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Title 45Subtitle BChapter XVI → Part 1609

Title 45: Public Welfare


§1609.1   Purpose.
§1609.2   Definition.
§1609.3   General requirements.
§1609.4   Accounting for and use of attorneys' fees.
§1609.5   Acceptance of reimbursement from a client.
§1609.6   Recipient policies, procedures and recordkeeping.

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 2996f(b)(1) and 2996e(c)(6).

Source: 62 FR 19399, Apr. 21, 1997, unless otherwise noted.

§1609.1   Purpose.

This part is designed:

(a) To ensure that recipients do not use scarce legal services resources when private attorneys are available to provide effective representation and

(b) To assist eligible clients to obtain appropriate and effective legal assistance.

§1609.2   Definition.

(a) Fee-generating case means any case or matter which, if undertaken on behalf of an eligible client by an attorney in private practice, reasonably may be expected to result in a fee for legal services from an award to a client, from public funds or from the opposing party.

(b) Fee-generating case does not include a case where:

(1) A court appoints a recipient or an employee of a recipient to provide representation in a case pursuant to a statute or a court rule or practice equally applicable to all attorneys in the jurisdiction, or

(2) A recipient undertakes representation under a contract with a government agency or other entity.

§1609.3   General requirements.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, a recipient may not use Corporation funds to provide legal assistance in a fee-generating case unless:

(1) The case has been rejected by the local lawyer referral service, or by two private attorneys; or

(2) Neither the referral service nor two private attorneys will consider the case without payment of a consultation fee.

(b) A recipient may provide legal assistance in a fee-generating case without first attempting to refer the case pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section only when:

(1) An eligible client is seeking benefits under Subchapter II of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 401 et seq., as amended, Federal Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance Benefits; or Subchapter XVI of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. 1381 et seq., as amended, Supplemental Security Income for Aged, Blind, and Disabled;

(2) The recipient, after consultation with appropriate representatives of the private bar, has determined that the type of case is one that private attorneys in the area served by the recipient ordinarily do not accept, or do not accept without prepayment of a fee; or

(3) The director of the recipient, or the director's designee, has determined that referral of the case to the private bar is not possible because:

(i) Documented attempts to refer similar cases in the past generally have been futile;

(ii) Emergency circumstances compel immediate action before referral can be made, but the client is advised that, if appropriate, and consistent with professional responsibility, referral will be attempted at a later time; or

(iii) Recovery of damages is not the principal object of the recipient's client's case and substantial statutory attorneys' fees are not likely to be available.

[62 FR 19399, Apr. 21, 1997, as amended at 75 FR 6818, Feb. 11, 2010; 76 FR 23504, Apr. 27, 2011]

§1609.4   Accounting for and use of attorneys' fees.

(a) Attorneys' fees received by a recipient for representation supported in whole or in part with funds provided by the Corporation shall be allocated to the fund in which the recipient's LSC grant is recorded in the same proportion that the amount of Corporation funds expended bears to the total amount expended by the recipient to support the representation.

(b) Attorneys' fees received shall be recorded during the accounting period in which the money from the fee award is actually received by the recipient and may be expended for any purpose permitted by the LSC Act, regulations and other law applicable at the time the money is received.

[75 FR 6818, Feb. 11, 2010]

§1609.5   Acceptance of reimbursement from a client.

(a) When a case results in recovery of damages or statutory benefits, a recipient may accept reimbursement from the client for out-of-pocket costs and expenses incurred in connection with the case, if the client has agreed in writing to reimburse the recipient for such costs and expenses out of any such recovery.

(b) A recipient may require a client to pay court costs when the client does not qualify to proceed in forma pauperis under the rules of the jurisdiction.

[75 FR 6818, Feb. 11, 2010]

§1609.6   Recipient policies, procedures and recordkeeping.

Each recipient shall adopt written policies and procedures to guide its staff in complying with this part and shall maintain records sufficient to document the recipient's compliance with this part.

[62 FR 19399, Apr. 21, 1997. Redesignated at 75 FR 6818, Feb. 11, 2010]

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