"Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts," or IOLTA, is a program mandated by the Supreme Judicial Court. It requires lawyers and law firms to establish interest-bearing accounts for client deposits which are nominal in amount or large amounts held for a short period of time. This site is designed to provide information about what the committee does, to provide lawyers information for opening an IOLTA account, and provide banks information for setting up, maintaining, and reporting on IOLTA accounts.

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Frequently Asked Questions

FOR ATTORNEYS

Frequently Asked Questions

FOR FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS

WHERE DOES THE MONEY GO?

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Email Scam Targets Mass. Lawyers

Massachusetts lawyers continue to be successfully targeted by email and internet fraud schemes which many times involve IOLTA accounts. Don't fall victim to one of these financial frauds. Read full details and what to do if you think you are a fraud victim here.

Are you Banking with a Leadership Institution ?

Today, more than ever before, where attorneys and law firms place their IOLTA funds can make a tremendous difference in the amount of funding made available through IOLTA. Please visit our Leadership page and determine if you are banking with a Leadership Institution; If not, please consider opening a new IOLTA account with a Leadership Institution today !

New Class Action Rule Change Requires IOLTA Notification

The Supreme Judicial Court has amended the rule governing class action law suits to require plaintiffs to notify the Massachusetts IOLTA Committee before a judgment is entered or a compromise approved regarding the disposition of class action residuals.The April 24th, 2015 amendment to Rule 23 follows a 2008 amendment to the same rule recognizing the IOLTA Committee  and legal services organizations as appropriate beneficiaries of residual funds. Click here to learn more about directing residual funds to sustain legal aid in Massachusetts. Attorneys with questions on residual funds are  encouraged to contact Jayne Tyrrell at the IOLTA Committee.

 

Eligible Institutions

Pursuant to a July 26, 2006 order of the Supreme Judicial Court, financial institutions must be certified by the IOLTA Committee to be eligible to hold IOLTA funds. Additional changes in the operation of IOLTA accounts were adopted in December, 2008. Effective February 1, 2009, all Massachusetts attorneys may only deposit their IOLTA funds in financial institutions that have been certified to meet new requirements.

Please visit our List of Approved IOLTA Depositories to insure your accounts are maintained at an eligible institution.

As of January 1, 2015:

  • The Leadership Bank interest rate is 1.00%
  • The Safe Harbor interest rate is 0.75%
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