A question has been received from Lance, in Port Elizabeth, a South African subscriber about the minutes of an AGM.

The minutes of the AGM are approved as an accurate record at the next AGM and this causes some confusion because some minute takers think, therefore, that they do not have to distribute the minutes until then – a year later! This is incorrect.

Even though the minutes don’t get approved until the next AGM, they should still be distributed or, at the very least, be made available on request, within a few days of the AGM of which they are the record.

The reason is that the members of the organisation require the minutes to implement the decisions which were made and since decisions at AGM’s are nearly always major involving things like policy, fees, major projects etc, the minutes need to be in the hands of the members as quickly as possible.

There is another major reason and that is that the AGM minutes will contain (or should contain) the year’s financial report and all members have the right to have a copy of the financial status of the organisation.

It is the case that the AGM minutes will probably need to be distributed just before the next AGM so that people have a copy to approve at the next AGM.

The next ordinary meeting approves the minutes of the last ordinary meeting, not the AGM, even though it may have been the most recent meeting.

Exactly the same applies to SGM’s – Special General Meetings.

Please Note: The author accepts no responsibility for anything which occurs directly or indirectly as a result of using any of the suggestions or procedures detailed in this blog. This is not, and should not be taken as legal advice. All suggestions and procedures are provided in good faith as general guidelines only and should be used in conjunction with appropriate advice relevant legislation, constitutions, rules, laws, by-laws, and with reasonable judgement. If you are in any doubt, seek appropriate advice.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. To which body ‘belongs’ the minutes of an AGM?
    To the retiring committee or the new committee?
    Can the new committee therefore rewrite the minutes to their own satisfaction if they dispute some items in them or must they await the next AGM to raise objection and propose their own version?
    Our 2019 committee has significantly rewritten last years 2018 AGM minutes and threatened some members who object to this happening.

    1. The AGM minutes “belong” to the whole organisation – neither one or the other committee.
      The only body that can alter the minutes is the membership at the next General Meeting – probably your AGM.
      If the minutes were written properly, there should be no opportunity for them to be re-written – they are either accurate or not.
      I hope this helps.

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