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Setting up Billing

Learn how to set up billing in Karbon, create billing items, set rates, and manage client invoices for efficient financial management.

Erin Jamison avatar
Written by Erin Jamison
Updated over a week ago

Please note: To access Billing you must not be connected to Quickbooks Time under Settings > Connected Apps.



Karbon Billing allows you to simply invoice your clients for the billable time or fixed fee work you have completed in Karbon.

This feature aims to help firms bill their work and time, providing a more consolidated tech stack and benefiting from higher levels of visibility and efficiency by keeping all client, project, and billing data in one place. Additionally, it offers the ability to bill flexibly, automate and speed up the receiving of payments, and better, more accurate reporting, including WIP and realization.

A payments account can be set up with Karbon Payments allowing your clients to pay these invoices to you via Karbon, streamlining the whole payment collection process.

Video Overview: Setting up Karbon Billing & Payments (1 min)

Enabling Billing

The Billing feature is available to every Admin, follow these steps to turn the feature on:

  • Step 1: Access Your Profile: Go to your profile (your name) from the main menu.

  • Step 2: Navigate to Permissions: Scroll down to the Permissions section.

  • Step 3: Edit Permissions: Click on the edit button.

  • Step 4: Enable Billing: Scroll down to Extras and click on Billing.

  • Step 5: Save Changes: Ensure to click save.

  • Step 6: Verify: A billing section will appear in the main menu.

Please keep in mind each Admin will need to turn this on for themselves to use the feature.

Turn on the ability to send and export invoices

To send and export invoices, you must have the permission turned on as well. Please follow these steps:

  1. Open Main Menu: Access the main menu.

  2. Go to Profile: Click on your profile (your name).

  3. Edit Permissions: Click 'edit' under Permissions.

  4. Enable Invoice Permissions: Scroll down to Billing and turn on 'Send or Export Invoices and Billing Runs'.

  5. Save Changes: Ensure to save your changes.

To ensure you can collect payments from your clients, be sure to add the additional permission ‘Manage Karbon Payments accounts’ and continue here to learn how to set it up.

Configuring your Billing Details

To get started, set up your Payments Account, Chart of Accounts, Tax Rates, Tax Identification Numbers, and Billing Templates. The information you enter in these sections will be applied to the invoices created in Karbon.

To access your account's billing details, navigate to the main menu in Karbon, click on Settings, and then select Billing.

1. Karbon Payments

If you are a Payments Admin, add a Payment Account if you would like to have your clients pay their invoices through Karbon. Karbon partners with Stripe Connect to ensure compliance and security of your client's payments.

Please keep in mind, by adding a payment account, you agree to the transaction fees. You can find an overview of fees on our pricing page.

Set up:

  1. Edit Currency Settings:

    • Click "Edit Settings" to choose and edit the currency.

  2. Add Payment:

    • Click "Add Payment" to start the setup process.

  3. Stripe Onboarding:

    • Complete the Stripe Onboarding form to set up your Payment Account in Karbon.

For more information, please see our article on Karbon Payments.

2. Chart of Accounts

The AR ledger records transactions against a set of different accounts - this includes accounts for recording Expenses, Payments and Sales Tax.

Set up:

  1. Access Billing Settings:

    • Go to Settings in the main menu

    • Select Billing

  2. Create or Update Account Mapping:

    • Inside Billing Settings, create or update the account mapping to align the accounts used in the Karbon AR ledger with the accounts in your firm's General Ledger (GL).

Please keep in mind a Journal cannot be exported from the AR ledger until all of the accounts have been mapped.

If your account names or codes have changed, you can alter the account mapping by editing your Chart of Accounts as needed.

3. Accounting Period

An Accounting Period is effectively a period of time used for reporting. In the context of Karbon Billing, it determines what is included in a journal export. Therefore, to use Billing with the AR ledger, you need to configure an Accounting Period.

Set up

  1. Navigate to your Billing Settings:

    • Go to Settings.

    • Select Billing.

  2. Click Set Accounting Period.

  3. Configure your preferences:

    • Choose your desired frequency.

    • Select the start date for the accounting period.

  4. Save your changes.

You can further update your accounting periods by going into the Finance section under Billing on the Main Menu.

