BANKING ON JUSTICE: IOLTA PROGRAM
The DC Bar Foundation administers the District’s Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Program, a program created by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals in 1985. Through this program, the Foundation receives the interest from thousands of pooled bank accounts and distributes it within the community for legal aid.
This revenue helps people with low incomes in the District get help with civil legal problems affecting their most basic needs, such as access to food, shelter, jobs, and safety. Only approved financial institutions can offer DC IOLTA accounts.
DC Prime Partner banks have committed to supporting legal services in our community by offering strongly favorable rates. These financial institutions are going above and beyond to be partners in our community. Please see our list of Prime Partners and consider them for all of your banking needs.
Lawyers admitted to practice in the District of Columbia are required to hold IOLTA-eligible funds in an interest-bearing trust account remitting to the DC Bar Foundation, with some limited exceptions. Please see the relevant portions of the DC IOLTA Rules and our Lawyer FAQs for more information. For instructions on how to enroll in the DC IOLTA Program, please visit us here.
To offer IOLTA accounts, a bank must be approved as a depository by the DC Court of Appeals Board on Professional Responsibility. As a part of this process, the DC Bar Foundation must approve the rate a bank intends to offer. Please see the relevant portions of the DC Bar Rules, Bank FAQs, and our Guidelines for Financial Institutions for more information. For instructions on how to become an approved depository, please visit us here.