Muller Law Firm Highlights the Importance of Paper Trails

BIRMINGHAM, Mich. - Michimich -- How thoroughly do you document transactions with your clients?

Did you know that proper documentation can save you a whole lot of legal trouble?

An old expression, always applicable to billing practices, states, "It isn't done if it isn't in writing." Everything in the billing system must be in writing. This is usually referred to as a paper trail. As a general rule, whoever has the best paper trail wins.

Here's an example: a customer buys $500 of paper plates. The customer received the $500 shipment, but $100 of the product was damaged. Your contract places risk of loss on the customer, so under the terms of sale, it's the customer's responsibility to file a claim with the carrier.

But what if it's determined that the damage was done before the goods left your warehouse and the carrier isn't at fault? Now you owe your customer a $100 credit. The credit memo should be issued immediately, should specifically refer to the soiled plates, and should include the amount, be dated, and be promptly entered into your billing system. Both the $500 invoice and the $100 credit memo will appear on the customer's monthly statement.

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Never include an item on your statement of account that can't be fully documented. Unexplained items on statements are difficult to impossible to enforce and make your billing system appear disorganized. Your disorganization or lack of documentation will become a huge problem should a customer dispute its balance. As time passes, memories fade and you'll have to rely on your paper trail.

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About Muller Firm: Located in Birmingham, Michigan, Muller Firm P.C. is a family practice handling debt collection in Michigan for in-state, out of state, and international judgments against debtors. Their debt collection experts fight for creditor's rights no matter how big or small the amount of debt. Call today for help with your collections!

Mike Muller

Source: Muller, Muller, Richmond Harms, P.C.
Filed Under: Legal

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