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(Effective December 16th, 1976)



     The name of this organization shall be “THE SOCIETY OF TRIAL LAWYERS”.

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     The object of this Society is to foster and encourage a spirit of loyalty and fraternity among the trial lawyers; to promote closer relationship between these lawyers to the end that they become mutually helpful to one another and to further their common interests; to foster and encourage high ethical standards in the trial of cases.

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     Section 1. Membership in the Society shall be restricted to lawyers who are skilled and experienced in the courts, regardless of their field of practice.

     Section 2. The membership in the Society shall be divided into five classes:

               (a)  Active Members.  All members other than Honorary, Non-resident, or Inactive members, who are and remain in good standing in the Society, shall be known as Active members.

               (b)  Privileged Members.  Whenever any Active member of the Society has been a member in good standing for fifteen consecutive years, the member shall automatically become a Privileged member, retaining all the rights and privileges of Active membership.

               (c)  Honorary Members.  Any lawyer who has been actively engaged in the trial of cases whose standing in the profession is pre-eminent, or who has become distinguished in the public service, may be elected an Honorary member of the Society.  If any Active or Privileged member of the Society shall become a judge of any court of record, such member may, by action of the Board of Directors, be taken from the Active or Privileged membership list and made an Honorary member of the Society.  Whenever any Honorary member shall cease to be a judge of record, they shall be restored to the list from which their name was taken.

               (d)  Non-Resident Members.  Any Active or Privileged member of the Society upon removing their place of residence from the State of Illinois may on application to, and pursuant to the action of the Board of Directors, be classified as a Non-resident member.

               (e)  Inactive Members.  Active and Privileged members may, on their own motion petition the Board of Directors to be transferred to Inactive status.

     Section 3. Qualifications for New Members

               (a) Only lawyers who are licensed to practice law in the State of Illinois, who are currently engaged in spending a major portion of their professional activities in the trial of cases, who have engaged in trial practice for at least ten years prior to their nomination to memberships, and who meet the qualification requirements which from time to time are established by the Membership Committee, shall be eligible for Active membership in the Society.

               (b) Nomination for membership shall be in writing to the Membership Committee under such regulations as the Membership Committee may from time to time prescribe; and upon consideration and recommendation of the Membership Committee, the names of the nominees shall be placed upon the notices of the next regular meeting of the Society. When elected by the Membership Committee, the names shall be placed on the membership list and reported to the Society at its next regular meeting, but no person shall be elected a member of the Society excepting by the unanimous vote of the members (not less than five) present at a meeting of the Membership Committee.

               (c) The Membership Committee shall satisfy itself as to the qualifications of the candidates for membership, including matters pertaining to their competency and integrity.

     Section 4. The number of Active members shall not at any time exceed 250.

     Section 5. honorary, Non-resident Inactive and Privileged members shall not be included in any quota considerations within the Society.

     Section 6. Only Active and Privileged members shall be eligible to vote or hold office in the Society. Honorary, Non-resident and Inactive members may attend and participate in all regular and special meetings of the Society, but shall be ineligible to vote or hold office.

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     Section 1. The affairs of the Society shall be managed, conducted, and controlled by its officers, who will consist of the President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer; together with Six Directors, three of whom shall be elected annually to hold office for a period of two years, and who together with three other director and the officer, shall constitute the Board of Directors of the Society. The retiring President shall serve as an ex-officio director for one year following the expiration of his term of office, and shall have the right to vote.

     Section 2. No director shall be eligible for reelection until one year after the expiration of his two year term. Only members in good standing at the time of the annual business meeting shall be eligible for election to any office.

     Section 3. The Board of Directors shall constitute the Membership Committee.

     Section 4. Any vacancies occurring on the Board of Directors shall be filled at the next annual election of the Society, or at a special election to be called by the remaining members of the Board of Directors, who shall then submit appropriate nominations for the vacancy to be filled at the special election.

     Section 5. The annual election shall be held at the first regular meeting in September of each year hereafter.

     Section 6. The Board of Directors shall meet at any time at the call of the President or by a petition signed by any three members of the Board.

     Section 7. The President and any two members of the Board shall constitute a quorum; otherwise four members of the Board shall be necessary for a quorum.

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Official Year

     The official year of the Society which shall govern the terms of the officers and directors and the fiscal affairs of the Society, shall begin at the first annual meeting in September of each year.

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Duties of Officers

     Section 1. It shall be the duty of the President to preside at all meetings of the Society and to perform such other duties as usually belong to his office. The President shall be ex-officio a member of all committees.

     Section 2. It shall be the duty of the Vice President to preside in the absence of the President and to perform in the absence of the President and to perform all the duties appropriate to his office.

     Section 3. The Secretary shall collect all dues of the Society, shall have custody of all books and papers of the Society.

     Section 4. The Treasurer shall collect all dues of the members and all monies due or coming to the Society and shall disburse the funds of the Society under the direction of the President.

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Nominations and Elections

     Section 1. At the first regular meeting of the Society in September of each year hereafter, there shall be elected a Treasurer and three members of the Board of Directors.

