The American Inns of Court Foundation


The American Inns of Court Foundation is a non-profit, tax exempt organization. It was created in May 1985 by and for the individual American Inns of Court. By becoming an active member of a local American Inn of Court, individuals automatically become members of the American Inns of Court Foundation. The objectives of the Foundation include: to charter Inns nationwide; to serve and foster communication among Inns; and to encourage membership in American Inns of Court. Our Inn pays annual dues to the Foundation.

The Foundation carries a national general liability policy and umbrella policy for bodily injury and property damage that covers all chartered Inns throughout the country. In addition, each Inn may be blanketed under the Foundation’s IRS 501(c)(3) tax exempt status, thereby eliminating the need to file an annual tax return as long as its average annual gross receipts do not exceed $25,000.

The Foundation also provides benefits to individual Inn members. These benefits include: (1) a subscription to The Bencher, a bimonthly newsletter providing information on American Inns of Court events at a regional and national level, as well as local events involving other Inns, and columns and articles dealing with timely issues of legal ethics; (2) a listing in the National Membership Directory published each year with the assistance of the WestGroup; and (3) a reciprocal visitation agreement with the four English Inns of Court which enables individual Inn members to visit and dine in the English Inns. American Inns of Court members are required to obtain a letter of introduction from the Foundation before visiting one of the English Inns.

Periodically, the Foundation hosts a national conference that is traditionally held in May and is rotated among cities throughout the country. In addition to the annual conference, the Foundation holds annual regional workshops that focus on the real nuts and bolts of running an effective Inn. In October of each year, the Foundation hosts an annual leadership dinner at the United States Supreme Court for the purpose of honoring local, regional, and national leaders and to present the A. Sherman Christensen Award, the Lewis F. Powell Award for Professionalism and Ethics, and the Sandra Day O’Connor Award for Professional Service.

The Foundation may be contacted at:

American Inns of Court Foundation
225 Reinekers Lane, Suite 770
Alexandria, Virginia 22314

Telephone: (703) 684-3590
Fax: (703) 684-3607

Web site:


  1. To promote, establish and charter American Inns of Court throughout the United States.
  2. To help ensure the vitality and continuity of local Inns.
  3. To facilitate the exchange of ideas, experiences and ongoing education among members of the American Inns of Court, thereby maintaining an institutional forum where judges, lawyers, academicians and students of law, working together, pursue the highest goals of the legal profession.
  4. To shape a culture of excellence in American jurisprudence by promoting a commitment to professionalism, ethics, civility and legal skills in the practice of law, and transmitting these values from one generation of lawyers to the next.
  5. To ensure the viability and long-term stability of the American Inns of Court Foundation.
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