ARTICLES OF THE PEOPLE¡¯S REPUBLIC OF CHINA SECTION OF
THE INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY ATTORNEYS
1. The People¡¯s Republic of China Section (the Section) of the International Federation of Intellectual Property Attorneys (FICPI) is, for the purposes of registration, declared to consist of not more than one thousand (1,000) members.
2. The office of the Section will be situated in such place as the Council determines, the Council is entitled to appoint a Secretary General.
3. The rights and privileges of every member of the Section shall be personal to the member, and shall not be transferable or transmittable by the member¡¯s own act or by operation of law.
4. Members shall comprise every intellectual property practitioner who has been duly elected. Every candidate for election shall be of good repute, be an intellectual property practitioner entitled to practice before the Patent and Trade Marks Office of The People¡¯s Republic of China (China) and shall be in independent practice either alone or in partnership and shall not practise only on behalf of one client, or affiliated group of clients, to the exclusion of other clients.
ELECTION OF MEMBERS
5. Any person desirous of being elected a member of the Section must be proposed in writing, by a member of the Section. The proposal shall be in the form prescribed by the Council and shall require the candidate to undertake to abide by the Articles of Section and By-Laws of the Section.
6. The proposal shall be submitted to the Secretariat, which shall investigate the qualifications of the candidate. If the Council approves of the qualifications of the candidate, the Chief or Secretary General shall advise the Secretary General of FICPI seeking ratification of the Executive Committee of FICPI.
7. On ratification by the Executive Committee of FICPI, and subject to the payment of appropriated fees, the candidate shall be deemed elected a member of the Section.
8. If the Council does not approve of the qualifications of the candidate, the candidate shall be notified to that effect, and an opportunity given to the candidate to present a case to the Council. The Council shall then reconsider the application and decide accordingly.
REGISTER OF MEMBERS
9. A Register of members shall be kept under the charge of the Secretary or otherwise as the Council may direct, and in this Register shall be entered the full names and addresses of all members, together with the dates of their admission into the Section, and such other particulars as the Council may determine.
10. The Council shall prescribe the entrance fees and subscriptions payable by members and the time at which and the manner in which such fees and subscriptions shall be paid.
11. Any member whose subscription is in arrears for more than three months shall not be entitled to any privileges of membership.
SUSPENSION, EXPULSION, RESIGNATION AND
REINSTATEMENT OF MEMBERS
12. (a) The Council may by resolution suspend any member from the exercise of all rights and privileges of a member during such period as may be thought fit (not extending beyond the commencement of the next Special General Meeting) for any cause which shall in its opinion render such suspension necessary or expedient, provided that at least four Councillors shall be personally present at the meeting at which the suspension shall be resolved upon and provided further that such resolution shall be carried on the affirmative personal votes of at least four councillors or of at least three-fourths of councillors present at the meeting, whichever is the greater.
(b) No member shall be suspended unless the member has first been advised in writing by Council of the grounds upon which the member¡¯s suspension is proposed and has been afforded a period of not less than fourteen days to show cause, either personally or in writing, why the member should not be suspended.
13. (a) If it shall appear to the Council or shall be represented to the Council by a requisition in writing signed by three or more members, that there is reason to believe that any member has been guilty of conduct unworthy of a member or conduct which, in the absence of satisfactory explanation, would render that member unfit to remain a member, or that any member has committed a breach of any By-Law, the Council may send to that member a statement in writing of the conduct imputed to that member, and shall afford that member an opportunity of giving an explanation in writing or in person as that member may elect.
(b) If on the consideration of such explanation or in the absence of any explanation the Council shall be of opinion that the member ought to be expelled from the Section, such opinion shall be stated in the form of a report to be laid before a General Meeting, and the member shall be liable by resolution of such meeting to be expelled from the Section, and if such resolution be passed, the member shall thereupon cease to be a member thereof.
(c) The Council may in its discretion suspend from the exercise of all rights and privileges of membership, during such period as may be thought fit, any member whose estate shall have been declared bankrupt or insolvent.
(d) The Council may in its discretion terminate the membership of any member who does not actively practise or otherwise no longer possesses the qualifications which govern admission to membership.
(e) The Council may in its discretion reinstate to membership any member whose membership has been terminated under above paragraph (d).
