Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Puerto Rico considers implementing IOLTA type rules; comments requested

As you probably know, IOLTA (short for "interest on lawyer trust accounts") programs are a mechanism for funding legal services for the poor. They require attorneys to place certain funds in interest generating accounts and banks to provide the interest to an agency that uses it to provide funds for legal services. All states and the District of Columbia have IOLTA programs. (About a decade ago, the program in DC became mandatory; see here).

Now comes news that the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico is considering adopting a similar program.  The text of it (in Spanish) is available here.  Comments should be sent to SecretariadoConferenciaJudicialyNotarial@ramajudicial.pr

If you want to learn more about the basics of IOLTA programs, you can listen to this short podcast.  Also, here is a short post on common mistakes lawyers make when handling an IOLTA account. If you want to read about the typical debate as to whether IOLTA programs are unconstitutional, you can take a look at this article, although that is only one of many, many others on the subject.

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