CONSTITUTION OF THE LEGALTECH ASSOCIATION (UKLTA)

The UK LegalTech Association (UKLTA) was established in 2018 to create a new forum for maximising the positive impact of technology in the provision of legal services for the benefit of clients as well as legal service providers by furthering engagement with the whole legal, educational and technical market as well as consumers of the services.

UKLTA’s Mission and Objectives

The UKLTA mission is to form a community where legal professionals, technology providers and consumers of legal services can come together in order to help shape the future of legal services delivery collaboratively.

To Achieve this aim UKLTA members come together through:

  • Events and Demonstration days across the UK allowing law firms to get ‘hands-on’ with the latest technology, ask questions and understand how solutions can be applied to their business.
  • Online and offline events that enable law firms to come together and discuss best practice, with a particular focus on how technology can help.
  • Collaborative Groups to improve delivery of legal services. Each Group focuses on a specific challenge or area of law and may include clients and more generally consumers of legal services, and other professions such as accountants and auditors who can bring value to the Group.
  • Legal Technology Education in sessions delivered by members for legal professionals in order to help them better assess new technologies and how they fit with the delivery of legal services.
  • Engaging with the University sector in particular the law schools and taking advantage of any research competence and funding

Powers

UKLTA is a membership body funded by the fees of its members (individual, Company and Associate) and associated activities such as sponsored events. Leadership and Governance is provided by an Executive Committee of Directors (hereafter referred to as the Executive Board) elected by the Membership (including the Chair). Members of the Executive Board are also Directors of the Company and form the Board of the Company. UKLTA also has a Members Board for representing the interests of the diverse membership base to the UKLTA Executive Board.

Membership

UKLTA has three categories of membership – Individual, Company and Associate for each of which an annual membership fee is levied as per the current fee schedule.

Individual Membership

Individual membership is available to any party that is not part of a Company and has a legitimate interest in the mission of UKLTA and includes students. Individual members have the same voting rights as Company members.

Company Membership

Company Membership is available to technology companies, consultancies, “in house” teams and other companies that have a legitimate interest in delivering the mission of UKLTA. Company members have the same voting rights as Individual Members, and University Law Departments are treated as company members with respect to voting rights.

Where a Company is deemed by the Executive Committee to be part of a larger entity (for example a law firm which may have a smaller independent tech division, yet that division is clearly related to the larger entity) the membership fee due shall be that of the larger entity.

Associate Membership

Associate Membership is available to third sector organisations with an interest in the mission of UKLTA such as legal services regulators, professional bodies, trade bodies, charities, Government Departments, or training institutions. Such associate members will not have any voting rights but will have access to all events save any Executive or Member Board Meetings.

Equality and Diversity

The UKLTA has a strong and positive view of the promotion of equality amongst its members.

Applications

Applications for all categories of membership are considered by the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will take into account the views of its Members Board in relation to considerations of acceptance of membership. There are no rights of veto and the final decision rests with the Executive Committee.

Admission

Admission to all categories of membership is at the discretion of the Executive Committee. Once admitted, members may signify they are UKLTA members, but must not imply any UKLTA endorsement of policies, procedures, or products.

Termination of Membership

Members of the UKLTA must be active members and should attend 60% of all and any meetings and events in any given calendar year. If members are not deemed as active, or fail to follow the rules within the Articles and Memorandum of Association, or this Constitution, their membership can be terminated at the discretion of the Executive Committee.

The Executive Committee may also terminate the membership of any company or individual member should there be determination of winding up or bankruptcy. Membership may also be terminated should any member bring the Association into disrepute, be the subject of regulatory investigation or be seen to be behaving unprofessionally.

Management

UKLTA is run through the Executive Committee with input from the Members Board.

UKLTA Executive and Members Board

The UKLTA Executive Board Membership is constituted of five individuals who are elected by the membership. All five Executive Board members will be Directors of the Company. The Chairperson is appointed by the Directors. The initial Executive Board will be comprised of Matthew Pennington (Chairperson), Robert Hosier, Pippa Shepherd, Robyn Weatherley and Catriona Wolfenden for an initial term in office that will expire on 30th April 2023.

