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Creating invoices

Creating invoices

Creating an invoice is the first step for billing your clients. Invoices indicate when there’s a balance due for a client, outlining the amount they owe for services or products rendered. This guide covers how invoices will be used to track client balances.

Note: For more information about the billing process, see: Using the client Billing Overview page.

In this guide, we'll cover:

Note: Our updated billing experience is being rolled out in groups and won't be enabled in all practices until a later date. If you don't see this in your account and would like this feature enabled in your account, please reach out to our team.


Invoice creation

There are several ways to create invoices, and you have the flexibility to handle these processes automatically or manage them manually as needed.

By default, invoices are set to automatically generate on a daily basis. With this setting, an invoice will be created overnight if a client has been seen for an appointment. As a best practice, we recommend keeping this setting as is so that invoices are generated regularly for your clients.

You also have the option to manually generate invoices or set them to auto-generate on a monthly basis. We advise that these options are only used for practices with complex billing workflows. 

Important: Until an appointment is invoiced, it's considered Uninvoiced. Once an invoice is generated, the Uninvoiced amount transfers to the Client Balance, giving a record of what your client owes.

Managing your invoice creation settings

You can manage your invoice generation settings by going to Settings > Billing and Services. From here you can select the option that's right for your practice:

  • Daily: Automatically create invoices at the end of each day. (Recommended)
  • Monthly: Automatically create invoices on the first day of each month. 
  • Manually: Do not automate invoices. (Only recommended for practices with complex billing workflows)

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Creating an invoice from the Calendar flyout

If you collect payment and record it at the time of an appointment, you can add a payment and generate an invoice at the same time from the Calendar flyout.

To do this:

  • Select the correct appointment in the calendar
  • Collect the Uninvoiced Session amount from the client
  • Click Create Invoice & Add Payment

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This will generate the invoice and prompt you to add the payment. For more information on adding a payment, see: Navigating client payments

If you'd prefer to view and customize the invoice before applying payment, you can click Create Invoice.

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Note: If you manually create invoices for an appointment, the system won't generate another duplicate invoice for that appointment, even with automatic invoicing set up for your practice.

Creating an invoice from a client's Overview page

If you've decided to generate invoices monthly or to manually generate them, you'll want to periodically create an invoice of all uninvoiced appointments.

To do this:

  • Navigate to the client's Overview page
  • Click Uninvoiced

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  • Select the date(s) of service
  • Click Create Invoice

Your invoice will appear with all outstanding appointments listed and you can edit it as needed. Once the client has made the correct payment, the invoice will get marked as Paid

Note: Partially paid invoices won't be marked as Paid


Creating an invoice from a client's Billing page

If you're reviewing a client's Billing page and see that an appointment is missing an invoice, you can create one directly from this page. 

To do this: 

  • Click Manage next to the uninvoiced appointment
  • Select Create invoice or Create invoice and add payment if the client has already paid

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  • If you choose Create invoice, review the invoice and click Save
  • If you choose Create invoice and add payment, you'll be prompted to add the payment

Fee adjustment invoices

If an appointment's fee changes after it's already been invoiced, clicking Uninvoiced will create a fee adjustment invoice. 

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A fee adjustment invoice is a record of a change to an appointment's fee and will balance out the charge. To avoid fee adjustment invoices, we recommend editing the appointment fee before the end of the day if you have invoice automation enabled. 

If you need to change the fee of an appointment with an existing invoice and the client hasn't paid yet, we recommend: 

  • Deleting the invoice
  • Editing the fee
  • Creating a new invoice

For more information, see: Appointment level billing changes.

If the client has already paid the original invoice and the fee is reduced, see: How do I update an appointment’s fee if it’s already paid? 


Sending past due invoices

In your Billing and Services settings, you can indicate when an invoice is considered past due. This will help you stay up-to-date with your billing and identify which invoices need your attention the most.

