Our Constitution

    1. NAME: The name of the Association is PRETORIA ATTORNEYS ASSOCIATION (“PAA”).
    2. OFFICES: The offices of the PAA shall be in Pretoria
    3. OBJECTS: The objects of the PAA are the following:
      1. To promote the common interest of persons practising as Attorneys in Pretoria.
      2. To co-operate with other Attorneys Associations as well as with other professional structures created by statute.
      3. To make representations on behalf of members to Government Departments, professional structures in the legal profession and other bodies or
        persons;
      4. To establish closer relations and association between members of the legal profession whether professionally, socially or otherwise;
      5. To foster legal studies and to grant bursaries to needy students;
      6. To consider legislation and to make representations, if necessary, in connection therewith;
      7. To promote transformation in the legal profession with emphasis on gender equality, people with disabilities and previously disadvantaged individuals;
      8. To relieve cases of hardship and distress amongst members of the PAA and their families and to make donations in this regard to such members and to
        create a Benevolent Fund;
      9. To mediate between members and adjust and settle differences between them whenever called upon by such members;
      10. To afford opportunity for the expression of the views of members on matters affecting the legal profession;
      11. To acquire any rights or privileges which the PAA may regard as necessary or convenient for its purposes;
      12. To purchase, hire or otherwise acquire, any movable or immovable property and to erect buildings thereon and to sell, improve or lease or otherwise
        deal with all or any of the property or assets of the PAA;
      13. To collect, canvass for and to accept subscriptions, donations, bequests, endowments and benefits or any nature of the PAA from any person or body
        and from any source whatever;
      14. To raise or borrow money from time to time in such manner as the PAA may think fit, and to mortgage or hypothecate all or any of the property of the
        PAA present as well as future;
      15. To promote continuing legal educations;
      16. To keep members informed of matters affecting the profession.
      17. To arrange meetings of its members for social, educational or professional purposes;
      18. To circulate information to members of interest in their practices to them electronically and otherwise;
      19. To establish a fund for the purposes of carrying out the objects of the PAA and to make such payments as may be deemed necessary;
      20. Subject to the provision that the PAA shall not distribute any of its profits or gains to any person and may utilize its funds only for investment or its
        objects, to make such presentations and or donations to members and employess of PAA, senior Civil Servants and other public officials associated
        with the profession, to make such monetary contributions to Christmas parties given by Government Departments associated with the profession and
        to give such tokens of appreciation and/or sympathy as the Committee in its absolute discretion may think fit;
      21. To do all such other things as are incidental or conductive to the attainment of these objects;
      22. To enforce the PAA’s code of conduct, a copy of which is annexed hereto and marked Schedule 3.
      23. To determine and implement measures in order to ensure member’s compliancy with the code of conduct.
    4. MEMBERSHIP: The PAA shall consist of members, honorary members and associate members.
      1. The members of the PAA shall be such persons practising (whether as principles or otherwise) as Attorneys in Pretoria who apply for membership and
        whose applications may be accepted by the Committee;
      2. The honorary members of the PAA shall be those persons not being eligible for membership who by reason of their services whether to the PAA or to
        the Legal profession generally may be elected by a General Meeting of the PAA as honorary members. Honorary Membership shall be conferred for
        life and shall confer on such person all the rights, and privileges of membership, and impose on him all the obligations thereof save that he/she shall
        not be required to pay any subscriptions;
      3. Candidate Attorneys serving Articles of Clerkship with Attorneys practising in Pretoria shall be eligible for PAA membership;
    5. CESSATION OF MEMBERSHIP: A member or associate member shall cease to be a member or associate member as the case may be of the PAA under any of the following circumstances;
      1. He/she resigned from such membership and his/her resignation is accepted by the Committee;
      2. His/her subscription hereafter provided for is in arrear for a period of 6 (six) months and he/she shall fail, notwithstanding demand, to pay the amount
