Case Detail

Brown v. Legal Foundation of Washington
On March 26, 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Washington State's IOLTA (Interest on Lawyers' Trust Accounts) program, rejecting WLF's claims that the program violates the Fifth Amendment's prohibition against the uncompensated taking of private property. The decision was a setback for WLF, which filed suit against the program in 1997 on behalf of four Washington residents. Under IOLTA, interest earned on client funds being held by attorneys is confiscated by state governments and used to finance legal services for the poor. The Court held that this confiscation is constitutionally permissible because clients would have difficulty generating net interest on their funds if left to their own devices.
Case Status:
More Information and Downloads:
8/22/2002: Download the Brief
5/20/2002: Download the Brief
3/7/2002: Download the Brief

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