To set this up:

  • Navigate to Settings > Billing and Services
  • Select the number of days that would trigger a past-due designation on an invoice from the dropdown 
  • Check the Email clients when an invoice is past due box if you want to send automated emails to your clients that have past due invoices
    • Clients will receive weekly past due email notifications for 4 weeks after the invoice has been designated as past due

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Note: If you'd like to disable the email notification feature, you can uncheck Email clients when an invoice is past due. There isn't a way to prevent these invoices after they've been issued for a certain number of days as past due.

Once 30 days have passed since an invoice was created, if it remains unpaid, the status will change to Past Due.

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You can preview and customize the past due email template by navigating to Settings > Client Portal > Emails

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Once a payment is applied to a past due invoice, it'll update to the Paid status. See Navigating client payments to learn how to add a client payment. 


Adding products to an invoice

Products are non-appointment items you can add to invoices to charge a client. It can include anything from books, workshops, service charges, an initial balance, etc.

Note: To learn more about setting up your product list, see: Adding a product.

You can add a product as a line item to any unpaid invoice. The product fee will reflect on the client’s overall balance. 

How to add a product to an invoice

  • Open the unpaid invoice
  • Click More > Edit

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Note: If the invoice is already marked as paid, you can delete it and recreate a new one. New invoices can be edited before they're saved. 

  • Click + Add Line Item

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  • Click + Add for the product you want to add. You can add as many as you need. Click the X when you’re done

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  • After the product has been added to the invoice, you can make edits to the amount or description as needed

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  • Click Save

How to create an invoice for Products only

There may be times where you need to create invoices for non-appointment fees only. These billable, non-appointment items are called Products in SimplePractice. In these cases, you can create stand-alone invoices to charge your client for Products only.

Note: To learn more about how to add billable Products to your account, see: Adding a product.

  • Navigate to the client's Billing page
  • Click New > Invoice
  • Click Create Blank Invoice

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Note: You'll only see 0 uninvoiced appointments if all existing appointments in the time frame are already invoiced. If all existing appointments aren't already invoiced, create invoices for those appointments first. 

  • Click Add Line Item
  • Click + Add for each Product you want to add to the invoice. Click the X when you're done
  • After the Product has been added to the invoice, you can make edits to the amount or description as needed
  • Click Save

Adding appointment descriptions to invoices

You have multiple options for how services display on invoices. To choose how you'd like to display this information by default:

  • Navigate to Settings > Billing and Services
  • Under Invoice Settings select either
    • Use Professional Services
    • Use Appointment Service and Description

By default, invoices will display all appointment types as Professional Services when the invoice is generated.

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This general description is used on the invoice billing document to help protect client privacy since more descriptive appointment information is generally required only on superbills.

You can also customize this description to be anything you wish. To do this:

  • If you haven't saved the invoice, click into the text field and edit as needed
  • If you have saved the invoice, click More > Edit and then edit the text field as needed

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If you'd prefer to have the full service code description display on the invoice, go to Settings > Billing & Services and select Use Appointment Service and Description under Invoice Settings

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Note: You can always edit invoices individually after you generate them.


Deleting invoices

Invoices can be deleted at any time.

To do this:

  • Click the invoice to view it
  • Click More > Delete

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  • Click Delete Invoice

Important: Deleted invoices and other deleted documents can't be retrieved. Make sure to download the document as a PDF before deleting to keep it for your records. 


FAQs


Do I need to use invoices?

In order to use the billing features of SimplePractice, you'll need to use invoices. Invoices are required in order to indicate that you've billed a client, but you don't have to send these invoices to clients. They can remain in SimplePractice to indicate you've billed the client. If invoices aren't created for a session, the session fee won't be part of the client's balance and payments will result in a credit balance. Invoices can't be turned off.


Can I add sales tax or credit card processing fees to invoices?

Many of our customers add a sales tax to their invoices. To do this, you can create a Sales Tax "Product" which can be added to any invoice.

