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Connecticut IOLTA Trust Accounting Requirements

This blog post offers a concise overview of the IOLTA Trust accounting requirements for Connecticut lawyers, as laid out in Rule 1.15 of the Connecticut Practice Book. It lists essential accounting elements such as General and Client Ledgers, and explains the need for a triple reconciliation summary.
Connecticut IOLTA Trust Accounting Requirements
Written by
Paul W Carlson, CPA
Published on
May 4, 2020

A referenced Example IOLTA Trust Account Reconciliation and an introductory video are included to assist legal professionals in meeting these state mandates.

Connecticut IOLTA trust accounting rules are detailed in Connecticut Practice Book, Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 1.15.

Section 1.15.J requires the following items

General Ledger J.1 – Chronological report of all deposits and withdrawals from the trust account with a running balance.

Client Ledger J.2 – Client level chronological report of all deposits and withdrawals with running balances.

Copies of bank statements, images of deposited items, and copies of cleared checks J.7

Section J.10 would include the triple reconciliation summary used to tie the ending bank statement balance to the general and client ledgers.  Aggregate deposit and withdrawal reports are also covered by this section.

These requirements are included in our Example IOLTA Trust Account Reconciliation and introduction video.

Connecticut Practice Book

A lawyer who practices in this jurisdiction shall maintain current financial records as provided in this Rule and shall retain the following records for a period of seven years after termination of the representation:

  1. Receipt and disbursement journals containing a record of deposits to and withdrawals from client trust accounts, specifically identifying the date, source, and description of each item deposited, as well as the date, payee and purpose of each disbursement;
  2. Ledger records for all client trust accounts showing, for each separate trust client or beneficiary, the source of all funds deposited, the names of all persons for whom the funds are or were held, the amount of such funds, the descriptions and amounts of charges or withdrawals, and the names of all persons or entities to whom such funds were disbursed;
  3. Copies of retainer and compensation agreements with clients as required by Rule 1.5 of the Rules of Professional Conduct;
  4. Copies of accountings to clients or third persons showing the disbursement of funds to them or on their behalf;
  5. Copies of bills for legal fees and expenses rendered to clients;
  6. Copies of records showing disbursements on behalf of clients;
  7. The physical or electronic equivalents of all checkbook registers, bank statements, records of deposit, prenumbered canceled checks, and substitute checks provided by a financial institution;
  8. Records of all electronic transfers from client trust accounts, including the name of the person authorizing transfer, the date of transfer, the name of the recipient and confirmation from the financial institution of the trust account number from which money was withdrawn and the date and the time the transfer was completed;
  9. Copies of monthly trial balances and at least quarterly reconciliations of the client trust accounts maintained by the lawyer; and
  10. Copies of those portions of client files that are reasonably related to client trust account transactions.