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By-Laws

ARTICLE I
NAME AND PURPOSE

Section 1. This section shall be known as the Appellate Practice Section, The Florida Bar.

Section 2. The purpose of this section is to enhance the role and skills of Florida Bar members who are engaged in appellate practice, through study, continuing legal education, the dissemination of materials on matters of interest and concern to the membership, and the exchange of ideas and information among the membership of the section. It shall also be the purpose of the section to cooperate with other sections, to promote the objectives of The Florida Bar, and to encourage appellate practitioners to participate in The Florida Bar.

ARTICLE II
MEMBERSHIP AND DUES

Section 1. Regular Membership. Any member of The Florida Bar in good standing and interested in the purposes of this section is eligible for regular membership upon application and payment of this section's annual dues for regular membership. Any regular member who ceases to be a member of The Florida Bar shall no longer be a member of the section.

Section 2. Affiliate Membership. Law students and law professors who are not members of The Florida Bar are eligible for affiliate membership upon application and payment of this section's annual dues for affiliate membership. Affiliate members shall be non-voting members of the section.

Section 3. The amount of the dues for regular and affiliate memberships shall be set by the executive council. All dues shall be payable on or before the first day of July of each year.

ARTICLE III
OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COUNCIL

Section 1. The officers of the section shall be the chair, chair-elect, vice-chair, and secretary/treasurer.

Section 2. The officers, together with the immediate past chair, the editor of the section's newsletter, 22 members (comprising 1 attorney representative from each of Florida's 5 judicial districts, 1 judicial representative from each of Florida's 5 district courts of appeal, 1 judicial representative from the Supreme Court of Florida, 1 judicial representative from the United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, plus 10 at-large members) to be elected by the section or appointed by each judicial representative's respective court, as hereinafter provided, and any past chairs requesting appointment, as hereinafter provided, shall comprise the executive council. The president and president-elect of The Florida Bar shall be ex-officio members of the executive council.

ARTICLE IV
DUTIES AND POWER OF OFFICERS

Section 1. The chair (or successively, the chair-elect or vice-chair, in the absence of the chair) shall preside at all meetings of the section, and of the executive council. The chair shall schedule the meetings of the executive council in accordance with the provisions of these bylaws. The chair shall formulate and present at the annual meeting of the section a report of the work of the section for the preceding year. The chair shall appoint the chairs and members of all committees of the section who are to hold office during the chair's term. The chair shall plan and supervise the program of the section at the annual meeting of the section during the chair's term, subject to the directions and approval of the executive council. The chair shall oversee the performance of all activities of the section. The chair shall keep the executive council duly informed and carry out its decisions. The chair shall perform such other duties as usually pertain to the office of chair or as may be designated by the executive council. The chair shall be an ex-officio member of each committee of the section.

Section 2. The chair-elect shall, in consultation with the chair, arrange for the appointment of the chairs and members of all committees who are to hold office during the chair-elect's term as chair. The chair-elect shall aid the chair in the performance of the chair's responsibilities in such manner and to such extent as the chair may request. The chair-elect shall perform such further duties and have such further powers as usually pertain to the office of chair-elect or as may be designated by the executive council or the chair. The chair-elect shall be an ex-officio member of each committee of the section.

Section 3. The vice-chair shall be responsible for the procuring and publishing of suitable articles to advance the purpose of the section, in consultation with the chair of appropriate committees and other officers of the section. The vice-chair shall aid the chair and the chair-elect in the performance of their responsibilities in such manner and to such extent as either may request. The vice-chair shall perform such further duties and have such further powers as usually pertain to the office of vice-chair or as may be designated by the executive council or the chair. The vice-chair shall be an ex-officio member of each committee of the section.

Section 4. The secretary/treasurer shall consult with and assist the chair, chair-elect, and vice-chair of the section as to the work of the section generally, in such manner and to such extent as they may request. The secretary/treasurer shall be the custodian of all books, papers, documents, and other property of the section. The secretary/treasurer shall keep a true record of the proceedings of all meetings of the section and of the executive council, whether assembled or acting under submission. The secretary/treasurer shall assist the chair in the preparation of the section's annual report submitted in the spring of each year for publication in The Florida Bar Journal, describing the activities and plans of the section.