  • First, go to Settings > Billing and Services > Products and add a new product for Sales Tax with a description that works for you
  • Here you can enter the price as $0
    • This can later be adjusted directly on the individual invoice based on the session's fee

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  • Return to your client's Billing page and create an invoice
  • Click Edit to customize the invoice and the Add Line Item button to enter your sales tax line item  
  • Click +Add to include the Sales Tax Product you created

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  • Click to return to the invoice
  • Calculate and enter the appropriate amount of the sales tax based on the fee in the Amount filed and click Save at the top of the invoice  
  • After you hit Save, the Total listed at the bottom of the invoice will adjust based on what you've entered as the sales tax 

Can I add a credit card processing fee to an invoice?

Some customers opt to pass along the credit card processing fees to their clients. In some states this practice is illegal, so verify the laws that govern card acceptance in your state before you add fees to your invoices.

Creating a credit card processing fee as a product

To add the processing fee to a client invoice:

  • Navigate to Settings > Billing and Services > Products
  • Enter a name for the fee such as Credit Card Processing Fee or Credit Card Surcharge
  • Enter a fixed price. (You can easily change the price on the invoice when adding the fee to the invoice - we'll get to that later in the steps. There isn't a way to add a percentage.)

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  • Return to the client's Billing page and open the client's invoice (or create a new invoice for the session if one isn't already made).
  • Click Edit in the upper right corner of the screen. (If you don't see an edit button, check if the invoice has a green Paid stamp displaying on it. If it does, you'll need to delete the invoice and create a new invoice.)
  • Click Add Line Item just below the session fee on the invoice. A menu will pop up that allows you to select the product to add to the invoice.
  • Select the product to add to the invoice

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  • Click Add
  • Click Save 

Is it legal?

Customers often ask us for advice about the legality of this practice (i.e., passing credit card fees on to clients).  

The best way to get an answer to this question is to ask a lawyer. However, we can provide some information that is widely available on this issue. 

As of April 2018, surcharges are illegal across the board in these states:

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Kansas
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • New York
  • Oklahoma

The legality of these states’ bans could change at any time, so it's up to providers to be aware of their state laws before applying these fees or surcharges to client invoices.

Note: This is general information only and we don't intend for you to use any of it as legal advice or guidance. Nor do we intend for you to use it in lieu of seeking appropriate legal counsel.


Can I update the address that displays on client invoices?

You can choose which address you’d like to display on your client invoices. To do this:

  • Navigate to Settings > My Practice > Locations
  • Scroll down to Billing Addresses
  • Click Edit next to Client Billing

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  • Use the dropdown menu to choose which address you’d like to display on your insurance claims and client facing billing documents such as client invoices, statements, and superbills
    • You can choose an address that’s already listed in your account or add a new one
  • Click Save

How do I update an appointment's fee if it's already paid?

There are times when a client's responsibility is reduced after the appointment has already been invoiced and paid. Oftentimes, an electronic payment report (ERA) will update a client's responsibility. Deleting a paid invoice will result in an unallocated client payment. To avoid this, we recommend keeping the fee adjustment invoice as a record of the billing adjustment that took place.

If an appointment's fee has been reduced after being invoiced and paid, follow these steps to record the billing adjustment:  

  • Refund the payment to the original invoice, which will mark the invoice as unpaid
  • Adjust the client responsibility to the reduced amount
  • Create a fee adjustment invoice
    • The amount of the fee adjustment invoice will be the difference between what was paid and the reduced amount

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  • Return to the original invoice and click Add Payment
  • Apply the available credit
  • Charge the client the remaining balance

The original invoice will be paid in full and will reflect the credit that was applied. 

If an appointment's fee has been increased after being invoiced and paid, follow these steps to record the billing adjustment:

  • Adjust the client responsibility to the increased amount
  • Create a fee adjustment invoice for the remaining amount

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  • Open the new invoice and click Add Payment

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The fee adjustment invoice will reflect that the increased amount has been paid. 

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