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How To Manage Promised Payments

Promised payments and installment payments are easily managed in Collect! using built-in financial and contact planning functions.

tip.gif Collect!'s Billing Tree Module also uses these functions to implement a fully featured automatic payment handler.

There are basically three types of promise management, each serving a different purpose.

  • Promise Contacts - When payments are irregular, possibly inconsistent and perhaps incomplete, Promise contacts offer the same automatic tracking and calculations as a Payment Plan with added flexibility that is lacking in a Payment Plan.

  • Payment Plans - When payments are expected to be uniform and paid consistently and on time, a Payment Plan is set up on the account. This posts a definite repayment schedule using transactions with no Posted Date. This is useful for credit grantors and for any business that sells services or products with a contractual payment agreement.

  • Post-Dated Payments - Post-dated transactions with no Posted Date may be posted as needed to an account, without using a Payment Plan. This may simply be a single promised payment or multiple payments. Using contact plans, you can perform a customized series of actions to manage special promise agreements, such as automatic monthly debit from a bank account. One advantage of a contact plan approach is that post-dated transactions are created as needed by the plan, rather than generated all at once. This can make a considerable difference when a plan runs for several years.

Each of these methods is described more fully below.

Promise Contacts

Promised payments may be managed using the Promise contact. A no repeat Promise contact may be scheduled for a single promise. The repeating Promise contact is very useful for scheduling payments in a loosely structured " payment plan." At any given time, there is only one Promise contact scheduled for a particular Debtor. This contact revolves until the debtor's Owing reaches zero. Contact plans may be executed for full payment, overpayment, underpayment, and NSF payments. Broken promises may be managed through batch processing.

Please refer to Introduction To Promises.

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Payment Plan

Contractual payments may be managed using a Payment Plan. You choose a number of payments to complete the contract and a payment period, e.g. Monthly. When the plan is set up, transactions with no Posted Date are created for every payment in the entire repayment period. The last payment is adjusted accordingly so that the Debtor's Owing will result in zero. Contact plans may be executed when the plan is set up and when a payment is received to send letters of confirmation and reminder notices.

When you post a payment, you select the appropriate transaction from the list and enter the Posted Date so that Collect! can tally the payment into the daily and monthly totals.

tip.gif If there is any chance that the payments will not be regular or consistent, you are advised to use Promise contacts instead.

Please refer to Payment Plan Topics.

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Post-Dated Payments

A Post-Dated Payment is a Payment Transaction with a Paid Date, a payment amount in To Us, and NO Posted Date.

Contact plans provide a very comprehensive way to track monthly payments using post-dated payments. This is the preferred method for producing an electronic transfer file for direct debit and when setting up post-dated checks.

Whenever payments are posted according to the promised agreement, confirmation of payment and a reminder of the next due date may be scheduled automatically. This is especially useful to fulfill requirements for direct debits and post-dated checks. A new post-dated transaction is scheduled automatically for the next withdrawal.

Please refer to Introduction To Post-Dated Payments.

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Managing Payments With Billing Tree

Collect!'s Billing Tree Module enables you to process credit card and ACH payments electronically, interfacing seamlessly with this online payment processing provider. This is a full-featured solution for managing single and recurring payments made by credit card or by bank draft. External payments posted at the Billing Tree website are also reconciled and posted within Collect!. Recurring scheduled payments are fully managed as well.

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See Also

- Promise Contact Topics
- Payment Plan Topics
- Post-Dated Payment Topics
- Billing Tree Topics

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