        of the arrears and the committee resolves that his/her membership of the PAA be terminated;
      3. He be expelled from the PAA by resolution of the PAA at a General Meeting of the PAA. The resolution for such expulsion shall only be deemed to have
        been passed if it is approved by two-thirds of the members present as such meeting;
      4. A member who, despite a warning and/of discussion and direction, is found guilty of unethical and/or improper and/or unseemly conduct in
        contravention of the code of conduct and his/her membership is suspended or terminated by the committee.
    6. SUBSCRIPTION: A subscription is determined by the Annual General Meeting from time to time shall be paid by each member except honorary and associate members, who shall not pay a subscription as determined by the Annual General Meeting from time to time. The financial year of the PAA shall commence on the first day of June in each year and subscriptions shall be due and payable on such date: provided that for the purpose of clause 12 (a) and clause 5 (c) hereof, a member shall not be regarded as being in arrear unless his/her subscription remains unpaid for 14 (fourteen) days after written notice has been given to him by the PAA that his/her subscription is actually in arrears, and provided further that the committee referred to in clause 7 below, shall be entitled to at any time to increase the subscription for the ensuing year by an amount not exceeding 10% (ten percent) of the then current subscription.
    7. MANAGEMENT:
        1. The affairs of the PAA shall be managed by a Committee consisting of a Chairman, a Vice-Chairman, a Secretary and a Treasurer and 10 (ten)
          committee members, all of whom shall be elected from those members referred to in Rule 4 (a) at the Annual General Meeting of the PAA, or at any
          other meeting of the PAA specially called for such purpose;
        2. The General Meeting shall first out of those persons nominated in terms of clause 7 (c) hereof elect 14 (fourteen) persons to hold office as members
          of the committee until the next annual meeting. If there be an equality of votes for the last one or more places in such committee revoting shall take
          place in which all the members present at the meeting shall be entitled to take part as to which of the nominees who have received such equal
          number of votes shall be elected to the committee.
        3. A member who, with the object of gaining election to the Committee, or of advancing his prospects of election, canvasses for votes, or offers any
          inducement or assistance, or in any other way promotes or is a party to the promotion of his own candidature, other than by accepting or indicating
          the he/she is prepared to accept nomination, shall be guilty of unprofessional conduct and not be allowed to take part in the elections so canvassed
          for. If however, such a member was elected and then found guilty, and notwithstanding any punishment opposed on him/her, he/she will summarily
          be removed from office by the Committee at a special Committee meeting convened for the purpose of considering his/her removal, provided that
          the quorum at any such meeting shall be 10 (ten) members of the Committee, exclusive of the member whose removal is so considered, present at
          the commencement of the meeting.
        4. No member shall be allowed to take part in an election for election as a Committee member if such a member is doing so directly or indirectly in
          the name of a political party, union, pressure group or cultural or religious organisation. If a member was elected with the support of any such
          organisation the same removal procedure will apply as stated above with reference to a member who has canvassed for his/her election.
      1. The members of the PAA shall be entitled to nominate persons out of the 14 (fourteen) members so elected to the committee to hold office as
        Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer respectfully until such next annual meeting. Each such nominee shall be both proposed and
        seconded and shall accept such nomination before he/she shall be regarded as a candidate for such office;
        1. If there is only on candidate for any of such offices he/she shall be deemed to have been unanimously elected but if there be more than one
          candidate for such office voting shall forthwith take place and the candidate receiving the greatest or greater number of votes shall be deemed to
          have been elected. If there be an equality of votes the successful candidate shall be determined by the drawing of a lot;
        2. At a Committee meeting 6 (six) members shall be required to form a quorum;
        3. The Committee may from time to time co-opt members to serve on the Committee.
        4. The Committee may from time to time co-opt a representative from the associate members to attend Comittee Meetings. Such co-opted member
