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.