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FAQs

For any questions not listed, email the Competition Service Desk at competition@lsc.gov or LSC Grants Tech Support at techsupport@lsc.gov.

General Information

Locating and Accessing Documents

Completing the Application

NIC Questions

For Renewal Applicants

For Current Recipients

For Those Applying to More Than One Service Area

Technical Questions

Regarding PAI (Private Attorney Involvement)

What are the eligibility requirements to apply for a grant?

The following persons, groups, and entities are eligible to compete for a grant:

  1. current recipients
  2. non-profit organizations that have as a purpose the provision of legal assistance to eligible clients
  3. private attorneys, groups of attorneys or law firms
  4. state or local governments
  5. sub-state regional planning or coordination agencies that are composed of sub-state areas whose governing boards are controlled by locally elected officials

All successful applicants must have a governing or policy body consistent with the requirements of 45 C.F.R. Part 1607 of the LSC regulations. An applicant that is not in compliance at the time the grant is awarded will be required to be in compliance with 45 C.F.R. Part 1607 within sixty days from the date the grant award is made.

See Threshold Requirements for Qualified Grant Applications and Applicant Eligibility for more information on eligibility. Applicants should also review the provisions of the LSC Act, regulations, guidelines, the 1996 LSC appropriations act and subsequent appropriations acts. These provisions contain restrictions on the activities of recipients of LSC funds and may affect the eligibility of potential applicants. All of these documents are available from the Reference Materials page. 

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What is a service area?

There are three types of service areas: Basic Field-General, Basic Field-Native American, and Basic Field-Migrant. To view a description of each LSC service area and when each service area is next expected to be in Competition, see the Where We Fund page.

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Is more than one grant awarded per service area?

LSC generally will not award more than one grant per service area. Please refer to LSC Regulation 45 C.F.R. § 1634.3(d) (Competitive Grants and Contracts) for more information.

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Where are the forms referenced in the RFP located?

The RFP forms are completed and submitted online at www.lscgrants.lsc.gov. Applicants complete the forms by logging in to LSC Grants Online Application System.

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Are grant renewal applicants required to prepare a NIC?

No, renewal applicants do not file a NIC. After logging into the LSC Grants Online Application System at www.lscgrants.lsc.gov, Renewal Applicants will have a link in their To Do list indicating for each service area. Click on the "Submit Renewal Application" (or the "Submit Post-PQV Renewal Application" for Post-PQV Applicants) to access the application.

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I have submitted a NIC. What are the next steps? How long will it take LSC to process the NIC?

LSC Grants will send an automated message to the email address on file confirming the submission. Allow 48 hours for LSC to review the NIC. You will receive another automated message to the email address on file when the NIC has been approved. The "Submit Application" link will now appear in the To Do list after the user logs in to LSC Grants. Click on the "Submit Application" link to begin work on the application.

Note: NICs for Post-PQV Applicants will not be approved until the Post-PQV RFP is published in May, 2013 (for PQV reports received by April 30, 2013) or July 1, 2013 (for PQV reports received by July 1, 2013).

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Where can I find instructions for the PAI plan?

The instructions for preparing the PAI plan are available in each of the grant application instruction documents (2014 RFP Narrative Instruction, 2014 Standard Grant Renewal, 2014 Post-PQV Grant Application, and 2014 Post-PQV Grant Renewal Instructions). The instruction documents are available for download on the Application Documents page.

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Where can I find instructions for the Technology plan?

The instructions for preparing the Technology plan are available in each of the grant application instruction documents (2014 RFP Narrative Instruction, 2014 Standard Grant Renewal, 2014 Post-PQV Grant Application, and 2014 Post-PQV Grant Renewal Instructions). The instruction documents are available for download on the Application Documents page.

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I have completed my application for an LSC grant, but the system won’t let me submit it. How do I resolve this?

The LSC Grants system will not allow a user to submit an incomplete application. Use the Review and Submit page to verify that all forms have been completed and all required uploads have been submitted. You will find a link to the Review and Submit page at the bottom of the blue navigation bar on the left-hand side of the page.

Review and Submit Screenshot

The Review and Submit page will display a green check mark for every complete form and a red X when information is missing. The page will also detail which specific inquiries on each form remain to be answered in order for the form to be complete. When all forms are complete the application may be submitted.

