" to the "Due" bubble. 


Once your client pays, the invoice balance will drop, and the amount paid will move from the "Due" bubble to the "Paid" bubble.
Note: This will balance out any pre-existing operating account hard costs, leaving you with only the amount of money your firm has actually made.

PracticePanther can also have checks written out directly from your hard cost expenses.

To print a check for a Hard Cost in PracticePanther, click here, then follow steps 5 and below.


Enjoy!

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