Find Nonprofit and Small Business Grants

Advance Search

Only Available for Paid Subscribers
Clear Filters
Search Filters

FY 2020 and 2021 IOLA Grant

Grants to New York Nonprofits for High-Quality
Free Legal Services for Eligible Clients

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

Add to My Calendar 

Interest on Lawyer Account (IOLA) Fund of the State of New York

Deadline Date:

09/28/18 12:00 PM


Request a Grant Writer

Grants to New York nonprofits to provide free high-quality legal services to eligible clients. Funding is intended for individual case services, pro bono services, community legal education, pro se assistance, referrals, online outreach, and group services.

In furtherance of its mission, and in recognition that no single program can satisfy the documented unmet need for civil legal services, IOLA supports a variety of programs to ensure the delivery of a full range of civil legal services to low income New Yorkers through a comprehensive, well-coordinated statewide system. Such programs include, but are not limited to: staff attorney programs, pro bono programs, specialized legal services programs, multi-service programs, alternative dispute resolution programs and support and technical assistance programs for the legal services delivery system.

To accomplish its mission, the IOLA Fund administers two grant programs:

1. Civil Legal Services (CLS) Grant Program
Awards are made to qualified organizations that provide civil legal services in multiple substantive areas free of charge to low-income persons in a particular geographic service area. The most common categories of cases handled by CLS programs are family, housing, income maintenance, consumer, health and employment. CLS grant awards are for general operating support.

By statute, the Fund allocates no less than 75% of its total annual funding to the CLS grant program and bases those awards on the poverty population according to the latest available figures from the U.S. Census Bureau.

2. Administration of Justice (AOJ) Grant Program
Awards are made to providers of legal services to underserved groups and other groups with special needs. In addition to legal services, the AOJ awards support training, program innovations, alternative dispute resolution programs, volunteer lawyer programs and technology improvements to enhance service delivery.

The IOLA Fund generally gives priority to programs that already receive IOLA grant funds. However, the Trustees encourage applications from other programs engaged in the provision of civil legal services if the need, client population, or geographic area that it serves is not addressed by existing programs. The Trustees also encourage applications from innovative programs that help expand access to equal justice for poor persons.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 170077

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Term of Contract:

Grants will be awarded for the twenty-four month period beginning April 1, 2019 and ending March 31, 2021.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Organizations qualified to receive IOLA grants must meet all of the following:
- Be nonprofit entities, tax-exempt under section 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code;
- Operate within New York State;
- Have an audit mechanism that provides accountability for IOLA funds;
- Agree to satisfy, on a timely basis, all of IOLA’s reporting requirements, including the submission of certified financial statements; and
- Provide legal services as a CLS or AOJ provider.

- Civil Legal Services (CLS) – Provide direct civil legal services in multiple substantive areas without charge to low income persons within particular geographical areas in New York State. By statute, CLS awards are based on the poverty population in New York State according to the “latest available figures” from the US Census Bureau. Applicants should refer to “Poverty Population and IOLA Unit Map” included with this application and posted on the Fund’s website.
- Multi-Unit CLS – If an applicant, based upon its review of the Trustees regulations, thinks it may qualify as a CLS provider and if the applicant provides significant services in more than one of IOLA’s seven geographical units, the applicant should indicate in Section C.6. of its application the approximate percentages of expenditures and services provided in each unit in the prior fiscal year as well as the approximate percentages of expenditures and services estimated to be provided in the next fiscal year.
- Administration of Justice (AOJ) – Provides services that seek to:
(a) enhance civil legal services to low income persons through innovative and cost-effective means;
(b) provide direct civil legal services either to groups of clients currently underserved by legal services (such as the elderly or disabled), or in an area of representation (whether substantive or geographical) that cannot be or is not effectively served by individual qualified legal services providers;
(c) provide legal, management or operational training, or legal, management, support service, or technical assistance, or direct legal assistance, informational advocacy or litigation support to qualified legal services providers; or
(d) otherwise promote the improvement of the administration of justice.

IOLA funds may not be used for any of the following purposes:
(1) Legal assistance with respect to any criminal proceeding or any action in the nature of habeas corpus collaterally attacking a criminal conviction
(2) Political purposes
(3) Endowment campaign support

Pre-Application Information:

Application deadline: 12:00 PM, Friday, September 28, 2018.

Any and all questions regarding the application process must be submitted via email and be received by the Fund on or before 4:00 PM, Friday, September 14, 2018. Questions will not be accepted orally and any question received after the deadline may not be answered. The IOLA Fund will post a comprehensive list of all questions and answers on its website on a rolling basis, to be completed by Friday, September 21, 2018.

Applicants are strongly urged to submit applications at least 48 hours in advance of the deadline to allow for uploading documents to the Grants Gateway.

IOLA will accept only one application from each organization.

Applicants must pre-register prior to submitting an application. Registration information can be found here:

Grantee FAQ:

View this opportunity on the Grants Gateway site:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Email questions to

11 East 44th Street
Suit 1406
New York, NY 10017-0055

Tel.: (646) 865-1541 / (800) 222-IOLA
Fax: (646) 865-1545

Funding or Pin Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: New York City;   New York