If you are new to Therabill and you are entering your patients, you may want to enter a Balance Forward. In this sense, a balance forward is an amount owed to you by that patient prior to you starting Therabill. This article will cover how to enter that balance forward into Therabill.
IMPORTANT: If you are entering a balance forward that you will want to bill to insurance, then you will need to enter each individual session into Therabill, complete with place codes, CPT codes, and the individual charge amounts for those sessions. The instructions below are only for balance forwards that you are not billing to insurance. That is, this is for balance forwards that are due from the client only.
Case 1: The client owes you money (a positive balance forward)
If your client has a positive balance forward, then you would want to enter this as a charge using the add session form.
Create a Balance Forward Session Class
The first thing you will want to do is create a session class for Balance Forward. Session classes are a way for you to categorize sessions using your own classification scheme. For video instructions on how to create and use session classes, please see the video Session and Payment Classes.
When creating the session class, you will want to indicate that any sessions assigned to this session class are Not Insurance Billable.
Create a Session
Now that you have a balance forward session class, you will now create a session in Therabill for that client. It is wise to make the date of service of the session to be prior to any other session that you will be entering for that client into Therabill. You will put the charge amount of the session as the total amount of the balance forward and change the "Initially Bill To" as "Client". In addition, you may want to enter a Service Code of something like Balance Forward. IMPORTANT: When entering the session, assign it to the balance forward session class that you created. Because you indicated that the balance forward session class was not insurance billable, this session will never go in to the insurance billing area for as long as it is assigned to that balance forward session class.
This balance forward session will now show up on your client statements. The class will be shown on the client statement and the charge amount (balance forward) will be added to the amount due by the patient.
Applying Payment Towards Balance Forward
Because you entered the balance forward as a session, this session will be available for payment entry (on the client payment entry page) for as long as it has a balance due. To apply payments towards the balance forward, simply apply the payment towards that balance forward session on the client payment entry page when entering a client payment.
Case 2: You owe the client money (a negative balance forward, the client has a credit balance.
If the client has a credit balance, then you would want to enter this as a payment. The best way to do this is by entering an unassigned payment for the patient. This will allow you to show that the patient has a negative balance and will allow you to assign payment (from the unassigned payments) to the future charges as they occur. For information on using client payments and unassigned payments, please see: Client Payments and Unassigned Payments in Therabill.