Scholarship and Tuition Discounts

Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
Section:     Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Program
Title:           Scholarships and Tuition Discounts
Adopted:    October 28, 2016
Purpose of the Statement of Policy. The Association strives to be a leader in the continued growth and excellence of Pennsylvania’s criminal defense legal profession.  It promotes justice for all by advancing the quality and skills of criminal defense lawyers.  The Association also strives to meet the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania’s Continuing Legal Education Board’s rules and regulations that include the following condition of accreditation for Accredited Providers.
               Section 11: Accreditation of Accredited Continuing Legal Education Providers
                                *             *             *
               (h) The provider shall have available a financial hardship policy for attorneys who wish to attend its courses, but for whom the
​               cost of such courses would be a financial hardship. Upon request by the Board, the provider must produce the detailed     financial hardship policy. The policy may be in the form of scholarships, waivers of course fees, reduced fees, or discounts. 
PACDL Reduced Tuition FeesThe Association offers reduced tuition rates to members of the Association at varying price structures with more substantial discounted rates to public defender members and young lawyers licensed less than 5 years.  PACDL members in good standing and whose dues are current may register at discounted member rates for all PACDL CLE trainings, seminars and conferences. Registration discounts for certain PACDL training, seminars and conferences may also be offered to members of the Juvenile Defender Association of Pennsylvania who are in good standing and whose dues are current. If a program has an early bird or other special pricing option, discounts will be based on the full tuition price.
ScholarshipsThe Association provides partial scholarships for most accredited seminars (subject to the availability of funds) to PACDL members whose dues are current. These are available on a confidential basis to attorneys with limited financial means (as further described below) to meet up to 12 credits of their current Pennsylvania CLE requirement.
Scholarship Application Process.  A completed seminar or conference registration form along with a letter requesting a scholarship must be sent to PACDL no later than 30 days before the date of the CLE program that the applicant seeks to attend. The letter shall detail the reasons for the scholarship based on financial hardship and their eligibility.  Scholarship requests must be directed to:  PACDL, 115 State Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101 or  
Scholarship Eligibility.  PACDL members may make a confidential application if they satisfy all of the following criteria:

1. The attorney is licensed in Pennsylvania, in good standing, and in active status in Pennsylvania.
​2. The attorney provides evidence of a documented financial hardship.
The attorney must not have been approved for a PACDL scholarship within the attorney’s current reporting period.
The attorney certifies that information provided in support of the application is true and correct to the best of the attorney’s knowledge, information and belief.    

In addition, even if an applicant is deemed to be eligible, a scholarship application will not be approved:

  1. If the attorney has already earned CLE credit sufficient to complete the attorney’s CLE requirement for the attorney’s current reporting period;
  2. PACDL is under a contractual obligation with a third party that prohibits discounted registrations for the requested program;
  3. The scholarship funds have been depleted or significantly reduced;
  4. The application is not timely received;
  5. PACDL determines, at its sole discretion, that the attorney’s financial hardship is not sufficient to qualify for the PACDL scholarship program; or
  6. The applicant has sufficient access to CLE resources to meet CLE requirements without scholarship assistance.
Scholarship Awards.  Preference will be given to those criminal defense attorneys who are engaged in full-time public defense work, have less than 5 years of experience, and demonstrate a significant financial hardship which is defined as annual income at or below 200% of the federal poverty level guidelines. If a program has an early bird or other special pricing option, any scholarship reduction will be based on the full tuition price.  The determination of the scholarship and training discount is at the discretion of the executive director of PACDL.