Green Checkmarks

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I am completing a NIC. In the Key Staff Members section, our program has a key staff member who does not fit into the title categories in the drop-down list provided by LSC. Should I include that staff member?

No. In this section of the NIC, include only those staff members whose titles reflect the five choices provided under "Key Staff Members." Those five choices are:

  • Executive Director
  • Deputy Director
  • Director of Litigation
  • General Counsel
  • Fiscal Officer

Applicants will have the opportunity to more fully discuss their staff within the Proposal Narrative and upload the resumes of key staff such as Chief of Operations and the Chief Financial Officer.

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Do I have to complete forms D-2 and D-4?

Current LSC recipients do not complete forms D-2 (Current Year Expenses) or D-4 (Current Year Revenue).

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Do I have to complete form E-1?

Current LSC recipients do not complete form E-1 (Actual Staffing Information).

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Do I have to complete form G-1?

Current LSC recipients do not complete form G-1 (Current Year Client Services).

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Do applicants submit resumes of Board Members and key staff in the NIC?

No, applicants do not submit resumes in the NIC. Use two or three brief sentences to provide relevant biographical and experience information. Applicants will submit resumes with the application.

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What file format do the resumes need to be submitted in?

All resumes will be submitted together in a single PDF file. The resumes are not submitted with the Proposal Narrative.

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The application instructions state applicants should submit the Organizational Chart as a PDF file. Should we also submit the Organizational Chart with the Proposal Narrative?

Do not submit the Organizational Chart with the Proposal Narrative. In the Uploads page, select Organizational Chart from the drop-down menu and the Organizational Chart individually as a PDF file.

Select correct upload from drop-down menu

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Several online RFP forms have red asterisks next to various items. What do the red asterisks indicate?

The red asterisks denote questions that are required for all applicants. LSC Grants will not allow users to submit the application until all required questions have been answered.

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In our application forms, the D-12, D-13, and D-14 were pre-populated. Where did the figures come from?

That information comes from the most recent competitive grant or grant renewal application submitted.

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There will be no subgrants included in our application. Is it necessary to upload the Subgrant Inquiries with a note that says "Not Applicable"?

If you do not plan to use subgrants, the Subgrant Inquiries are not required.

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How should an applicant respond to questions pertaining to Private Attorney Involvement (PAI) if the applicant does not have a PAI project?

If your program does not have a PAI program for a Native American or migrant service area, or if your program was granted a waiver of the PAI requirement, simply respond to PAI questions in the RFP by stating "Our program does not have a PAI program for this service area," or state that "The program has received a PAI waiver from LSC." Enter zeros or "none" for the forms that pertain to the PAI program. 

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Our organization is applying for more than one service area. When I accessed the Applicant Organizational Overview form for our second service area, the form was already complete. Where did that information come from?

For applicants applying to more than one service area, the Applicant Organizational Overview is linked for all service areas. Any changes made to this form while working on one service area’s application will automatically be transferred to the applications for other service area(s). When responding to questions in the Applicant Organizational Overview form, ensure the response addresses all service areas applied for.

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What is meant by the most senior attorney(s)?

Senior attorneys are those attorneys who are in senior positions, e.g., General Counsel, Director of Litigation, or Managing Attorney.

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Does LSC accept hard copies of grant proposal documents?

No. LSC does not accept hard copies of any grant proposal documents. Please refer to the RFP Narrative Instruction for a listing of all documents to be submitted and the submission format.

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Can an applicant compete for a portion of a service area of for less than the full amount of estimated grant funds available for a service area?

An applicant must compete for the full service area and the full amount of estimated grant funds available for the service area. Where applicants plan to provide less than the full range of legal services to clients in a service area, e.g., services limited to representation in a single area of the law or a few areas of law such as housing, divorces, or bankruptcy, or proposals limited to a particular type of representation such as advice and brief service – the grant application will not be accepted, unless the applicant demonstrates to LSC's satisfaction, that it is or will be, part of a delivery system that ensures the availability of a full range of legal assistance in that service area. The grant application in its totality must meet this threshold requirement to be considered qualified.

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Our program is applying for more than one service area. What is required of applicants competing for more than one service area?