          shall have the right to vote on all matters pertaining to associate members. The Chairman’s ruling as to what shall constitute a matter pertaining to
          associate members shall be final.
      2. Each Committee shall hold office for only one year but the retiring members shall be eligible for re-election provided that if the Association fails at the
        annual meeting in any year to elect a new committee the retiring committee shall forthwith convene a further General Meeting for the purpose of
        holding such election and pending the holding of such further meeting shall continue in office. If no new Committee is elected at such further meeting
        or at an adjournment thereof the retiring committee shall be deemed to have been re-elected for a further year and the retiring officers shall continue
        to hold the same office for such further year.
      3. All nominations for the Committee shall be in writing and forwarded with the nominee’s acceptance to the Secretary not less than 7 (seven) days
        before the date of the Annual General Meeting, and the names of the persons nominated shall be notified to members not less than 3 (three) days
        before the date of the meeting;
      4. In the event of any vacancy or vacancies occurring on the Committee or among the officers of the PAA the remaining of members of the PAA shall
        have the power to fill any such vacancy or vacancies, provided, however, that at that time there be sufficient remaining members of the committee
        to constitute a quorum. The member or officer so elected shall hold office on the same terms as the member whose place he/she takes and shall
        serve only until the next Annual General Meeting. If the remaining members of the Committee do not constitute a quorum they shall have no power to
        fill vacancies on the committee and may only function until such time as a General Meeting to fill the vacancies can be convened. It shall be the duty
        of such remaining members to convene such General Meeting at the earliest possible date;
      5. Any member of the committee (including an officer of the PAA) may be removed from his/her office as such by a resolution passed by a majority of
        two- thirds of the members present at a General Meeting of the PAA called for such purpose.
    8. . POWER AND DUTIES OF THE COMMITTEE: The Committee shall conduct all the affairs of the PAA and be entitled to do all matters and things not specially required to be done at a General Meeting or not expressly required to be otherwise performed. Without limiting their rights of management, the Committee shall have the following special powers:
      1. To convene meetings;
      2. To appoint, remove and determine the duties, salaries or remuneration of the employees;
      3. To hold and have the custody and control of the funds and other property of the PAA;
      4. To open a banking account which shall be operated on by the joint signatures of any 2 (two) of the following officers, namely – The Chairman,
        Vice-Chairman, Treasurer and Secretary for the time being;
      5. To appoint sub-committees and delegate any of its powers to such sub-committees;
      6. Subject to the constitution for the time being in force to frame and promulgate regulations for the conduct of the business of the PAA and to do all
        other things that it may consider conducive to the interest or good management of the PAA or the promotion of its objects;
      7. The Committee may direct and conduct any enquiry into any complaint received regarding a member’s alleged conduct contrary to the code of
        conduct;
      8. Any such member or number of members of the Committee or any other person so co-opted and or appointed may conduct the investigation. Any
        member of the PAA subjected to such enquiry is compelled to, on demand submit all documentation and information required by the committee.
    9. MEETINGS:
      1. Unless otherwise decided by the Committee, there shall be held monthly meetings of the members of the PAA of which at least 7 (seven) days notice
        shall be given. The Committee shall have full power and authority at any time to call special meetings of the members of the PAA of which at least 7
        (seven) days notice shall be given;
      2. An Annual General Meeting shall be held not later than the 31st October in each and every year, at which the election of the Committee shall take
        place and the report of the Committee together with the balance sheet and account shall be presented;
      3. Notice convening the annual General Meeting shall be given to members not less than 20 (twenty) calendar days before such meeting;
      4. When requested by not less than twelve members the Committee shall convene a special General Meeting to consider the matters desired by the
        requisition, which meeting shall be upon not less than 7 (seven) days notice, and shall state the purpose of the meeting, and such special meeting
