Improving the Quality of Justice in our State Courts

Learn About SJI

State Justice Institute

The State Justice Institute (SJI) was established by federal law in 1984 to award grants to improve the quality of justice in state courts, and foster innovative, efficient solutions to common issues faced by all courts.


The deadline for new grant applications for the 1st quarter of FY 2021.

November 1, 2020

Grant Application Deadlines

SJI continues to make all grant reports and most grant products available online through the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) Library and Digital Archive.


Visit SJI’s Funding Toolkit for State Courts and Justice System Partners to learn about additional grant opportunities, access grant resources, and to request grant writing technical assistance.

NEW Request for Applications: Court Pandemic Response and Recovery

SJI is seeking to fund projects that assist state courts in their response to, and recovery from, COVID-19, with a look towards the future of court operations. In addition to meeting all other application requirements, SJI will give priority consideration for funding to projects that focus on institutionalizing and/or replicating practices that were implemented during the pandemic.

Applications, along with all required forms and attachments, are due to SJI via email to by August 14, 2020 to be eligible for consideration for the first round of review. Applications received after August 14, 2020 will be reviewed, and if approved, awarded on a rolling basis in FY 2021. Visit the Virtual Learning section of the Funding Toolkit for State Courts and Justice System Partners to learn more about SJI funding, including a podcast about this funding opportunity. Email with questions regarding this solicitation.

Special Note on Prohibited Costs for this Solicitation:

No grant funds or cash match may be used to pay the salary and related costs for a current or new employee of a court or other unit of government because such funds would constitute supplanting state or local funds in violation of 42 U.S.C. 10706(d)(1); this includes new employees hired specifically for the project. Grant funds cannot be used for the purpose of purchasing software and/or equipment, such as for conducting remote hearings, as these are considered basic court operations.


  • SJI Awards FY 2020 Third Quarter Grants to Support State Courts in COVID-19 Response and Recovery

    The SJI Board of Directors met virtually on June 29, 2020, to make decisions on quarterly grant applications, and approved two new grants to address the COVID-19 pandemic. A Strategic Initiatives Grant was awarded to the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) to support Phase I of the Conference of Chief Justices/Conference of State Court Administrators (CCJ/COSCA) Post Pandemic Planning Initiative.  For …

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  • SJI Funding Toolkit Launches Podcast Series

    SJI’s Funding Toolkit for State Courts and Justice System Partners is designed to support local courts, state courts, and their justice system partners as they pursue federal and philanthropic funding opportunities. The toolkit has a new virtual learning section that features webinars and podcasts designed to aid applicants in the grant process. The inaugural podcast …

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  • NCJFJC Releases Report on the 2nd National Summit on Courts and Military-Connected Families

    The National Council of Family and Juvenile Court Judges (NCJFCJ) held the Second National Summit on Courts and Military-Connected Families September 23-24, 2019, at Fort Knox, Kentucky. The one-and-a-half-day Summit brought together members and staff of the military-related committees of the NCJFCJ, subject matter experts, representatives of national-level organizations that serve military-connected families, stakeholders with local and state government …

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  • State of the State Courts Survey in a (Post) Pandemic World

    In June 2020, the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) released the latest version of the State of the State Courts Survey.  This survey revealed some interesting findings about appearing in courtrooms remotely during COVID-19: Two out of three people are receptive to appearing in courtrooms remotely—a significant increase from 2014, when only two out of …

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