Massachusetts Bar Foundation awards $2.6 million in grants for legal aid programs

Thursday, Sep. 8, 2016
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The Massachusetts Bar Foundation (MBF) recently awarded more than $2.6 million to 92 programs conducted by 60 nonprofit organizations through its annual IOLTA grants program. For the first time since the recession, the MBF was able to award a significantly higher amount of funding to its grantees.

"Thanks to funding the MBF received from a nationwide settlement with Bank of America, we were able to increase funding for grants by almost $700,000 over last year," said MBF President Janet F. Aserkoff of Boston's Rappaport Aserkoff & Gelles. "MBF grantees are working every day to meet an enormous demand for civil legal assistance. We are proud to be able to support these critically needed programs throughout the state."

MBF IOLTA grants support projects that either offer civil legal services to people who could not afford them, or improve the administration of justice in the commonwealth. Grants providing direct legal services include support to domestic violence programs, special education advocacy, humanitarian immigration assistance, and homelessness prevention. Grants to improve the administration of justice include efforts such as court-connected mediation and lawyer of the day programs.

The Massachusetts Bar Foundation is one of three charitable entities in Massachusetts that distributes funds from the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court's Interest on Lawyers' Trust Accounts Program. Funds from the Bank of America settlement were distributed to IOLTA programs all over the United States.

Additional information about the Massachusetts Bar Foundation and its IOLTA Grants Program, as well as a complete listing of the 2016/2017 IOLTA grant recipients is available at