Members of the Executive Board and the Members Board must be fully paid up members in good standing at all times.

Members and prospective members of the Members Board may be invited to attend and observe Executive Board meetings at the Discretion of the Executive Board.

Directors will normally be appointed for 3 years in office and the Chairperson will be appointed for 3-year terms.

The Executive Board is responsible for the strategic direction of UKLTA, its budgets and any contracted outsourced services. The duties include:

  • The strategic direction of UKLTA taking account of the interests of its members and the Constitution
  • Overseeing the work of any externally contracted parties
  • Acting as cheque signatories, overseeing the finances of UKLTA, setting the budgets and ensuring the collection of annual subscriptions
  • Delegating specific activities to individual Executive or Members Board members as agreed
  • Attending Executive meetings and representing UKLTA at meetings with other organisations
  • Contributing to UKLTA media activity and event presentations
  • Ensuring sound financial management of UKLTA’s affairs
  • Setting the Annual Subscriptions for the different classes of membership

Elections for Chairperson and Directors who form the Executive Committee

An election is held in October each year with effect from October 2022, and the results announced at the AGM which is held in April each year. For the position of Director there will be an election every 3 year(s). The Chairperson is elected by the Directors every 3 year(s). Elected Directors take up office with effect from 1st May the following year.

Members of the Members Board who are fully paid up in good standing may nominate themselves and any number of candidates. Nominations may only be made for members who have completed at least one year as a member of the Members Board. All nominees should be aware that they have been nominated and confirm that they are willing to stand for election. If the member is an incorporated company / institution then only one person per member may be nominated.

Nominations are invited by a specified date and, when this date has passed, the list of nominees is then put to the membership of the Members Board for a vote. Each member of the Members Board may cast a vote for up to 5 Directors.

Election of the Directors will be made on the basis of the candidates receiving the highest number of votes.

The consecutive tenure of any Director (and thus the Chair) should not exceed 10 years (in total), without a rotation off for at least two years.

In the event of a Director resigning during his/her term of office a ballot of Members of the Members Board will be held as soon as possible thereafter to appoint a replacement. Directors will have the authority to co-opt a Member or Members to act as a Director(s) until such time as they can seek Member Board approval or hold a ballot.

Elections to the Members Board

An election is held in October each year for the Members Board. The Members Board shall be comprised of a maximum of 16 members.

Meetings

  • The Executive Board will meet at least 4 times a year and meetings may be physical or virtual.
  • The Members Board will meet at least 4 times a year and meetings may be physical or virtual.
  • The Members Board meetings must have a minimum of seven members present to be quorate.
  • A schedule of meetings for the succeeding calendar year will be circulated by the 31st October each year.

Annual General Meeting

UKLTA will hold an Annual General Meeting (AGM) in April each year. All fully paid up members of the Association are entitled to attend the AGM. The meeting considers the annual accounts, is notified of the annual subscriptions for the succeeding year, discusses and agrees any amendments to the Constitution and appoints auditors for the coming year (or agrees not to appoint an auditor).

Finances

The financial year for UKLTA runs from November 1st to October 31st and each Member shall pay a subscription, which is set annually by the Executive Board in an amount sufficient to meet the objectives of UKLTA for the ensuing year.

The membership subscription fee will be invoiced at the point of joining the Association and thereafter on the anniversary of the joining date. Invoices are due for payment within 30 days. Details of the current fees are on the website. If payment has not been received within 30 days, and the member has not been able to offer a satisfactory explanation as to when it may be expected, that member’s membership may be temporarily suspended until payment is received. If payment is then not received, membership will be terminated at the discretion of the Executive Board, who may again at their discretion refuse re-entry.

UKLTA presents draft financial statements for each year for approval at the AGM. The financial statements will be subject to independent financial review by a suitably qualified external party.

Revision of the Constitution

This Constitution shall be amended as necessary at the Annual General Meeting or, if necessary, at a meeting of the Executive Board , provided that at least 75% of the Executive Board members present at the meeting (or in writing if not present) vote in favour of amendments of which at least 14 days’ prior notice has been given.

This version was approved at the Executive Committee meeting on 29/09/2020.