Setting up Expenses Sync

Connecting LeanLaw to your QuickBooks accounts and product/service settings

Fred Willerup avatar
Written by Fred Willerup
Updated over a week ago

This shows how to set up LeanLaw to sync expenses and bills from QuickBooks. You might need to involve your accountant in this. It affects how expenses are accounted for in your books. 

LeanLaw deals with two types of expenses: Created in QuickBooks (also called "hard" expenses) and Created in LeanLaw ("soft" expenses). The first type is an actual expense that you paid or will pay to a vendor. The second type doesn't involve a payment from you. Both end up on your client invoices.

The most important thing to decide is this: Do you want hard expenses and soft expenses to go into different accounts? We recommend yes. 

To set things up, go to Settings > QuickBooks, then click on "Edit Expense Settings"

This will first show a screen of your current settings:

In this example, we have already set up an account and product/service for expenses created in LeanLaw. Accounts and Product/Service go hand in hand. The account is part of the "Chart of Account" in QuickBooks. The Product/Service is used for invoice line items and is tied to the account.

To change the setting, in this case to set up syncing from QuickBooks, we click "Change Settings" which launches into a little expense setting wizard starting with this screen:

Click "Enable QuickBooks Sync", then click Next:

Here we set up the account to sync with from QuickBooks. You can pick an existing account in the drop down. The account is typically called "Prepaid Expenses" or "Reimbursable Expenses" or in some cases "Advanced Client Cost". You can also click the create checkbox to have LeanLaw setup the account for you.

Next, we need to pick or create a Product/Service for the account. In this example, we are creating one. This will be used for expense line items on invoices. 

If you picked an existing account in Step 2, we get the option to only sync in expenses from a given date. If you have lots of previous expenses that are already billed, make sure you pick a date that include expenses that are still unbilled but not a bunch of billed ones that you would have to clean up in LeanLaw later.

Now you get to pick whether the "Created in LeanLaw" expenses should go to a different account (recommended) or go to the same account as the expenses created in QuickBooks. If you pick "Different" you will get an option to pick the account and product/service for the "Created in LeanLaw expenses. If you click "Same", we are done.

You have the option to add the vendor name to the description for expenses. When this box is checked, the vendor (or payee name) will be prepended to the description.

Once you save, you can now see your expense setup -- the account and product/service settings for the two types of expenses. Click Done.

Next time you go to the expense tab in the product, the expenses sync'd in from the "Prepaid Expenses" account will appear, ready to be billed on to clients.

P.S.: Through our integration with QBO you're able to upload receipts, and then include them on your LeanLaw invoices. Learn how to set that up here.

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