Over the past 10 years, the legal industry has seen tremendous electronic billing (e-billing) growth. eBillingHub, a SaaS solution that simplifies the e-billing process by acting as a central portal that integrates with a law firm’s time and billing software and multiple legal spend management vendors, has been helping law firms stay ahead of this trend since 2004. The centralized and comprehensive approach allows firms to prepare, validate, submit, and track all of their e-bills. Because eBillingHub occupies this very central position in the e-bill flow of its users, it provides a window into e-billing trends, common issues, and hot spots that can equip law firms with helpful information when tackling e-billing.

Incorrect formatting is one of the biggest reasons that invoices are rejected, but also one of the easiest to fix with the proper knowledge and training. Of the invoices that flowed through eBillingHub last year, between 15 and 33 percent in any given month were edited in eBillingHub itself due to billing guideline violations caught by the system. Occasionally, the editing is for valid reasons (split invoices, extended filed corrections, etc.). But the majority of violations were due to improper details included in the invoice when the lawyer entered time or when the matter was configured in the time and billing systems. If billers could receive conforming invoices the first time around, much time and effort would be saved.

For example, data from eBillingHub shows the advantages of the well-chosen word and the problems that can ensue if the wrong word is employed. Certain expense codes and terms are almost guaranteed to get the nod every time, and others are almost guaranteed to get your invoice kicked back to you, as shown in the list below.

Top most validated expense codes:
• E101 – Copying Rate
• E104 – Fax Charges
• E106 – Online Research
• E105 – Phone Charges
• E103 – Word Processing
• BlockBilling (client’s system looking for semi-colons)
• E108 – Postage Charges
• E109 – Local Travel Expenses
• E107 – Delivery Services Charges
• E124 – Other
• Incorrect Invoice Date
• E110 – Out of Town Travel
• E111 – Meals

Top rejection trigger words and phrases:
• Prepare
• Review
• Work on file
• Research
• Scan
• &
• Miscellaneous
• Trial preparation
• Work on discovery

To learn more about e-billing trends and for recommendations on improving e-billing at your firm, read the full white paper, click here. And if you will be at Elite’s Vantage 2014 Worldwide Conference in New York City next week, make sure to stop by one of the eBillingHub sessions, such as eBillingHub Intelligence – Are You Leaving Money on the Table? (Weds., June 25 at 4 p.m.), Discover How eBillingHub Can Streamline the Billing Process Through a Discussion of Industry Trends and Solutions (Weds., June 25 at 8 a.m.), or eBillingHub Round Table User Discussion (Weds., June 25 at 10:30 a.m.).