Through the Herbert S. Garten Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP), established in 2005 and funded by a Congressional appropriation, LSC makes a limited number of forgivable loans to attorneys employed by its grantee programs to help repay law school debt. The goals of the LRAP are to help LSC grantee programs recruit and retain highly qualified attorneys, and to promote the development of initiatives that make public interest law a viable career path for law school graduates.
Legal aid attorneys often have large, outstanding law school loans.
Salaries of civil legal aid lawyers are among the lowest in the legal profession – typically lower than public defenders.
The average salary for a newly graduated attorney at an LSC-funded program is a little under $44,000 per year.
According to American Bar Association statistics, the average amount borrowed for law school by 2009-2010 graduates was $106,249 for private schools and $68,827 for public schools. In some cases these students are taking on law school debt in addition to debt incurred to pay for undergraduate studies.
LSC's LRAP program provides up to $16,800 per attorney.
The program focuses on legal aid lawyers with five years of experience or less.
Each participant receives up to $5,600 per year for three years – for a maximum of $16,800 if they remain eligible and funding remains available.
Participants must commit to remain with the LSC-funded legal services program for three years.
Since its inception, 325 attorneys have participated in LSC’s LRAP.
LSC’s LRAP was created in 2005. The LSC Board of Directors renamed the program in 2009 in honor of Herbert S. Garten, a Board member and longtime champion of equal justice in his home state of Maryland.
Find information about the LSC LRAP application process and/or contact the LRAP Coordinator.
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