Standing Committee on Legal Aid & Indigent DefendantsDivision for Legal Services
Legal Services Now
Joint bulletin produced by the Division for Bar Services and the Division for Legal Services

November 6, 2009 - Issue #71

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Funding News
Arrow Image  Gates Foundation Awards Major Grant to Help Legal Aid Programs in Washington State – The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged $3 million over the next three years to the Legal Aid for Washington Fund (LAW Fund), the private fundraising entity for the more than 20 legal aid programs in Washington State. Washington is in the forefront of the efforts to increase private funding to compensate for the loss of IOLTA funds; the Washington State Bar Association recently made a one-time contribution of $1.5 million. (See the September 2009 issue of Legal Services NOW for more information.) LAW Fund will partner with the Legal Foundation of Washington (the IOLTA program) to distribute the Gates Foundation funds in 2010 through 2012 to provide operating support to Washington’s legal aid programs. For more information, contact , Director, LAW Fund, or call 206/957-6284.
Arrow Image  Pennsylvania Legislature Approves Temporary Filing Fee Increase for Legal Services – In early October, the legislature approved a state budget that includes a temporary filing fee increase for legal services that is intended to help make up for the major reduction in IOLTA funding. The temporary fee, which will sunset in 25 months, will generate about $3 million annually. This is Pennsylvania’s second major funding initiative to help offset the IOLTA loss; in April, the Supreme Court increased the attorney registration fee by $25, which will generate $1.5 million. (See the April 2009 issue of Legal Services NOW for details.) For more information, contact , Executive Director, Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network, or call 717/236-9486.
Arrow Image  Kentucky Supreme Court Adopts IOLTA Revisions to Increase Revenue – As of January 1, 2010, mandatory IOLTA and IOLTA rate comparability will become effective in Kentucky. That state becomes the 41st to require that all practicing lawyers participate in IOLTA, and the 28th to adopt rate comparability. The latter revenue enhancement strategy requires that lawyers place their IOLTA accounts only in a financial institution that pays those accounts the highest interest rate or dividend generally available at the institution to other customers when IOLTA accounts meet the same minimum balance or other qualifications. For more information about these IOLTA revenue enhancement strategies and others, contact , Counsel, ABA Commission on IOLTA, or call 312-988-5771.
Pro Bono News
Arrow Image  Oklahoma Supreme Court Enacts Rules Permitting Temporary Practice by Out-Of-State Attorneys and Law Professors – The Supreme Court of Oklahoma has adopted two rules granting temporary permits to practice law under specific circumstances. The first enables an out-of-state attorney to practice before Oklahoma courts or other tribunals solely for the purpose of participating in a proceeding in which he or she has been employed, including pro bono cases. When representing a pro bono client, the out of state attorney must associate with an Oklahoma attorney, among other requirements. The second rule provides that an Oklahoma law professor admitted to practice law in another state may be granted a Special Temporary Permit to practice law in Oklahoma, without examination, while the person is employed and devotes his or her full time to the teaching of law. The practice of law under the Special Temporary Permit is limited to assisting attorneys licensed in Oklahoma as a consulting or testifying expert, representing clients in a law school clinical program, or providing pro bono services. For more information, contact , Director, ABA Center for Pro Bono, or call 312/988-5770.
Arrow Image  Iowa Supreme Court Asks Attorneys to Provide At Least 50 Hours of Free Legal Service – The Iowa Supreme Court issued a resolution in October asking the state’s attorneys to provide at least 50 hours of free legal assistance to struggling Iowans who cannot afford legal services in the current economic environment. The resolution also encouraged judges to encourage free legal help by attorneys. For more information, contact Steve Davis, Iowa Supreme Court Communications Officer, at 515/725-8058.
Hot On the Web
Computer Image  Law School Public Service Resource Handbook – This publication provides a user-friendly overview and resources for new (and not so new) law school faculty and staff who support pro bono and public interest programs and curricula. It was published by the Consortium for the Advancement of Public Service in Law Schools (CAPSILS), a national working group formed to foster dialogue among the organizations in the law school pro bono and public interest arenas, including the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service and the Center for Pro Bono; the American Association of Law Schools Section on Pro Bono and Public Service Opportunities; Equal Justice Works; and the National Association for Law Placement and its PSLawNet Public Service Career Center. To download a copy of the Handbook, go to http://www.pslawnet.org/capsilsresources. For further information on the publication or CAPSILS, contact , Assistant Staff Counsel, ABA Center for Pro Bono, or call 312/988-5775.
Washington Update

On November 5, 2009, the Senate passed the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies appropriations bill, which included a $10 million increase for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), providing $400 million for FY 2010. The bill also lifted the restriction on the use of non-LSC funds. In June, the House of Representatives passed its version of the bill, which provided $440 million for LSC in FY 2010 and lifted the restriction on receipt of statutorily-authorized attorneys’ fees. The two chambers will meet in conference to resolve differences in their versions of the bill before sending a final measure to the White House for the president’s signature. In the meantime, LSC will operate at its FY 2009 funding level of $390 million through Dec. 18, based upon the continuing appropriations resolution passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama on Oct. 30.

For more information, contact , Director, Grassroots Operations/Legislative Counsel, or call 202/662-1764.

For more information about specific items, contact the contact person listed for that item. To contribute items to future issues of LEGAL SERVICES NOW, or for general information about this bulletin, contact , call 312-988-5771, or fax 312-988-5483.
Updated: 11/09/2009

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