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SPIF awards for the summer of 2017 will be based on 280 hours of work completed over a minimum of 8 weeks. A maximum of 37.5 hours per week will be counted towards the 280 hour requirement and any work beyond the 37.5 hours is considered volunteer and will not count towards the 280 hour requirement. SPIF awards are based on a student’s current academic progress towards their JD, whether they currently receive financial aid and if they have a child dependent.  These factors also determine the funding cap that is applied. The 2017 SPIF awards for 280 hours of work over a minimum of 8 weeks are the same for 1Ls, 2Ls, and SJDs:

  • $4,800 for students on financial aid*
  • $3,560 for students not on financial aid

* “on financial aid” is defined as being eligible for and receiving at least $20,500 in the form of an Unsubsidized Stafford need-based loan certified by the Student Financial Services office, or the equivalent for international students.

We do not create prorated awards for less than 280 hours except due to unusual circumstances (i.e. JD/MPH students have abbreviated summers). In order to receive a prorated award students need to obtain prior approval from the SPIF Office.

In most cases SPIF awards are distributed before the work is completed. Therefore, we use the Supervisor Evaluation and Time Log (due September 15th) to verify completion of the 280 hour requirement. Failure to meet the requirement of 280 hours over a minimum of 8 weeks, for ANY reason, will result in the forfeiture of the entire SPIF award which we will recoup by adding a charge to the student’s account. In rare instances, primarily in cases where there were unforeseen circumstances outside of a student’s control, the SPIF Committee may allow the student to keep a prorated portion of the award at the end of the summer. In those cases the student’s account will only be charged for the portion of the award for which they were ineligible.

Additionally, if a student receives supplemental funding over the course of the summer which increases their total funding for their SPIF position above the funding cap, they will be required to return a portion of their SPIF award in order to maintain consistency with the funding cap guidelines.

2L and SJD Bonuses

2Ls and SJDs will be eligible to receive an additional check at the end of the summer for completing 315 or 350 hours of work. As with the 280 hour requirement, a maximum of 37.5 hours per week will count towards the total number of hours worked so a minimum of 9 calendar weeks are needed to reach 315 hours and 10 calendar weeks are needed to reach 350 hours. The 2L and SJD awards and bonuses are structured as follows and must comply with the funding cap guidelines:

Hours Completed Total Award if On Financial Aid Total Award if Not on Aid
315-349 $5400 $4005
350+ $6000 $4450

Joint degree students who have completed 2 years at HLS are considered 2Ls for SPIF purposes. Those joint degree students who have only completed 1 year at HLS are considered 1Ls and are not eligible for the bonus.