Lead: Become an IOLTA Prime Partner

Smiling, White woman, approx. 35 years old
Jada found her freedom

“Jada” was in an abusive relationship with the father of her child. After he was arrested, she came to Golden House in Green Bay. Advocates there helped her find local daycare so she could look for a job. An attorney and other professionals helped her choose a course of action. Jada filed a restraining order, gained custody of her child, and regained control of her finances. Today, she and her child live safely and independenty.

IOLTA's nature creates a unique opportunity for your institution. Banks and credit unions going the extra mile — leading as IOLTA Prime Partners — get real benefits.

Who better than financial institutions to work for stability in our communities?

Who better than the civil legal aid funding channel established by the Wisconsin Supreme Court to steward their contibutions?

As WisTAF's partner, you'll receive more than just gratitude and the knowledge you are strengthening your communities.

Attract high-value customers

Attorneys and judges demonstrate consistent support for civil legal aid by donating time to serve clients and contributing dollars to statewide legal services funds. Many want their bank or credit union to join them, choosing to hold their accounts where IOLTA works harder for "justice for all."

Even outside the legal community, many credit union members and bank customers want their financial institution to serve the community.  

Our promotion of Prime Partners

We promote Prime Partners to law firms and Wisconsin's attorney community, as well as the general public.

  • We promote our Prime Partners through regular advertising in the Wisconsin Lawyer magazine (received by all attorneys in the state). 
  • We include the Prime Partner list in a presentation to all newly licensed lawyers in the state.
  • We look for opportunities to showcase Prime Partners on social media and outreach to traditional media.
  • We provide attorneys and the public with an online map of all Prime Partner branches, to make it easy to find the branch nearest you.
  • We publish a list of Prime Partners in our annual report, distributed to Wisconsin government officials and access to justice partners statewide.
  • We give each Prime Partner a regularly occurring spotlight on our website

Earn Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) credit

Banks that are Prime Partners receive from WisTAF a report showing how they addressed federal Community Reinvestment Act priorities by supporting low-income communities through voluntary, additional support in the IOLTA program. WisTAF reports not only the dollar amount of Prime Partners’ interest contributions, but also the economic impact their contributions created for low-income people in Wisconsin, a much larger amount. 

Research commissioned by WisTAF, The Economic Impact of Civil Legal Aid in Wisconsin, showed that for every $1 invested in civil legal aid in our state, $8.40 was returned to the economy; more than 40 percent of that impact was in the form of direct asset recovery for people of limited incomes.

Let the family grieve

Losing a loved one to COVID is hard enough. But when “James,” who didn’t have health insurance, passed away, his family inherited crushing medical debt racked up during his final hospital care. There are laws to prevent this kind of catastrophe, but the processes are complex. Navigating multiple bureaucracies, ABC for Health helped make sure James’ care was duly paid for. Now his family can focus on moving forward after their loss, without financial debilitation. 

Make a big difference in your community

Don't take our word for it; check out the stories in the blue boxes to learn how clients used programs supported by IOLTA funds to chart a a route forward in life.

How to participate

  1. Pay interest on IOLTA accounts which is more than 50 basis points (0.50%) higher than required under the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s IOLTA interest rate comparability requirement. 
  2. Waive all fees on IOLTA accounts.
  3. Notify assistant executive director, Tehmina Islam, 608-257-6845, that your financial institution wants to be included in the Prime Partner program.

Tools to help you and your colleagues make the decision 

We would be happy to provide PowerPoint slides, or potentially other materials, that would be helpful for your internal discussions. For more information, please contact Tehmina Islam, 608-257-6845. 

Staff listing | service@wistaf.org
811 East Washington Ave., Suite 400
Madison, WI 53703
608.257.6845 or 877.749.5045 (toll-free)

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