4. Tax Rates

Set up tax rates for your firm that will be used when preparing invoices in Karbon in the near future. To set a tax rate go into your Settings off of the main menu and select Billing. Based on your firm's country set in Account Settings, we have populated some core tax rates.

For the US and Canada, we have set Tax Exempt and No Tax Set core rates and for Australia, UK and New Zealand, GST and VAT rates have been set for you.

If you have clients that have different tax rate requirements, you can select a tax rate for those contacts by going to the Billing section on the Details tab. When invoices are created for that contact, the tax rate will be applied to all invoices by default.

You can set up either single or combined tax rates.

5. Tax Identification Number

It is a requirement in many countries to display tax identification/registration numbers on invoices. Below the tax rate section in your Billing Settings, you can also set up tax identification numbers by clicking.

To set up a Tax Identification Number:

  1. Click 'Add Tax Identification Number'

  2. Enter the Identifier field (name displayed on Invoice )

  3. Enter the Tax Identification Number

  4. Select related Tax Rates

  5. Select if the TIN will appear on the invoice. If 'don't show on invoices' is selected, when associated tax rates are applied, a TIN will not be applied to the invoice.

6. Billing Templates

You can view and customize your Invoice Templates for Ad-hoc Invoices and Recurring Billing Invoices, as well as your Email Template for sending the invoices under Billing Templates.

Ad-hoc Invoice Template

Customizing your Ad-hoc Invoice Template offers several options to tailor your invoices to your needs. You can remove the quantity, unit price, amount columns, and the amount breakdown from the invoice. These settings can be applied to the invoice template, affecting all new ad-hoc invoices, and can also be overridden per individual invoice.

If you are not sending a tax invoice, you can change the label below the 'to' field from "Tax Invoice" to "Invoice." This change can be set on the invoice template or adjusted per invoice.

You can select a default payment term (Net 7, 14, 30, or 45) and add payment instructions. These will be the default settings for all new invoices created using the Invoice Template.

Additionally, the template allows you to preview how the invoice will appear to clients, including the logo and branding colors chosen in the Branding section of the Main Menu.

Recurring Invoice Template

Most of the customization options available for your Ad-hoc Invoice Template are also available for the Recurring Invoice Template. Additionally, the Recurring Invoice Template includes a "Payment Due" option of "Due On Receipt," along with the other Net 7, 14, 30, or 45 options.

However, the Recurring Invoice Template does not offer the option to customize between individual or summarized time entries. Instead, it uses the Billing Plan description set in the Recurring Billing Plan details.

Email Template

When customizing your invoice email template, you can change the default wording sent to your clients along with the invoice. Additionally, you can insert placeholders that will automatically populate with specific information about your customers and the invoice. A list of available placeholders is provided below the Email Body field.

Once set, all future invoices sent to your client will use this email template.

Please keep in mind there is a 3,000-character limit.

Setting up Branding and Firm Details

Personalize your communication to ensure it reflects your brand. Navigate to your Settings and select Branding, add a logo and choose a branding color. .

The logo will be applied to all invoices and the branding color will be used on the total and due dollar amounts on the invoice.

Also make sure to update your Firm's address information to ensure that you can send out invoices. Navigate to your Settings and select Account Settings.

Setting up Billing Contact Details

For an invoice to be legal, it must include a billing address and email. In Karbon, you can set these details in the new Billing Section of each contact. Any invoices created will use these details.

To avoid manual work, Karbon pre-selects an address and email when Billing is turned on:

  • Person: First address on the primary contact card.

  • Organization: First address in the details section.

  • Client Group: Firms must select a 'Billing Entity' contact, whose billing details will be used.

If no address or email is available, the fields will be blank with appropriate messaging.

Selecting a Different Address

If the pre-selected address or email is incorrect, a dropdown will show other available options. To use an address or email not listed, update the contact card or section, and it will appear in the Billing Details.

The contact assigned to the work isn't always billed for it. For flexibility, firms can select a 'Bill To → Billing Entity' in the Billing Details section. By default, the Bill To is the contact itself, except for Client Groups.


Private and hidden contacts must bill to themselves and cannot be chosen as the 'Bill To' for others. If a contact's privacy changes to private/hidden, the Bill To will automatically update to itself.

Using Billing

Now that you have Billing set up, please proceed to our Using Billing help article, which covers everything you need to know about raising invoices and billing your clients with Karbon.

Further Reading:

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