The secretary/treasurer shall also monitor all accounts, reports, and other documents prepared as to section funds, revenues, and expenditures to make certain that all accounts, reports, and other documents are accurate, and shall confer with employees of The Florida Bar in the proper disbursements of section funds. The secretary/treasurer shall report on the section's present and projected financial condition upon request of the chair or other members of the executive council. The secretary/treasurer shall serve as the chair of the website committee and shall supervise the development and maintenance of the section’s website to advance the purposes of the section. The secretary/treasurer, in conjunction with the chair, as authorized by the executive council, shall attend generally to the business of the section. The secretary/treasurer shall be an ex-officio member of each committee of the section.

ARTICLE V
DUTIES AND POWER OF EXECUTIVE COUNCIL

Section 1. The executive council shall have general supervision and control of the affairs of the section, subject to the provisions of the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, the policies adopted by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, and these bylaws.

Section 2. The executive council shall authorize all commitments or contracts that entail the payment of money, and it shall authorize the expenditures of all section funds.

Section 3. Except where otherwise provided in these bylaws, all binding action of the executive council shall be by majority vote of those present and voting, provided that a quorum shall consist of not less than a majority of the voting members. Members of the executive council shall vote in person.

Section 4. Upon taking the office of chair, the chair shall schedule at least 3 meetings of the executive council annually, and the executive council shall meet at least annually and as often in addition as the reasonable needs of the section require. Advance written notice of no less than 10 days of meetings other than the 3 aforementioned meetings shall be given to all members of the executive council by either the chair or the secretary/treasurer.

Section 5. The provisions of section 3 notwithstanding, the chair and at least 2 other officers of the section may, and upon the written request of a majority of the executive council shall, submit or cause to be submitted in writing, including by e-mail, to each member of the executive council, any proposition upon which the executive council may be authorized to act, and the members of the executive council may vote upon such proposition so submitted by communicating their vote, in writing, including by e-mail, to the secretary/treasurer, who shall record in the minutes of the section the text of the proposition so submitted, that it was submitted to all members of the executive council in writing, including by e-mail, without a meeting, and the vote thereon. Binding action of the executive council shall be by majority of the executive council.

ARTICLE VI
MEETINGS OF THE SECTION

Section 1. The section shall hold an annual meeting of the section, at a time and location as may be arranged by the executive council, and with such program and order of business as may be arranged by the executive council.

Section 2. Special meetings of the section may be called by the chair, upon approval of the executive council, at such time and place as the executive council shall determine. Reasonable notice of any such special meeting shall be given to all members of the section.

Section 3. The members of the section present at any meeting shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

Section 4. All binding action of the section shall be by majority vote of the members present.

Section 5. The procedure of all meetings of this section shall be governed by Robert's Rules of Order Revised unless otherwise provided herein.

Section 6. The section hereby delegates to the executive council authority to act for the section as to all matters whatsoever that may come before the section during intervals between the annual and special meetings of the section.

Section 7. Unless otherwise specified herein, the executive council may direct that a matter be submitted in writing, including by e-mail, to the members of the section for a vote. The members of the section may vote upon such proposition so submitted by communicating their vote, in writing, including by e-mail, within a reasonable time prescribed by the executive council, to the secretary/treasurer who shall record in the minutes of the section the text of the proposition so submitted, that it was submitted to all members of the section in writing, including by e-mail, without a meeting, and the vote thereon. Binding action of the section shall be by a majority of the votes received in accordance with the provisions of these bylaws.

ARTICLE VII
ELECTIONS

Section 1. The officers, other than the chair, shall be elected at the annual meeting of the section. They shall serve 1-year terms, beginning at the adjournment of the annual meeting at which they are elected, or until their successors have been elected and qualified. The chair-elect shall become chair upon adjournment of the annual meeting concluding the chair-elect's term as chair-elect.

Section 2. Five members of the executive council, other than the officers of the section, the judicial representatives, and past chairs, shall be elected at the annual meeting of the section. They shall serve 3-year terms, beginning at the adjournment of the annual meeting at which they are elected and qualified.

  1. Judicial representatives from Florida district courts of appeal, from the Supreme Court of Florida, and from the United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, shall be appointed by the chief judge or justice, as applicable, of each respective court. The judicial representatives shall serve 3-year terms, beginning at the adjournment of the annual meeting at which their appointments are presented.
  2. Nothing in these bylaws shall be construed as precluding a member of the section who is also a member of the judiciary from seeking an elected position on the executive council or as an officer.
  3. Past chairs, other than the immediate past chair, shall serve 1-year terms as members of the executive council upon written request provided to the chair prior to adjournment of the annual meeting. Past chairs may be reappointed to service on the executive council from year to year upon repeated written request as provided above. If any past chair serving as a member of the executive council shall fail to attend 2 executive council meetings in any fiscal year, the member shall be subject to immediate removal from the executive council, pursuant to action by vote of the other members of the executive council.