        shall be held within 20 (twenty) days from the date of requisition;
      5. A quorum of members shall be not less than 10 (ten) of the members of the membership roll of the PAA. If within a quarter of an hour from the time
        appointed for the meeting a quorum is not present, the meeting, if convened upon requisition of members, shall be dissolved. In any other case it shall
        stand adjourned to a day not earlier than 7 (seven) days and not later than 20 (twenty) days after the date of the meeting and if at such adjourned
        meeting a quorum is not present within a quarter of an hour from the time appointed for the meeting, the members present shall be a quorum. Where
        a meeting has been adjourned as aforesaid written notice shall forthwith be given to members of the date, time and place to which the meeting has
        been adjourned and the matter before the meeting when it was adjourned;
      6. Associate members shall be entitled to attend all meeting of members, but shall be obliged to retire therefrom when called upon to do so by the
        Chairman;
      7. All notices referred to in this paragraph shall be sent in writing via electronic mail.
    10. DEFAULTERS: Any member whose subscription is in arrear for a period of 6 (six) months and who shall not thereafter pay such subscription within 14 (fourteen) days of the posting to him of a written request for payment, may be removed from the list of members by the Committee.
    11. RESIGNATION: Any member desiring to resign from the Association may do so on giving notice in writing to the Secretary but such person shall remain liable for any subscription or subscriptions which fall due prior to the date of such resignation.
    12. VOTING:
      1. Every member of the PAA, not being an Associate member, present at a meeting and not in arrear with his/her subscriptions, shall have one vote. No
        voting by proxy shall be permitted. In the event of an equality of votes at any meeting including an Annual General Meeting, a special general
        meeting, a meeting of the Executive Committee, or a meeting of a subcommittee the Chairman shall have a casting vote as well as a deliberate
        vote;
      2. The majority at any meeting may demand that voting be by ballot.
    13. BODY CORPORATE: The Association shall be a body corporate, shall have perpetual succession, shall own all its property in its own name as distinct from its members, may sue or be sued in any competent Court of Law in the name of the PAA and shall not carry on any business that has for its object the acquisition of gain by the PAA.
    14. AMENDMENTS: The Constitution may be amended, altered or added to at any Annual General Meeting or any General Meeting specifically called for such purpose. Any such alterations or additions must be approved by two-thirds pf the members present as such meeting. No proposed alteration or amendment shall be considered at any such meeting unless the proposed amendment or alteration has been notified to members in writing not less than 2 (two) weeks before the date of the meeting.
    15. LIABILITY: The liability of a member for the obligations of the Society shall be limited to the amount of his/her unpaid subscriptions.
    16. INTERPRETATION OF RULES: In case of doubt as to the meaning or interpretation of this Constitution, and any rules or codes framed thereunder the Committee shall be the arbiter, and their decision shall be binding upon members, subject to an appeal to a General Meeting.
    17. DISCIPLINARY POWERS:
      1. The Committee may find a member guilty of unethical and/or unseemly conduct which is contrary to the code of conduct and may:
        1. refer the complaint to the Law Society or any subsequent statutory body governing members for investigation;
          and or
      2. issue a warning;

and or

      1. enter into discussion with the relevant parties in order to try to reconcile the parties;

and or

      1. give directives to resolve any problems;

and or

      1. suspend the member for a specified period;

and or

    1. terminate the member’s membership
  1. Every member will be entitled to display the emblem of the PAA on its letterhead and other material subject to any directive of the Committee and/or
    directives of the Committee;
  2. Every member is compelled to subject him or herself to the code of conduct and to sign the code of conduct on request, failing which the
    membership of such member shall be terminated. Should new proposed members refuse to sign the code of conduct their membership will not be
    accepted;
  3. Every member indemnifies the PAA, the Executive Committee thereof as well as any other member of the PAA or any other member which may be
    involved in the investigation or discussion as hereinbefore previously mentioned for any loss and/or damages whatsoever except damages caused
    intentionally or through gross negligence.

Adopted at the 66th Annual General Meeting of the Association held on 25 October 2012.