IOLTA: Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts

What is IOLTA?

In the mid eighties, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court created Maine's Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) program and entrusted the Maine Justice Foundation with its operation.

IOLTA is a unique and innovative way to increase access to justice for individuals and families living in poverty and to improve the justice system. Without taxing the public, and at no cost to lawyers or their clients, interest from lawyers’ trust accounts is pooled to provide civil legal aid to the poor and support improvements to the justice system. IOLTA is a critical ongoing source of funding for civil legal aid. Every lawyer admitted to practice in Maine, unless exempted by Rule 6, shall deposit all funds held in trust in this jurisdiction in accordance with Rule 1.15 of the Maine Rules of Professional conduct in accounts clearly identified as IOLTA accounts in eligble institutions.

Here are links to the court rules defining Maine’s IOLTA program: