What is the Law Foundation?

The Law Foundation is a body that grants funds to many different groups for projects connected with the law. It was established in 1976 by a Nova Scotia statute, on the recommendation of the lawyers in the province.

Where does the grant money come from?

The Law Foundation’s funds are derived from the interest earned on lawyers’ general trust accounts. If you purchase a house through a lawyer, or carry out other business through a lawyer’s office, your lawyer will frequently hold your money in trust. It your money is being held for a short time, it may be placed in your lawyer’s general trust account, and the interest on your money will be paid to the Law Foundation.

Subsections 30 (1), (2) and (3) of the Legal Profession Act state,

(1) Every member of the Society shall hold in trust money or property received in trust for a client or another person. 

(2) Money held in trust pursuant to subsection (1) shall be deposited to an interest-bearing account at a financial institution approved by the Council and at an interest rate approved by the Law Foundation.

(3) A financial institution holding trust funds pursuant to subsection (2) shall remit the interest earned on those funds, less any charges or fees for the operation of the account, to the Law Foundation semi-annually in April and October of each year.”

Financial institutions paid no interest on these accounts before the Law Foundation was established. The Foundation has agreements with approved financial institutions respecting the rates of interest to be paid and the procedure to be followed when remitting interest.

Is the money used for anything other than law related projects?

In 1981, the Law Foundation established a trust for the payment of scholarships to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Laws program at Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. In 2000, the Foundation established a trust to provide fellowships and research support to Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University post graduate students at the Masters and Doctoral levels.

Information and application forms for scholarships and fellowships can be obtained from the Admissions Office, Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, (902) 494-2068.