14. Any member having made all payments to the Section which shall have become due, may resign from the Section.
15. If any member shall be in arrears in a subscription or levy for three months, and shall fail to pay the arrears within three months after notice has been sent to the member by the Secretary, the membership of that member may be terminated by the Council at any time afterwards, and the former member shall cease to have any rights as a member of the Section; but shall nevertheless continue to be liable to pay the arrears in subscription or levy due at the time of the membership was terminated; provided always that this Article shall not be construed to compel the Council to terminate any membership if it considers that the membership ought not to be terminated.
16. A person who has ceased to be a member may again become a member, either without special conditions, or subject to such special conditions as the Council may determine, and such special conditions may relate to the payment of past subscriptions or the doing of any act which the Council may determine such person should pay or do, provided that such act shall concern only the conduct or business of the person as a member or the member¡¯s relations with the Section.
MEETINGS OF THE SECTION
17. General Meetings of the Section shall be held at such time and place as the Council may determine provided that a General Meeting (or Special General Meeting) shall be held at least once in each calendar year.
18. Notices of every General Meeting stating the date and place of such meeting shall be sent to every member of the Section at least thirty (30) days prior to the date fixed for such meeting, and notices specifying the business to be transacted at such meeting, as well as the date and place thereof, shall be sent to all such members at least fourteen (14) days prior to such date and no business which has not been stated in the notice of business so sent shall be transacted at any such meeting; but the non-receipt by any member of notice of such meeting so sent to the member shall not invalidate the proceedings of such meeting.
19. (a) There shall be a Special General Meeting held within 12 months of a World Congress of FICPI. At least two (2) month¡¯s prior to the date of the Special General Meeting, notice shall be given to all members of the date and place of such meeting and calling for nominations for the positions of President, Secretary ordinary councillors.
(b) The business of the Special General Meeting shall be to receive and deliberate upon the report of the Council on the state of the Section including a statement of accounts, and to elect the President and Secretary and to fill the vacancies on the Council until the next Special General Meeting.
20. (a) All nominations for the positions of President, Secretary and ordinary councillors shall be received by the Secretary at least thirty (30) days prior to the date of the Special General Meeting.
(b) In the event of no nominations for a position or positions being received, then the Council shall nominate such persons as it deems fit to fill the vacancy or vacancies.
(c) Nominations must indicate the position or positions in respect of which the candidate is nominated and must be signed by at least two members and by the nominee or his/her agent.
(d) Subject to the operation of the next succeeding sub-section, should the candidate or candidates nominated for any position or positions be not more in number than the vacancies for that position or positions, the Chairman of the Special General Meeting shall declare the person or persons so nominated to be elected to that position or those positions.
(e) In the event of the number of nominations being in excess of the vacancy or one or more of the vacancies a secret ballot shall be held and the Secretary shall forward to each member entitled to vote a ballot paper, which ballot paper shall indicate the names of all of the candidates and the position or positions for which each candidate has been nominated.
(f) In voting each voter shall indicate the name of the preferred candidate.
Candidates found to be elected to a position shall thereupon be eliminated from the counting of votes for other positions.
(g) The candidates receiving the highest number of votes shall be considered to be duly elected.
(h) If in a ballot for any of the positions of President or Secretary or ordinary councillor an equal number of votes is obtained by two or more candidates, the candidate to assume the office shall be decided by lot.
21. Prior to the commencement of balloting for the President, Secretary and ordinary councillors, the meeting shall choose two or more competent members as scrutineers, who shall receive the votes. The ballot shall remain open for one half hour.
PROCEEDINGS AT MEETINGS
22. All members are entitled to be present at every General Meeting.
23. One quarter of these members personally present or represented by proxy shall constitute a quorum for the purpose of any General Meeting.
24. If within thirty minutes after the time fixed for holding any meeting a quorum be not present the meeting shall be adjourned by the Chairman.
25. The President shall be Chairman at every meeting, and in the absence of the President a councillor shall take the chair; and if no councillor be present, or, if present, be unwilling to take the chair, the meeting shall elect a Chairman.
26. Members may be represented by proxy, provided that the proxy appointed be a member, and no one member shall hold more than five proxies. Members represented by proxy shall be considered as being present.
