Technology Initiative Grant Program

LSC Technology Initiative Grants seek to improve legal services delivery to the low-income population and to increase access by low-income persons to high quality legal services, to the judicial system, and to legal information.  

Technology can and must play a vital role in transforming service delivery so that all poor people in the United States with an essential civil legal need obtain some form of effective assistance.” - LSC’s Report of The Summit on the Use of Technology to Expand Access to Justice 

Overview

Since 2000, when Congress first appropriated special funds for the Technology Initiative Grants program, LSC has been a leader in the development and use of technology to more effectively meet the legal needs of low-income Americans.  

Over the past 20 years we have awarded nearly $70 million in grants for more than 750 projects that leverage technology to help meet the civil legal needs of low-income people. The amount of TIG funding available for fiscal year 2021 is approximately $4.25 million. In 2020, awards were made to 26 TIG projects with a median funding amount of $125,000.

The key goals of the TIG program are to encourage grantees to use technology in innovative ways to: 

  1. Effectively and efficiently provide high-quality legal assistance to low-income persons and to promote access to the judicial system through legal information, advice, and representation; 
  2. Improve service delivery, quality of legal work, and management and administration of grantees; and 
  3. Develop, test, and replicate innovative strategies that can enable grantees and state justice communities to improve clients’ access to high-quality legal assistance through an integrated and well-managed technology system. 

TIG funding has provided LSC with a remarkable opportunity to explore new ways to serve eligible persons, to help build legal aid programs' capacities, and to support the efforts of pro bono attorneys. These projects use a broad range of technologies -- including mobile, cloud computing, data analysis, and automated document assembly -- to make the delivery of legal services in the United States more efficient and effective.  

Eligibility

Technology Initiative Grant (TIG) applicants must be current grantees of LSC Basic Field-General, Basic Field-Migrant, or Basic Field-Native American grants. Although other entities are not eligible to apply, they are encouraged to participate as project partners. Applicants must be up to date according to the milestone/payment schedule on any existing TIG projects prior to submitting a new TIG application. TIGs will not be awarded to any applicant unless the applicant has made satisfactory progress on all TIGs previously awarded to it and is not currently subject to any short funding (i.e., less than one year) on basic field grants. See the current LSC basic field grant recipients

Technology Improvement Project applicants must be current grantees of LSC Basic Field-General, Basic Field-Migrant, or Basic Field-Native American grants that have not received a TIG award in the last five years. There is no pre-application requirement for TIP proposals. 

How to Apply

The TIG program has a two-step application process.

Step 1. Submit a Pre-Application (formerly Letter of Intent)

The TIG application process begins with the submission of a brief pre-application (formerly a letter of intent) in GrantEase. The submission of a pre-application enables a prospective grantee to get feedback on their project idea. We invite full proposals for those projects that have a reasonable chance of success in the grant competition process based on LSC’s analysis of the information provided in the pre-application. Prospective applicants are encouraged to contact TIG staff with any questions or to get information about prior TIG projects. 

Note: There is no pre-application requirement for Technology Improvement Project proposals.

2021 TIG Pre-Application Webinar

LSC hosted a webinar on the 2021 TIG cycle on April 8, 2021. This webinar reviewed the TIG cycle rules and requirements, the initial pre-application process, and the areas of interest. See the link below to watch the recording of the webinar.

Resources for Preparing TIG Pre-Applications

* These documents are intended to provide general guidance to applicants and may not meet all requirements.

Pre-application deadline: May 14, 2021. If you have questions, contact techgrants@lsc.gov

Step 2. Submit a Full Application

LSC invites successful pre-applicants to submit a full application in the LSC GrantEase online system. Applicants submitting in the Technology Improvement Project (TIP) category do not need to be invited. TIP applications will be available by June 15, 2021 in GrantEase.

TIG Funding Cycle Timeline 

EventDate
TIG Program Announcement April 1, 2021
TIG Pre-Application Webinar April 8, 2021
Technical Assistance Calls with Regional TIG Staff Mid-April to May 14, 2021
Pre-Application Due May 14, 2021
Invitations to Submit Full Applications Mid-June 2021
Technology Improvement Project Application Available June 15, 2021
Technical Assistance Calls with Regional TIG Staff Mid-June to July 31, 2021
Full Applications Due  August 6, 2021
TIG Award Announcements Mid-October 2021

 

Technology Resources for Legal Aid 

Reporting, Compliance Requirements & Applicable Law

TIGs are subject to the same rules and regulations as other grants from LSC. For guidance on the operation and responsibilities of LSC and its grantees, review the Rules & Regulations page on the LSC website. TIG awards are also subject to TIG Grant Assurances/Terms and Conditions found on the TIG Compliance page. 

For more information about managing a TIG project, see:

See the TIG Reporting section under Grantee Guidance for information on:

Awards

Submission Deadlines

  • Letter of Intent Notice Issued: April 1, 2021
  • Letters of Intent Due: May 14, 2021
  • Invitations for Full Applications: Mid-June 2021
  • Full Applications Due: August 6, 2021
  • Final Award Announcements: Mid-Fall 2021