Constitution

Structure

The Association shall comprise eligible literary agencies, such literary agencies to be defined as Member Agencies. Member Agencies shall elect a Committee that shall be responsible for making and implementing day-to-day decisions in relation to the affairs of the Association and on its behalf. The Committee shall consist of seven Committee Members: four ‘Officers’, being a President, a Vice-President, a Secretary and a Treasurer, two ‘Ordinary Committee Members’ and the Retiring President (or sometimes an additional Ordinary Committee Member).

Committee Members and Officers shall be elected by majority vote of those present at the Annual Meetings of the Association and shall serve for two years on a voluntary unpaid basis with the exception of Ordinary Committee Members who shall serve for three years. The President may not serve two consecutive terms. The Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer may be re-elected to the Committee but not to the same office, and may not serve on the Committee for a consecutive term of more than six years unless elected to the position of President. The Ordinary Committee Members may only be re-elected for two consecutive terms if they are re-elected as Officers. No member may serve for more than six consecutive years, except in the case of a seventh year as Ex-Officio President.

All Committee Members and Officers shall be elected by written ballot by a majority vote of Member Agencies at each Annual Meeting of the Association; each Member Agency will have one vote. Unless expressly authorised at an Annual or Extraordinary Meeting of the Association, no two agents employed by the same Member Agency shall be elected to the Committee at the same time. Any agent of a Member Agency shall be eligible for election as President so long as s/he has been a full-time authors’ agent for not less than seven years, and any agent of a Member Agency shall be eligible for election as any other Officer on the Committee so long as s/he has been a full-time authors’ agent for not less than five years; such restrictions are to be subject to the discretion of the Committee.

In the event of the resignation, death or incapacity of the President mid-term, the Vice-President shall automatically become President and elections for Vice-President shall be held at the next meeting of the Association. Upon the resignation, death or incapacity of any other Committee Member(s) other than the President mid-term, election(s) shall be held at the next meeting of the Association.

The President, or in his/her absence the Vice-President, shall preside at all meetings of the Association. At the Annual Meeting of the Association, the President, or in his/her absence the Vice-President, shall present to the meeting a report of the activities of the Association during the year. This shall include a summary of matters recommended for action by the Association.

The Secretary shall give notice to Member Agencies in writing (which can include by email and which will include the agenda) of no less than two weeks of all meetings of the Association, keep and circulate to Members Agencies the minutes of such meetings, and conduct the correspondence and keep the records of the Association. Such records shall be passed on to the Secretary’s successor and other Committee Members shall also pass on relevant correspondence and documents to the Secretary within one month of leaving office.

The Treasurer shall keep the books of the Association, collect all dues, pay all outgoings, and render a proper annual account of the Association to the Annual Meeting.

The Constitution of the Association may only be amended by a three-quarter majority in a ballot of Member Agencies with a quorum being constituted by receipt of votes from not less than half the number of Member Agencies. Each Member Agency will have only one vote. Ballots may be held at any General Meeting, provided proper Notice of the meeting has been given to all Member Agencies,  and Member Agencies may also vote in writing to the President or Secretary within one week of the circulation of the minutes of such General Meeting. Any proposed changes to the Constitution shall be notified in writing to Member Agencies in advance of the General Meeting. Minor amendments to such proposed amendments may be proposed at said General Meeting. A minor amendment is one which does not materially alter the intended effect of the amendment. The results of the ballot will not be released until the end of one week following distribution of the minutes of the General Meeting. Agreed changes shall be confirmed in writing to all Member Agencies.

 

Membership

Membership of the Association shall be open to all authors’ agents. Any applicant for membership who does not technically qualify under the conditions set out may be accepted for full membership at the Committee’s discretion or may be given Observer status for no more than two General Meetings if such an applicant is approved by a majority of the full Committee. A prospective member may attend up to two General Meetings only as an Observer before deciding to seek membership or otherwise. Observer status shall not confer an automatic right to future full membership.

Any agency or individual independent agent actively engaged in representing authors and other individuals engaged in the profession of creating copyright works (‘clients’) shall be eligible for membership.

Applicants for membership must have a place of business within the United Kingdom, although exceptions may be made at the discretion of the Committee, and must be able to give evidence to the Committee of the fact that they carry on an authors’ agency business in the handling of literary rights which may also include drama, media, subsidiary and related rights.

An agency or agent who is also employed by publishers or purchasing principals, other than for selling rights, shall not be eligible for membership.

Applicants must undertake to the Committee that they have read and will abide by the Constitution and Code of Practice of the Association as published on the Association’s website and will link to the Code of Practice (and related Guidelines) on any marketing materials including their website which advertise their membership of the AAA.

Dues

The fee structure of the AAA is a tiered system, with the tiers defined according to the number of staff at each Member Agency:

1-3 staff: £300pa

4-9 staff: £500pa

10-19 staff: £750pa

20+ staff: £1000pa

For the purposes of this calculation a member of staff is anyone who works more than two days a week.

Annual fees are payable after the AGM in January, upon receipt of an invoice from the Treasurer.

Payment of the annual subscription shall constitute acceptance of the Association’s Constitution and Code of Practice.

 

Meetings of the Association

The Annual Meeting of the Association shall be held in January of each year. Ordinary Meetings of the Association shall usually be held in the months of March, June and September. Extraordinary Meetings of the Association may be called at any time by the President or on two weeks’ notice by no fewer than nine members. The Committee shall meet by arrangement and may also appoint special subcommittees of the Association to consider and report on particular questions of interest to members.