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New in LeanLaw: September 2022
New in LeanLaw: September 2022

Release notes: invoice email delivery, public API release, bug fixes, and more!

Doug Schmierer avatar
Written by Doug Schmierer
Updated over a week ago

What’s new in LeanLaw this month?

Email improvements

We've been working on enhancing our Invoice Email Delivery settings. Here are some of this month's additions:

  • You can now edit the color of the Pay and Pay Balance buttons that appear in emails your firm sends. Click and drag on the color picker, or type in a known RGB or hex code to find a color. Match it to your firm logo for stronger branding!

  • You can now add shortcuts to the email's Introduction Paragraph. Typing {date_due}, for example, will add the invoice's due date to the email body. Edit your Introduction Paragraph to see all shortcuts currently available.

  • You can now add an Account Summary to your emails. Account Summaries will show key billing information such as the invoice total and, when applicable: any partial payments made, any outstanding A/R, trust retainer information, and the evergreen minimum for the trust retainer.

Move Matter enhancement

While you're viewing an invoice in a draft state, you may have noticed a button that says "Move Matter," and has the intended function of moving a time entry to a different matter. Before, this button would only allow you to do so while also moving time entries back to Ready to Bill. Now, when you pick a client and matter to which to move a line item, you can choose to move the time entry into another draft invoice (as long as the selected matter has an invoice in Drafts).

Note: because the time entry will change its hourly rate to match the user's default rate in the new matter, this feature only works for matters where the user is already involved.

Trust memos appear on invoices $0 with a balance

Before, if the trust account associated with an invoice had a balance of $0, no trust information would be added to the invoice memo. By popular request, we've changed this so that trust retainer information will now appear in invoice memos even if the trust account has been depleted or newly opened at $0.

Public API released to all

You may have read about our Public API feature listed in the "What's next?" category of our release notes. It's been in closed beta for a long time, but it's now released to all firms.

Public API allows a firm access to a limited number of API calls. If your firm has a developer on staff, they can use these API calls to query for your firm's time entries, clients, and matters, or even create time entries. The Public API feature allows developers to integrate LeanLaw with other applications that support API.

What's next?

Custom Fields in invoice memos

Custom Fields is an expansion of the QuickBooks feature by the same name. With this feature, rather than just being limited to 3 fields, you can create as many as you like by inserting them into your invoice memo.

Here's how it works: a field name can be in your Firm Settings, such as "Patent Number," with that field set to be either matter-specific or client-specific. Then, you can go into a client or matter's Info tab and attach a value to that field, such as "D000123." Then, whenever you create an invoice for that client or matter, the memo field will automatically include "Patent Number D000123." Any fields you leave blank will be considered not relevant to the invoice and left off entirely.

This feature is especially strong if you find yourself constantly applying the same information onto every invoice you send a client. Contact our team today if you'd like to try this beta feature!

Syncing distributions to QuickBooks as checks for attorneys

Our Distribution page has always been a useful tool for cutting checks, but we've taken it a step further with full redesign, including a "Sync to QuickBooks" button on the distribution page. When pressed, this button will automatically create either a check or a bill (determined by a setting in your Firm Settings) in QuickBooks for each user in your firm to the amount of their distribution. This payroll tool is available in beta now.

Update history

As always, we’ve also been hard at work to squash bugs and improve the user experience. Here are the patch notes for our development cycles.

September 27, 2022

  • Increased image size limitation for email logo so that firm's logos encounter less degradation when emailed.

  • Added an option to disable Gravity Legal links on invoice memos, located in Invoice Presentation settings.

  • Fixed an issue where CC on Responsible wasn't adding the responsible user's email address to their invoices.

  • Fixed an issue where trust retainer information wouldn't be added to invoices if the user created the invoice through step-by-step invoicing.

  • Fixed an issue where email addresses duplicated across the To, CC, and BCC fields would cause an email to fail to send. Now, an email address entered multiple times will only send to its highest priority field, prioritizing To first, then CC, and lastly BCC.

September 26, 2022

  • Trust retainer information will now appear on invoices even if the trust balance is $0.

  • Made some improvements to invoice editing logic that will reduce the processing time and failure rate of extremely large (1000+ line item) invoices.

September 22, 2022

  • Added support for line breaks in Billing Notes (Matter Info tab).

September 20, 2022

  • Fixed an issue that could prevent firms from adding credits to their invoices if they have no custom invoice settings enabled.

  • Fixed an issue where most billed services weren't contributing to the Billed Services column in WIP, Billed, Collected reports.

  • Fixed an issue where the New Entry form, which automatically opens after creating a time entry on the Time Entries page, would ask if you wanted to discard your changes even if you hadn't changed any information on the form.

September 19, 2022

  • Fixed an issue where time period filters weren't adjusting to time zones, causing the daily preview bars to appear incorrect on the Calendar page, payments made on the first of a month to contribute to reports for the month before and after, and other filtering issues.

  • Fixed an issue on the Invoice Email Delivery settings page where users were unable to edit the Introduction Paragraph because of an "invalid email" error, even when a valid email had been provided.

  • Fixed an issue in the Billable by Client and Matter report, on the Overview level of the report, where there were two "Hours" columns with different values. Originally, one of the Hours included nonbillable and write-down hours. Now, both Hours only list billable hours.

September 16, 2022

  • Added reordering logic to draft invoices: Time entries will now be automatically reordered to their proper place on the invoice when their date is changed; new time entries created in the draft will similarly be placed according to their dates.

  • Removed the protections from Duplicate Time Entry that prevented users from duplicating time entries to the same day. We initially added these protections to prevent accidental duplications, but have received several requests for their removal.

  • Revised the Collected by Originating report to focus more on the origination amounts and percentages going towards users, and grouping matters by their originator.

  • Added the ability to add shortcuts into your email body paragraph, including values like the date and amount due on the attached invoice.

  • Fixed a tooltip on the Ready to Bill report that suggested the report can show Billed data.

  • Fixed an issue where Require Expense Codes would continue requiring expense codes on a matter even if you'd disabled LEDES for that matter.

September 13, 2022

  • Added functionality to the Change Matter (name subject to change) feature. Now, in addition to moving a time entry to a different matter and sending it back to Ready to Bill, you can move a time entry from one Draft invoice to another Draft invoice.

  • Fixed an issue where multimatter invoices wouldn't appear if you filtered by one of the invoice's matters.

September 10, 2022

  • Added distribution category on user modal (allows setting different accounts for different users on bills created by the “send to quickbooks” distribution feature)

  • Added an option to set bill number on distributions.

  • Changes Reports permissions so that users no longer need the "Reports" permission in order to see access other reports. Now, as long as a role has any reports-related permission, they'll be able to open the reports tab and see only the reports they have permission to.

September 9, 2022

  • Added an Automatically Pay Invoices From Trust checkbox in Trust Accounting Settings. This checkbox will automatically attempt to pay off all invoices from money in the trust account as soon as the invoice is created in QuickBooks.

  • Released the Public API feature to all firms.

  • Added the ability to set step-down origination at a client level. Client step-down settings will be prioritized over firm-wide settings but prioritized after matter level settings.

  • Added the ability to change the color of the Pay and Pay Balance buttons in the Invoice Email Delivery settings page.

  • Fixed an issue where negative expenses would cause revenue allocation values to be incorrect.

Looking for more changes? You can find last month's release notes here.

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