News Release

Nov. 14, 2023

First Lockhart National Bank joins Prime Partner program

Program boosts funding for legal aid in Texas

AUSTIN -- TThe Texas Access to Justice Foundation, the largest state-based funding source for civil legal aid, announced today First Lockhart National Bank is the newest bank to join the Foundation’s Prime Partner program, an ongoing initiative allowing thousands of Texans to receive legal assistance. First Lockhart National Bank has locations across Central Texas in Austin, Kyle, Lockhart and San Marcos.

Prime Partner banks and credit unions voluntarily pay higher interest rates for Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA), a method of raising money for civil legal aid and supporting improvements to the justice system. Prime Partner financial institutions pay 75% of the Federal Funds Target Rate on IOLTA accounts, which is well above the eligibility requirements for banks participating in the IOLTA program.

“When faced with evictions, domestic violence situations, and other economic hardships that require legal assistance to navigate, many Texans do not always have the financial resources to hire a lawyer,” Deborah Hankinson, chair of the board of directors for the Texas Access to Justice Foundation, said. “The Prime Partner program is vital in helping the Foundation provide essential legal aid services to more than 100,000 Texans across the state each year. We look forward to continuing to make an impact in Central Texas with First Lockhart National Bank as a Prime Partner bank.”

 Approximately five million Texans qualify for legal aid, the second-highest number in the nation. Legal aid organizations help Texas families each year, but due to a lack of resources, many continue to suffer or unsuccessfully attempt to represent themselves in the complex court system.

“First Lockhart National Bank is committed to making our communities a better place to live and work,” Mark Sheffield, chief executive officer and president of First Lockhart National Bank said. “We take great pride in our small role as a Prime Partner, as we contribute to the Texas Access to Justice Foundation’s vital mission to help disadvantaged Texans in need of legal support.”

Attorneys who handle client funds are required to keep those funds in IOLTA accounts until they can be made available to a client. The Texas Access to Justice Foundation receives funding from the interest generated by these accounts and uses the money to distribute grants to legal aid providers throughout the state. Prime Partners are critical to increasing this funding source that is essential to helping many of Texas’ most vulnerable residents.

For more information on becoming a Prime Partner, visit:

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Texas Access to Justice Foundation The Texas Access to Justice Foundation, created by the Supreme Court of Texas in 1984, is the primary 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 approximately 100,000 Texas families each year. For more information, please visit:

For more information:

Kimberly Schmitt
512-320-0099, ext. 104


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