27. Votes may be given either personally or by proxy, as hereinafter mentioned.
28. Any member whose subscription is in arrears shall not be entitled to vote at any meeting of the Section.
29. Any decision of any meeting shall be ascertained by a show of hands by members entitled to vote. In case of equality of votes, the Chairman shall have a second or casting vote.
30. Resolutions passed at a General Meeting concerning alterations either to the Articles or By-Laws, or the direction or management of the affairs of the Section, shall only be effective provided they are carried on the affirmative votes of at least three-fourths (3/4) of the members voting, and provided always that at least one-half (1/2) of the members on the roll of the Section and entitled to vote, shall vote either personally or by proxy.
COUNCIL AND OFFICERS
31. The affairs of the Section shall be managed by a Council. The Council shall be elected from members, and shall consist of one Chief, up to 4 Deputy Chiefs and the Immediate Past Chief, who together form the Council of the Section and each of whom are a councillor of the Section.
32. The Chief and Deputy Chief of the Section shall be respectively Chief and Deputy Chief of the Council.
33. The Council may fill by appointment an extraordinary or casual vacancy in the Council (including any casual vacancy in the office of President or Secretary).
THE FUNDS OF THE SECTION
34. All moneys belonging to the Section shall be deposited by the Council in a bank or banks selected by it on account and for the use of the Section, or otherwise invested and may be drawn upon as and when required under the direction of the Council.
All money paid or payable on account of the Section shall be approved by the Council. The Council may authorise the Secretary to attend to payment of expenses incurred in and deemed by Council to be routine day-to-day operations of the Section and such payments may be made in advance of approval of the Council.
35. It shall be the duty of the Secretary, under the direction of the Council, to conduct the correspondence of the Section; to take minutes of the proceedings of meetings of the Section and Council; to read the minutes of the preceding meeting and all communications that may be ordered to be read by him; to superintend the publication of such papers, journal or other publication, as the Council may direct; to maintain a Register of members and keep the Secretary General of FICPI informed thereof; to direct the collection of the subscriptions and the preparations of the account of the expenditure of the funds; and to present all accounts to the Council for inspection and approval; to keep the Secretary General of FICPI informed of the affairs of the Section and to provide him with copies of Minutes of the Meetings of the Section; and to generally conduct the ordinary business of the Section.
POWERS AND PROCEDURE FOR COUNCIL
36. The Council shall meet as often as the business of the Section may require and may regulate its own mode of procedure. Three councillors personally present shall form a quorum. The Council may appoint Committees for special purposes to report to the Council.
37. All questions, unless otherwise specially provided, shall be decided in the Council by vote, but at the desire expressed by any two councillors present, the determination of any subject shall be postponed to the succeeding meeting, but there shall be no further postponement of such determination unless the Council otherwise decides.
38. A Statement of the Funds of the Section and of the Income and Expenditure during the past year terminating on the 31st December shall be made under the direction of the Council.
39. The Council shall present a report to each General Meeting.
40. The Council shall appoint from its numbers a Delegate and a Sub-Delegate to represent the Section on the Executive Committee of FICPI and to attend meetings of the Executive Committee. The Delegate and in the absence of the Delegate the Sub-Delegate shall be authorized to speak on behalf of the Section and to vote in accordance with directions given by Council. Such appointments may be terminated by Council at any time and shall terminate at the time of a Special General Meeting.
41. No act done by the Council, whether ultra vires or not, which shall receive the sanction of the members of the Section in General Meeting, shall be afterwards impeached by any member of the Section on any ground whatsoever, but shall be deemed to be an act of the Section.
OBLIGATIONS OF MEMBERS
42. Where any matter herein specified is in conflict with the Statutes and Regulations of FICPI, the Statutes and Regulations of FICPI shall prevail. Members shall conform with and act within the Statues and Regulations of FICPI, as they may be amended or modified from time to time. A member is expected to act within the spirit as well as the letter of the various matters set out therein.
43. No member shall, except through the Bureau of FICPI or the Council of the Section, approach a Minister, officers of any other department or International Authority or Body concerning any legislation or regulations relating to industrial or intellectual property or to the practice thereunder or as to any amendment thereof unless it is made clear that such approach is not in his/her capacity as a member of the Section.
44. No member practising in partnership with any person not a member, shall use any word, letters or symbols which in any way suggest or indicate that all the members of the firm are members of FICPI.