Kansas Organizations Encouraged to Apply for a KBF IOLTA Grant
Friday, July 22, 2016
Posted by: Meg Wickham
Kansas organizations encouraged to apply for a KBF IOLTA grant
The Kansas Bar Foundation (KBF) is now accepting grant proposals under its IOLTA (Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts) program. The deadline to submit a proposal is August 29. The grant application packet and additional information can be found at http://www.ksbar.org/grant_process.
The Kansas IOLTA program generates interest each year that can be distributed to organizations that support law-related charitable public service projects and programs for low-income Kansans. The IOLTA program collects the interest from lawyers’ commingled client trust accounts which, prior to the creation of the Kansas IOLTA program in 1984, were held in non-interest bearing accounts. The client funds deposited in these accounts are either so small or will be held for such a short amount of time that any interest generated would be less than the expenses to set up a separate account or to separate out, keep appropriate tax records, and dispense interest to each client. However, when a number of these small or short term funds are pooled together, they can produce significant amounts of revenue for law‑related charitable public service projects.
“The IOLTA grant program has generated funding for many grants since it began, helping many nonprofit organizations provide their respective constituencies with legal services and law related education. Although it is not mandatory for an attorney to make his or her trust account one that bears interest, many do so because it is an easy way to give back to the community, and it’s just the right thing to do,” explained Susan Saidian, Chair of the Kansas Bar Foundation IOLTA Committee.
The KBF works with approximately 150 Kansas banks to provide IOLTA accounts. This partnership has resulted in over $4 million for grants for Kansas organizations since its inception 32 years ago.
“With the help of the Kansas Bankers Association, 3489 attorneys and Kansas banks have been able to participate, allowing IOLTA accounts to generate $96,285 in funds last year. In 2016, ten organizations received IOLTA funding for programs that provided free legal services or law related services and education,” Saidian said. “I encourage organizations serving populations with a need for legal or law related services to apply for the grant. “
To learn more about how the KBF and the Kansas Bankers Association work together visit: