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Rural Attorney Recruitment Pilot Program

July 16, 2013

Category: recruitment, rural,

In 2013, the South Dakota Legislature approved the Recruitment Assistance Pilot Program to address the current and projected shortage of lawyers practicing in small communities and rural areas of South Dakota. 

This program provides qualifying attorneys an incentive payment in return for five (5) continuous years of practice in an eligible rural county. No more than sixteen (16) attorneys may participate in the program and no attorney may be added to the program after July 1, 2017. Attorneys must enter into a contract with the Unified Judicial System, the State Bar and the eligible County in order to participate. Qualifying attorneys within the program will receive an incentive payment, payable in five equal annual installments, each payment equal to 90% of one year’s resident tuition and fees at the University of South Dakota School of Law, as determined on July 1, 2013. 

Eligible rural counties:

To be eligible to participate in the recruitment assistance pilot program, a county within the State of South Dakota must:
  • Have a population of 10,000 or less;
  • Agree to pay 35% of the total amount of the incentive payment, payable in five equal annual payments. A county may prepay its portion of the incentive payment at any time during the five-year;
  • Apply to the UJS by submitting a letter of intent from the County Commissioners and be accepted into the program by the UJS; and
  • Is determined to be eligible by the UJS.

Tags: development, South Dakota, Workforce, expansion, start a business