IOLTA Information

Pennsylvania IOLTA Website

PBA Members Reminded to Contribute to the Pro Bono Initiative Fund, March 2016
In conjunction with the annual attorney registration process, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania offers attorneys the opportunity to make a voluntary contribution to its Pro Bono Initiative Fund. The fund supports special grants to local county bar associations and nonprofits to coordinate and support pro bono efforts at the local level. PBA members can donate to the fund at any time or when completing the annual attorney registration each spring. The Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts Board thanks the PBA members who contributed to the fund in 2014-15.

Application Period Opens for 2016-17 Pro Bono Initiative Grants, Dec. 14, 2015
The application period for pro bono initiative grants from the Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Board opened on Dec. 14, with an application deadline of Jan. 22, 2016. Read the application announcement. For more information, go to the IOLTA Web page, www.paiolta.org/grants, and click on the Pro Bono Initiatives link. For more on the application process, refer to the following materials: How Do I Register?; How Do I Reuse a Previous Application?; How Do I Start a Final Application? Contact David K. Trevaskis, PBA pro bono coordinator, at dkt@pabar.org or 717-571-7414 with questions.

IOLTA Updates Booklet on Handling Property of Clients, Others, October 2015
The Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Board has updated the booklet titled "Fiduciary Requirements for Lawyers in Pennsylvania Handling Property of Clients." The 19-page booklet can be printed as a PDF or accessed directly on the IOLTA website by clicking on the topic of interest. Get the booklet on the IOLTA website. If questions about the material, contact Stephanie S. Libhart, Pennsylvania IOLTA Board executive director at 717-238-2002 or Stephanie.Libhart@pacourts.us.

Final Report of the Pennsylvania IOLTA Board Strategic Planning Initiative, June 16, 2015

IOLTA Website Redesign, June 2014
Stephanie S. Libhart, executive director of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania's Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Board has announced the roll out of IOLTA’s new website at https://www.paiolta.org/. Libhart said she hopes the new website will serve as a better resource to all those working to help the poor access justice in the commonwealth. Under the menu heading Grants you will find information about eligibility, status reports, restrictions, and deadlines for audits and budget revisions. Additionally, there is a Grants category under the FAQS (Frequently Asked Questions) heading at the top of the page. This chart shows IOLTA grants and funding sources.

2013-14 IOLTA Grant Awards for Pro Bono Initiatives

2012-13 IOLTA Grant Awards for Pro Bono Initiatives

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Announces New Cy Pres Rule, May 11, 2012
A new rule has been promulgated by the state Supreme Court providing for 50 percent of class action cy pres funds to go to the IOLTA Board for distribution to its grantees. Read more .

Lieber Named 2012-13 Chair of ABA Commission on IOLTA
PBA Secretary Penina Kessler Lieber has been named chair of the American Bar Association Commission on Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts (IOLTA), appointed by Incoming ABA President Laurel Bellows to a one-year term that begins in August. Lieber is the first Pennsylvanian to serve as chair of the commission. The ABA commission is a nine-member body that supports the operations and expansion of IOLTA programs nationally. Click here for more information on the commission. Lieber is also currently chair of the Pennsylvania IOLTA Board and will complete her second three-year term on the board on Sept. 1, 2012.

2012 Report on Access to Justice Act Funding for Fiscal Years 2004-11
Click on the following links to read this material: transmittal letter, fact sheet on economic impact, full report, appendices.

Pennsylvania IOLTA Board Survey of the Provision of Civil Legal Assistance of IOLTA-Funded Organizations for Calendar Year 2009, or Fiscal Year Ending in 2010, November 2011

Disciplinary Board's Attorney E-Newsletter for May 2011 Promotes IOLTA Online Donation Option
The May 2011 newsletter from the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania features a guest editorial from Stephanie S. Libhart, assistant director of the Pennsylvania IOLTA Board, on making an IOLTA contribution to support legal aid or pro bono efforts. Click here for the newsletter or go to www.paiolta.org/donate/ for information and a link to the online donation form.

2011-12 IOLTA Grant Awards for Pro Bono Initiatives

2010-11 Grant Applications and Awards

Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyer Trust Account Board Grants for Pro Bono Organizations, July 2003 through June 2010

IOLTA Lists Platinum Leader Banks
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania requires attorneys to place Interest on Lawyers Trust Account (IOLTA) funds at banks that pay interest rates comparable to rates paid on other similarly situated accounts. More than 250 banks are eligible to hold IOLTA accounts, but some banks have agreed to pay premium yields on IOLTA accounts. This means more funding for legal aid. As of 2010, the banks paying premium yields on IOLTA accounts, dubbed Platinum Leader Banks, are paying the higher of 75 percent of the Federal Funds Target Rate or 1 percent. The Pennsylvania IOLTA Board thanks all eligible banks, especially the Platinum Leader Banks who are surpassing eligibility requirements. Click here for the current list of IOLTA Platinum Leader Banks, and click here for more on Pennsylvania IOLTA.

IOLTA Board Changes, October 2009

IOLTA-Funded Law School Clinics 2009-2010

2009 AJA Five-Year Report for Fiscal Years 2004-08 Shows Benefits of Funding
IOLTA, PLAN and the PBA Pro Bono Office are pleased to announce the publication of the Access to Justice Act Five-Year Report. The study results show the benefit of Access to Justice Act funding in increasing civil legal aid across the commonwealth. Click on the following links to read this material: summary, full report, appendix.

IOLTA Fee Raised $25 for Pennsylvania Lawyers to Help in Legal Aid Efforts
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has announced a $25 increase in attorney registration fees for Pennsylvania lawyers to raise more funds for civil legal services for citizens who cannot afford them. Click here for the news release from the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts. Click here for the PBA news release. And click here for the news release from the IOLTA Board.

2008 Rules Change Affects IOLTA Accounts
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania issued an order on Sept. 4 (posted on Sept. 5, 2008) amending Rule of Professional Conduct (RPC) 1.15 and Rule of Disciplinary Enforcement 221 that fully implements IOLTA interest rate comparability. The amendments are effective upon their being published in The Pennsylvania Bulletin. Effectively, attorneys must hold their trust account funds (IOLTA and non-IOLTA accounts) in eligible financial institutions. To be an eligible financial institution, it must be in compliance with the applicable provisions of RPC 1.15 and the IOLTA regulations; most notably, it must pay interest rates on IOLTA accounts comparable to the highest rate the financial institution pays to its other customers.

This action by the Supreme Court could result in an increase of IOLTA revenues of approximately $2.8 million annually (at today’s interest rates, all other factors remaining unchanged, for example principal balances, etc.).

FDIC coverage expanded to include IOLTA

IOLTA Pro Bono Support Request 2007

PBA IOLTA Grant 2007-08

PBA IOLTA Grant 2006-07

PBA IOLTA 2005-06 GRANT Program Report

ABA Article on IOLTA