Applicants are required to respond to the RFP Inquiries and Charts for each service area for which they are competing. Applicants are also required to submit discrete budget and revenue data for each service area. Applicants are encouraged to refer to the RFP Narrative Instruction for details on application submission requirements.

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Does LSC require that the full governing/policy body of an applicant approve the submission of the grant proposal to LSC?

No. The Corporation requires that the executive director (or functional equivalent) and the governing/policy body Chair certify, on Form I, that a copy of the proposal submitted in response to the Request for Proposals has been made available to each member of its governing/policy body and key staff members.

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What documents must be submitted as part of the grant application?

The required documents are listed for each type of application. On the Application Process page, click the link to select the type of application you plan to file to see more information. 

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Where can I access the full RFP?

The RFP contains general information and the instructions for preparing the proposal narrative. There are four separate instructions: one for Standard RFP Competition Applicants, one for Standard RFP Renewal Applicants, one for Post-PQV Competition Applicants and one for Post-PQV Renewal Applicants. Visit the Application Documents page to download any of the 2014 instruction documents.

The RFP forms are completed and submitted online through the LSC Grants Online Application System at www.lscgrants.lsc.gov

It is also useful to review reference materials. Click to review the Reference Materials page.

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My office cannot access the LSC Grants website. Is a printed copy of the RFP available?

LSC will provide a printed copy of the RFP if the RFP cannot be electronically accessed. Applicants must, however, file all grant application forms and documents electronically. Contact competition@lsc.gov to request a printed copy of the RFP.

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What are the steps and the deadlines for preparing and submitting grant application documents to LSC?

The required steps and deadlines are listed for each type of Application. On the Application Process page, click the link to select the type of application you plan to file to see more information. 

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What is a McCollum Attorney?

A McCollum Attorney is an attorney member of a Board appointed by the governing body of a State, county or municipal bar association which represents a majority of attorneys in a recipient’s service area, or which is one of two or more such bar associations which collectively represent a majority of attorneys in the service area.

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How do I access and prepare the Notice of Intent to Compete (NIC)?

The NIC for 2014 grants will be available on or around April 12, 2013. Before beginning a NIC, confirm that the service area you would like to apply for is in competition for 2014 by consulting the Where We Fund page. 

To prepare a NIC requires applicants to log in to LSC Grants. Current grantees use the email address currently on file and existing password; new applicants will be prompted to register.

Once logged in, from the home page, scroll down to the heading "Service Areas in Competition for 2014 LSC Grants" and click the link to create a new NIC.

On the following page, review the instructions and select the service area for which you want to submit a NIC. Please note that not all service areas will appear in the drop-down menu; only service areas in competition will appear. 

Select Service Area Screenshot
 

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How do I retrieve my lost password for the LSC Grants Online Application System?

Click the Forgot your password? link located beneath the Log In button on the LSC Grants Login page. Then enter your primary email address and click Submit. Your password will be sent to the primary email address.

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How do I access my locked LSC Grants account?

Please email LSC Grants Tech Support at techsupport@lsc.gov to request that your account be unlocked. Note that your account is locked after four unsuccessful login attempts.

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How do I print out my application?

Log into your account at www.lscgrants.lsc.gov. From the home page, scroll down to the To Do list. Click the "View PDF" button for the application you wish to print out. The PDF document may then be saved or printed.

View PDF button Screenshot

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What is the log-in information for our organization?

If you have forgotten your log-in information for your organization, send an email LSC Grants Tech Support at techsupport@lsc.gov to request your log-in information.

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Our program is applying for more than one service area. How should we respond to the RFP Inquiries?

When applying for multiple service areas, applicants must prepare grant proposals for each service area separately. In responding to the RFP Inquiries in each grant proposal, applicants are expected to specifically describe the service delivery system for that service area.

In some instances, the response to an RFP Inquiry may be the same for two or more service areas applied for. In those instances, applicants may enter a response for the service area receiving the largest grant, and in the grant proposals for the additional service area(s), may state “Applicant services and activities are the same for this service area as for (state the service area).”

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The instructions state that applicants must upload the IRS 990 form for the previous year. However, my program has received a filing extension from the IRS, and the 990 form will not be available until after the grant application deadline. What should we do?

If your program has received a filing extension from the IRS, please submit the approved extension request, and then submit the 990 form once it is available by emailing it to competition@lsc.gov.

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