News Release

 
April 15, 2019

MidSouth Bank Joins Prime Partner Program
Program Boosts Funding for Legal Aid in Texas


AUSTIN, TEXAS — As part of its longstanding commitment to address the needs of disadvantaged members of the communities it serves, MidSouth Bank has partnered with the Texas Access to Justice Foundation (TAJF). As a member of TAJF’s Prime Partner Bank program, MidSouth Bank is doing its part to ensure adequate funding is available for low-income Texans’ civil legal matters by voluntarily paying higher interest rates for Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA).

All attorneys who handle client funds are required to keep those funds in IOLTA accounts until they can be made available to a client. TAJF receives funding from the interest generated by these accounts and uses the money to distribute grants to legal aid providers throughout the state. This funding provides legal assistance to more than 150,000 Texas families each year.

“Many Texans face serious legal issues, such as escaping situations of domestic violence or avoiding foreclosure, and simply do not have the resources to hire an attorney,” said Richard L. Tate, chair of the board of directors for the Texas Access to Justice Foundation. “By paying higher interest rates on IOLTA accounts, MidSouth Bank is helping ensure that low-income Texans have access to life-saving civil legal services.”

Due to low interest rates, the TAJF has seen a 53 percent decline in IOLTA revenue since 2007. As a result, nearly $152 million in funding for legal services for disadvantaged Texans has been lost. Prime Partner banks pay 75 percent of the Federal Funds target rate interest on IOLTA accounts, which is above and beyond the eligibility requirements for banks participating in the IOLTA program.

“MidSouth Bank is committed to making our communities better places to live and work,” said Chris Mosteller, Chief Banking Officer at MidSouth Bank. “We encourage others in the community to join our efforts to level the legal playing field for the economically disadvantaged among us, and we are excited to be a part of the Prime Partner Bank program, which can drastically improve the lives of these fellow Texans.”

Approximately 5.5 million Texans qualify for legal aid, and many are turned away simply because legal aid providers do not have the resources or funding to help everyone in need. Prime Partner banks help mitigate the decline in revenue available to fund legal aid.

All of MidSouth Bank’s Texas branches, including those in Dallas, Conroe, Greenville, Plano, Rockwall, Houston, Mesquite, Beaumont, College Station and Tyler, are now part of the Prime Partner Bank program. MidSouth Bank is now one of nearly 60 banks participating in the Prime Partner Bank program across the state. See a current list of Prime Partner banks in Texas at: http://www.teajf.org/financial_institutions/prime_partners.aspx

-30-

 

The Texas Access to Justice Foundation, created by the Supreme Court of Texas in 1984, is the largest state-based funding source for the provision of civil legal aid in Texas. The organization is committed to the vision that all Texans will have equal access to justice, regardless of their income. The Foundation administers a variety of funding sources, which are earmarked to assist nonprofit organizations in providing legal aid to more than 150,000 Texas families each year. For more information, please visit: www.teajf.org.


 

Contact: Kimberly Schmitt
512-320-0099, ext. 104
kschmitt@teajf.org

 

Recent News

 

April 15, 2019

MidSouth Bank Joins Prime Partner Program

April 5, 2019

Sexual assault is more common than you think - by Justice Eva Guzman - Houston Chronicle

April 4, 2019

Legal Aid Provides a Lifeline for Victims - by Betty Balli Torres - Austin American-Statesman  

Dec. 18, 2018

Victims of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Have Legal Aid Resources Available During the Holidays

Dec. 2018

Access to Justice For All Texas: 2018 Year-End Report 

Nov. 15, 2018

Perla Cavazos Appointed to TAJF Board of Directors

Nov. 7, 2018

Texas Veterans Legal Aid Week is Nov. 11-17

Oct. 18, 2018

Texas Rep. Oscar Longoria Honored with Legislative Hero Award

Sept. 10, 2018

Texas Brand Bank Joins Prime Partner Program

Sept. 5, 2018

Austin Capital Bank Joins Prime Partner Program

July 9, 2018

TAJF Proud to Join Equal Justice Works to Fund Disaster Legal Corps

June 29, 2018

Foundation Establishes Randy Chapman Fellowship to Impact Legal Aid in Texas 

June 19, 2018

Foundation Creates Families in Crisis on the Border Legal Aid Fund 

March 27, 2018

Foundation Creates David Hall Fellowship to Increase Legal Aid in Southwest Texas 

Jan. 24, 2018

TAJF Executive Director Named "Distinguished Lawyer"

 

More news

© 2018 Texas Access to Justice Foundation