Affirmative Legislative Program

Affirmative Legislative Program

Each year, the ISBA’s affirmative legislative program includes proposals for enactment by Iowa’s Legislature for the benefit of Iowa’s citizens. For example, after extensive study, the Association has recommended adoption and/or amendment of the Probate Code, Trust Code, Commercial Code and Business Corporation Act. It has also been active in studies and recommendations concerning community-based corrections programs for drug-addicted, non-violent criminal offenders; for improvements in laws governing electronic commerce; and in proposed legislation for the modernization of real estate records.

2020 Affirmative Legislative

Bill # SSB 3037/ HSB 538

Business Law

Uniform Protected Series Act Clean-Up


Corrective Provisions to the Uniform Protected Series Act that passed last year, that provides a comprehensive framework for the formation and operation of a protected series limited liability company. To amend the Iowa Uniform Protected Series Act (UPSA) [SF569] to add section 489.14801 that will read, “In applying and construing the Iowa Uniform Protected Series Act, consideration must be given to the need to promote uniformity of the law with respect to its subject matter among states that enact the Uniform Protected Series Act.”

Bill Status

Senate: Subcommittee meeting scheduled for 12:30 on 1/28/20 with Senators Whiting, Hogg and Sinclair.

House: Assigned to a subcommittee of Representatives Jones, Paustian and Wilburn

Bill # SSB 3029/ HSB 529

Business Law

Registered Agent Clean-up

The proposal deals with the effective date of resignation by a registered agent of (1) a corporation and also (2) other business entities. The MBCA 4th edition makes the resignation effective “on the earlier of (1) 12:01 a.m. on the 31st day after the day on which it is filed by the secretary of state; or (2) the designation of a new registered agent for the corporation.” That will change current Iowa corporate law (§490.503), which makes the resignation effective immediately upon filing by the secretary of state, but the change is consistent with current Iowa law for limited liability partnerships (§ 486A.1213) and cooperative associations (§ 499.74). It is not consistent, however, with the law for limited partnerships (§ 488.116), limited liability companies (§ 489.116), unincorporated nonprofit associations (§ 501B.11(4), and nonprofit corporations (§ 504.503), for all of which the agent’s resignation is effective immediately upon filing by the Secretary of State

Senate: Subcommittee meeting scheduled for 4:30 on 1/27/20 with Senators Whiting, Hogg and Sweeney

House: Assigned to a subcommittee of Representatives Hagenow, Gustafson and B. Meyer


Bill # HSB 20/ SF 604

Probate & Trust Law

Calculation of Probate Court Costs


Iowa Code §633.31 is currently being applied inconsistently throughout the state. There are now several district court cases declaring the clerks in at least six counties to be calculating court fees inappropriately.  The bill addresses how the clerk of probate court determines and collects charges in connection with services provided in probate matters.  Excludes from the determination of court fees property over which the court lacks probate jurisdiction and for which the clerk renders no services.

HSB 20 – subcommittee recommends passage 2019 Session

SF 604 Unanimously Passed Senate 50-0 now in House Ways & Means.


Bill # SSB 3038

Probate & Trust Law
Family Law

Guardianship & Conservatorship Update


Proposed changes to HF 610 & HF 591 to “fix” technical errors and substantive issues with the legislation that passed last year.

Senate: Assigned to the Subcommittee of Senators Dawson, Schultz, and Bisignano.

House: In Drafting


Business Law

Uniform Model Corporations Act

 Along with thirty-three other States and the District of Columbia, Iowa has generally followed the Model Business Corporation Act in enacting the law governing business corporations.  It is substantively sound and well drafted, and it offers benefits to Iowa courts, practitioners, and businesses on account of its widespread adoption, court interpretations (although non-binding), and useful Official Comments.  In December 2016 the ABA Corporate Laws Committee published a 4th Edition of the MBCA.  The 4th Edition amends the MBCA in various substantive ways.  It also represents in part a restatement of the MBCA to include amendments approved since publication of the 3rd Edition; and in recognition of continuing developments in the law, the 4th Edition integrates the MBCA with the law governing unincorporated business associations such as LLCS.  Finally, some changes were made simply to improve clarity.

In Drafting in the House

In Drafting in the Senate

    Last updated 1-28-20

In addition to the above legislative proposals, The Iowa State Bar Association supports the following standing positions as a part of its 2020 Affirmative Legislative Program:

  • Full funding of indigent defense and adoption of legislation providing for $5.00 per hour increase with an automatic cost of living increase in indigent defense fees.
  • Full Funding of the Judicial Branch.
  • Full funding for Legal Services.
  • Full funding of the IA Secretary of State’s Office as requested by IA Secretary of State Paul Pate.
  • Full funding for Office of the Public Guardian to protect the interests of Iowans who have no one else to manage their financial and health care needs.
  • Support child abuse prevention and treatment efforts and funding for child abuse prevention and treatment.
  • Oppose the legalization of title insurance.
  • Oppose absolute immunity legislation.

Our Legislative Program

ISBA Standing Positions

Legislative Resources


ISBA Legislative Counsel

Jim Carney
Legislative Counsel
(515) 689-3189

Doug Struyk
Assistant Legislative Counsel
(402) 510-1576

Jenny Dorman
Assistant Legislative Counsel
(515) 282-6803