     Section 2. The President shall, at his earliest convenience after May 1st of each year, appoint a Nominating Committee of five members to nominate candidates for the office of Treasurer and for the three expiring terms of the Board of Directors of the Society. Two member of the Nominating Committee shall be selected from among the members of the Society at large and the remaining three, including the chairman who shall be designated by the President, shall be selected from among the members of the Board of Directors. No member of the Nominating Committee shall be eligible to be nominated by the Committee as a candidate for any office or directorship vacancy being considered by the Committee. The secretary shall forthwith after appointment notify the membership of the Society as to the names of the Nominating Committee members so as to provide opportunity for members to communicate names of members to the Nominating Committee for consideration.

     Section 3. The Nominating Committee shall thereafter meet and file a written report of its nominations with the Secretary who, in turn, shall publish the names of the nominees of the Nominating Committee to the membership at least fifteen days prior to the September meeting. Thereafter any ten active or privileged members may nominate by petition any active or privileged members for said offices, providing that the candidate will serve if elected, and that such nomination is filed with the Secretary at least five days prior to the September meeting. No nominations shall be made from the floor, unless by a vote of not less than two-thirds of the members entitled to vote in attendance at the annual meeting, a resolution providing that floor nominations be permitted upon that specific occasion, is passed.

     Section 4. In the event of a contest for any elective office, a secret ballot shall be taken. A majority of the votes cast will be decisive.

     Section 5. No proxy voting will be allowed.

     Section 6. Immediately upon the election of a Treasurer at an annual meeting in accordance with the procedure outlined in Sections 2 and 3 hereof, the persons who shall have served as Treasurer, Secretary and Vice President for the period of time immediately preceding such election, shall automatically become respectively the Secretary, Vice President and President of the Society. Thereupon the term of the person serving as President preceding such election shall automatically terminate.

     The Board of Directors shall appoint the immediate past Treasurer to the office of Secretary, the immediate past Secretary to the office of Vice President, and the immediate past Vice President to the office of President. In the event that any of these appointments cannot be filled for any reason, the Board of Directors shall reappoint as necessary to fill the void, by upgrading each office in accordance with this order, and call for a special election to elect a new Treasurer for the Society, at which time the Board shall submit appropriate nominations for the created vacancies.

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Dues and Funds

     Section 1.

               (a) All active and privileged members of the Society are required to pay initiation fees, dues and charges as determined by the Board of Directors from time to time. All honorary, non-resident and inactive members are required to pay any fees and charges incurred by their participation in any meetings and events of the Society.

               (b) A dues statement shall be mailed by the Treasurer on or before the fifteenth day of October of each year to every member at his last known office address. All dues are payable on the thirtieth day of November of each year.

    Section 2. The receipts from dues and miscellaneous sources shall be known as the current fund and shall be used for the current expenses of the Society.

    Section 3. The Treasurer shall report in writing annually to the Society, the financial condition of the Society.

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Suspension and Termination of Membership: Unexplained Absence from Meetings

    Section 1. Failure of any member to pay his initiation fee within six months from date of his induction, shall automatically terminate his membership, and his name shall be removed from the membership roll.

    Section 2. Any member who fails to pay his dues and charges as provided elsewhere herein, within six months from the due date, automatically will become a suspended member.

    Section 3. A suspended member may not hold office or any position in the Society, serve as a member of any committee, or attend any meeting of the Society, receive any notice, or other communications, or have any vote: nor may be exercise any of the privileges of membership, nor shall his name be included in any roster of members published while he is suspended.

    Section 4. Upon failure of a member to pay his dues and charges within twelve months of the due date, his membership shall automatically terminate and his name shall be removed forthwith from the membership roster of the Society.

    Section 5. The Secretary shall notify a member of a prospective suspension or termination of his membership for non-payment of dues by written notice mailed to him at his last known office address, fifteen or more days prior to the date of prospective suspension or termination.

    Section 6. The right to terminate membership or to suspend a member is vested in the Board of Directors.

    Section 7. The Board of Directors, at its discretion and upon terms, may reinstate a suspended member to active membership. The Treasurer shall bill each suspended member the sum of Fifteen Dollars ($15.00) when reinstated to active membership.

    Section 8. Any active member of the Society who absents himself from three consecutive meetings of the Society without sending an explanation to the Secretary, to be adjudged satisfactory by the directors at their discretion, shall on motion of the Board of Directors, be automatically suspended.

    Should this member continue to absent himself from meetings for the entire official year of the Society, without a satisfactory explanation being submitted or acceptable to the Board of Directors, on motion of the Board his name shall be stricken from the membership roll.

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    A quorum shall consist of thirty members eligible to vote.

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Censure, Expulsion, and Discipline of Members

    Section 1. The right to censure, expel, call for the resignation of, or otherwise discipline any member of the Society shall be vested in the members of the Society.

    Section 2. Any member may be censured, expelled, or otherwise disciplined for misconduct in his relations to the Society or profession, or injurious or derogatory to the good order, dignity, peace, reputation, or interest of the Society, or inconsistent with its purposes.

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     These By-Laws may be amended from time to time by a vote of two-thirds of the members present at any regular meeting of the Society, provided that the proposed change or amendment to the said By-Laws shall have been presented and read at the regular meeting next preceding the meeting upon which the vote for the change or amendment is to be taken.