Section 3. Before each annual meeting of the section, the chair shall appoint a nominating committee of not less than 3 members of the section, which committee shall make and report nominations to the section for such officers and executive council members as are scheduled to be elected at the annual meeting. No nominee shall be reported to the section who has not agreed to serve if elected. Other nominations for the same offices may be made from the floor at the annual meeting, provided the nominee has agreed to serve if elected.

ARTICLE VIII
SUCCESSION OF OFFICERS AND VACANCIES

Section 1. The chair-elect shall, unless prevented by death or disability or unless having declined to act as chair-elect, automatically assume the office of chair at the end of the annual meeting concluding the chair elect's term as chair-elect. The chair shall serve a term of 1 year.

Section 2. In the event of the death, disability or refusal of the chair to serve a full term, the chair-elect shall perform the duties of the chair for the remainder of the chair's term or disability, as the case may be.

Section 3. In the event of the death, disability or refusal of the vice-chair to serve a full term, the secretary/treasurer shall perform the duties of the vice-chair for the remainder of the vice-chair's term or disability, as the case may be.

Section 4. In the event of the death, disability or refusal of the vice-chair to serve a full term, the secretary/treasurer shall perform the duties of the vice-chair for the remainder of the vice-chair's term or disability, as the case may be.

Section 5. The executive council, during the interim between annual meetings of the section, may fill vacancies in its own membership or in the office of secretary/treasurer. Members of the executive council and officers so selected shall serve until the close of the next annual meeting of the section. The remainder of any executive council member's unexpired term shall be filled by election at the next annual meeting, as provided in Article VII of these bylaws.

Section 6. If any elected member of the executive council shall fail to attend 2 executive council meetings in any fiscal year, the member shall be subject to immediate removal from office, pursuant to action by vote of the other members of the executive council, and the vacancy shall be filled according to the applicable provisions of these bylaws.

Section 7. At the end of the chair's term in office as chair, the immediate past chair shall serve as a member of the executive council for a term of 1 year.

ARTICLE IX
COMMITTEES

Section 1. Except as otherwise provided in these bylaws, all committees shall be appointed in accordance with the provisions of Article IV, and any member of the section, including officers and members of the executive council, may serve as chair or as a member of a committee.

Section 2. Standing committees of the section shall be:
  1. Nominating;
  2. Continuing Legal Education;
  3. Programs;
  4. Legislation;
  5. Publications; and
  6. Website.

Any of these committees may work jointly as the need to do so may from time to time arise.

Section 3. Other committees, intended to be created for a period of 1 year or more, shall be identified as annual committees. Annual committees may be created upon motion by any member of the executive council, second, and a majority vote.

The term of each annual committee shall commence immediately upon creation and shall be deemed to automatically renew for each following section year until deleted. An annual committee may be deleted by the same 2 methods by which an annual committee may be created, as described above.

Section 4. All committees not identified as standing or annual committees shall be created as special committees, which shall be appointed by the chair in the chair’s discretion as the need to do so may from time to time arise. If it appears that a special committee’s term will continue beyond the term of the chair creating said committee, then it shall be submitted to the executive council of the section by the incoming chair for approval as an annual committee in the manner set forth above.

ARTICLE X
LEGISLATIVE POLICIES

Section 1. The section may be involved in legislative (or judicial or administrative) action that is significant to the judiciary, the administration of justice, the fundamental legal rights of the public or the interests of the section or its programs or functions, so long as that involvement is consistent with the policies outlined in these bylaws and consistent with the policies promulgated by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar.

Section 2. Any legislative, judicial, or administrative position of the section ("Legislative Position") must be adopted in accordance with the provisions of this article. During the course of the section's activities, and as promptly as possible, the chair or the chair's designee shall notify the executive director of The Florida Bar of any new or current section-approved legislative positions. In July of each year, prior to the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, the chair of the section or the chair's designee shall notify the executive director of The Florida Bar of any new or current section approved legislative positions then in effect. Such legislative positions will be clearly identified as legislative positions of the section only, at all appropriate times before legislative bodies or its members, unless otherwise authorized by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar.

