Membership: Criteria and Classes

Membership in the Chapter shall be comprised primarily of individuals engaged on a full-time basis in the management of legal organizations or as a consultant supporting legal organizations, as defined below, and shall consist of Regular and Associate Members as defined and provided for in these bylaws. Membership in the Chapter is not open to Business Partners who are engaged by legal and/or legal consultant organizations.

Section  1.  Regular Members.   Regular membership in the Chapter is limited to:

          A.           Legal administrators, regardless of the title by which that individual is recognized within his or her organization, engaged in the management of a legal organization. "Legal administrators" are persons who (i) exercise management responsibilities on a full-time basis or, if not full-time,  devote  at  least 75% of their working time to performing the management responsibilities of their position; (ii) manage  others or manage an important function that renders high-level technical or other specialized services  to the organization; (iii) occupy a position that involves the exercise of independent judgment without close dally supervision; and (iv) are employed in a position that is or  is eligible to  be classified  as  exempt,  by one or more "legal organizations" - such as a private law firm, legal  service  clinic,  corporate  legal department, college or university legal department, governmental legal agency, court system, charitable legal agency, or some other organization that is primarily engaged in the practice of law. Eligible persons may perform all relevant management duties personally or, in the case of the delegation of such duties to subordinate staff or the contracting of any such duties to third parties, must retain responsibility for those duties.

In general, a "legal administrator"  is either (i) the principal administrator  in the organization,  (ii) the administrator/manager  of a branch office of the organization,  or (iii) someone  who  reports directly to the principal administrator  or  branch administrator  and has responsibility  for  one or  more of the organization's major functional  management or administrative  areas such as:   General  Management;  Financial Management;  Human Resources Management;  Systems  Management;  Facilities Management;  Marketing or Business  Development  Management;  Practice Management;  Management  of Training  and Development Activities;  Staff Supervision  and  Management;  and Management  of  Lawyer  Recruiting activities.

          B.           Practicing lawyers  who  have  the  principal  lawyer  executive  management  responsibility  in their  legal  organization  and  who  devote  no  less  than  75%  of  their  working  time  to  that  responsibility  and function. Individuals  potentially  meeting  this  criteria  would  include  the  managing  partner  of  a  private  law firm  or  the  chair  of  a  law  firm  executive  committee;  the  General  Counsel  in  a  corporate  legal  department; and  the  head  of  a  governmental  agency  legal  department  such  as  a  state  Deputy  Attorney  General  with agency  administration 

          C.          Unemployed legal  administrators  who  are  not  serving  as  business  partners and  who  have  met  the_ criteria  for  Regular  membership  are  eligible  to  continue  as  Regular  Members  until expiration  of  a  180-day  period  measured  from  the  date  on  which  they  are  no  longer  employed  as  legal administrators.  After  the  expiration  of  the  180-day  period,  unemployed  legal  administrators  are  eligible  to continue   as  Associate   Members   and  to   renew   as  Associate   Members   (other  eligibility   requirements   of Associate  membership  notwithstanding),  provided  such  legal  administrators  are  not  serving  as  business partners and are actively  seeking employment  as a  legal administrator and/or legal consultant.

          D.           Individuals who have been designated as "Life Members" by the Chapter Board of Directors. Life Members are those individuals who are a Past President of the Chapter. Life Members have all the rights and  privileges  of  Regular  membership,  but they  are  not  required to  pay    Those  Life  Members  who  are no  longer  employed  as  legal  administrators  and  do  not  meet the  criteria  for  Regular  membership  may  not hold elective or appointive office  but may serve as members of committees.

          E.           Consultants to the Legal Industry. A consultant is defined as an individual who does not provide goods, furniture, equipment, supplies, materials, software, technology, insurance, or legal industry services directly or through his/her company; or causes to be provided through a workforce of employees, or is employed by such an entity; unless the individual meets one or more of the following criteria:

1) an individual who is a recognized subject-matter expert within the legal community;

2) an individual whose primary service generally involves the sale of intellectual property, expert advice, coaching or assessment to legal organizations and who engages with multiple and changing clients;

3) an individual who performs ongoing day-to-day administrative functions for one or more companies or firms which would otherwise qualify the individual for Regular ALA membership despite who employs them, including a business partner;

4) an individual who is self-employed as a contractor or operating a self-owned business and performing day-to-day administrative roles for one or more companies or firms, which would otherwise render the person eligible for Regular ALA membership if an employer/employee relationship existed.

A consultant membership is bestowed upon an individual, not a company, and employees of business partner eligible companies are not considered consultants and are not eligible for consultant membership, unless: a) the individual is performing day-to-day administrative functions at a remote or third party location; or b) the individual is employed as a legal administrator in the corporate legal department of the business organization.

          F.           For purposes of membership eligibility, a business partner is generally an individual (or member of an organization) whose primary function is to market or sell products and/or services to members of the legal community.

          G.           Regular Members have all the rights and privileges of membership, including (except as provided in Article III(l)D., above) the right to hold elective or appointive office


Section 2. Associate Members. Associate membership in the Chapter shall be available to those individuals who are interested in legal administration and management, who do not meet the criteria for Regular membership, and who are either:

          A.           Practicing lawyers with an interest in law firm administration and management;

          B.           Individuals engaged  in  an  ongoing  employment-type   relationship  that  involves  providing continuing  management services  of the types described  in Article  III(l)A., above;

          C.           Retired Regular Members of the chapter who are not otherwise employed;

          D.           Unemployed legal administrators who have exhausted their eligibility for  Regular membership but meet the requirements of Associate membership under Article III(l)C., above;

          E.           Teachers of business, organizational management, law or law-related disciplines at institutions of higher learning, as well as deans with administrative and management responsibilities at such institutions;

          F.           Any part or full time student enrolled in any degree program at an accredited institution of higher or post-secondary learning, and who is not employed in a full-time exempt position, will be eligible for ALA student membership at the current student rate and for a maximum term of four years at which time membership status may be reviewed for continuation;

          G.           Bar association executives with management responsibilities of the type described in Article III(l)A., above; or

          H.           Other individuals not specifically excluded from membership who have and demonstrate an interest in the management of law firms and other legal organizations, and who do not qualify for Regular membership in the Chapter.

           I.           Associate Members may hold elective or appointive office in the Chapter. Other policies governing the participation of Associate Members in the Chapter, as well as the nature and extent of benefits accruing to Associate Members, shall be determined from time to time by the Chapter Board of Directors.