Section 3. The section's legislation committee shall be composed of the section officers and such members as may be appointed by the chair of the section, consistent with the standing policies of The Florida Bar Board of Governors. Whenever because of time constraints the executive council cannot meet to adopt a legislative position prior to the time when legislative (or judicial or administrative) action is expected or required, the legislation committee has the authority to adopt the legislative position of the section with respect to pending legislation. Any position that is thus taken must be reported to the executive council's next scheduled meeting and may be approved or rescinded in accordance with this policy.

Section 4.
  1. Any proposed legislative position and the recommendations of the initiating committee of the section will be made agenda items and copies will be affixed to the agenda for distribution to all executive council members at least 1 week prior to the executive council meeting. No proposed legislative position will be considered at the executive council meeting unless the section legislative committee or the section chair requests waiver of the rule and such waiver is approved by a vote of 2/3 of the members of the executive council present and voting. Legislative positions initiated by a committee of the section will be considered in the same manner as any other matter for which a decision is requested of executive council by a member of the executive council.
  2. The section's position on legislation not initiated by a committee of the section will be considered under the following procedure:
    1. The legislation committee will review all proposed legislative positions, and, subject to the approval of the section chair, the legislation committee has the discretion to remove any item of proposed legislation from consideration by the executive council if the legislation committee finds that such proposed legislative position is not concerned with a matter within this policy.
    2. All proposed legislative positions which the legislation committee decides should be considered by the executive council will be forwarded by the legislation committee chair to the chair of the section committee, which, in the opinion of the legislation committee chair, is most concerned with the subject matter of such proposed legislation. The legislation committee chair will request a written report from that committee, reporting the decision which the committee recommends to the executive council, and designating a contact person to confer with the chair of the legislation committee and the executive council.

Section 5. In order to adopt any proposed legislative position, the executive council, by a 2/3 vote of the members present, must find that the proposed legislative position is within the scope of these bylaws and within policies as may be adopted by the Board of Governors. In order to adopt any proposed legislative position, the executive council, by a majority vote of the members present, must also approve the substance of the legislative position presented. Any legislative position taken shall be in accordance with standing policies regarding legislative actions promulgated by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar. When time constraints with respect to legislative positions of the section require prompt action, the officers of the section may act in lieu of a vote of the executive council. Once approved by the Board of Governors or the board's executive committee, a legislative position of the section shall remain for the full biannual session during which the Board of Governors approved the position, unless otherwise reversed or rescinded by them, or by a 2/3 vote of the executive council of the section.
In lieu of, or in addition to, giving approval to support or oppose a particular legislative position, the executive council may, after debate and consideration of the legislative position, adopt a concept of the position the section favors, and report this concept to the Florida Legislature.

Section 6. The expenses incurred by members of the section in connection with the legislative positions of the section shall generally be borne by the individual member, provided, however, the chair may request the appearance of section members to attend legislative functions or to appear before various committees of the Florida Legislature to testify concerning proposed legislation, with the member's expenses to be paid by the section in accordance with its budgetary policies. The expenses of such member's appearances shall be approved in advance by the section chair. Such expenditures shall be consistent with other section policies, and the secretary/treasurer shall be promptly notified of the amount of such expenditure.

ARTICLE XI
MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Section 1. The fiscal year of the section shall be the same as that of The Florida Bar.

Section 2. No salary or compensation shall be paid to any officer of the section, member of the executive council, or member of a committee, provided, however, that officers and members of the executive council shall be entitled to reimbursement for expenses ordinarily, reasonably and necessarily incurred on behalf of the section upon submission to the secretary/treasurer of appropriate requests with receipts.

Section 3. No action by this section shall become effective as the action of The Florida Bar until it is approved by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar. Any resolution adopted or action taken by the section may, on request of the section, be reported by the chair of the section to the annual meeting of The Florida Bar for action by its Board of Governors.

Section 4. These bylaws shall become effective upon their approval by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar and by the section.

ARTICLE XII
AMENDMENTS

These bylaws may be amended only at the annual meeting of the section by a majority vote of the members of the section present and voting, provided any proposed amendment shall first have been approved by a majority of the executive council and written notice of the proposed amendment shall have been provided to all members of the section at least 30 days prior to such annual meeting, and provided further that no amendment so adopted shall become effective until approved by the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar.