Saudi Bar Association Charter

Saudi Bar Association Charter PDF File  


The Council of Ministers,

Having reviewed:

– The letter received from the Royal Court No. 29754 dated 27/7/1435 AH, containing the Ministry of Justice letter No. 122272/30 dated 20/4/1431 AH, concerning the establishment of a national association for lawyers,

– The draft Regulation of Saudi Bar Association,

– Paragraph (2) of Article (24) of the Council of Ministers Regulations issued by Royal Decree No. (A / 13) dated 3 /3 / 1414 AH,

– The Code of Law Practice issued by Royal Decree No. (M/38) dated 28/7/1422 AH,

– The Statements No. (624) dated 28/12 / 1433 AH, No. (341) dated 17/6/1434 AH, No. (521) dated 20/9/1434 AH, and No. (310) dated 16/6/1436 AH, prepared by the Bureau of Experts at the Council of Ministers,

– The Recommendation of the General Committee of the Council of Ministers No. (861) dated 18/6/1436 AH,

The Cabinet, hereby, decides as follows:

First: Approval of the Charter of Saudi Bar Association as in the attached form.

Second: As an exception to the provisions stipulated in the Charter, the following shall be implemented:

1. The General Assembly of the Association shall consist, in its first year, of all licensed lawyers.

2. The Minister of Justice shall invite all licensed lawyers to the first meeting of the General Assembly chaired by him or his representative within one year of the formation of the first Board of Directors. The meeting shall be considered valid through those who have attended.

3. The Minister of Justice shall select five persons from the licensed lawyers who shall assume the responsibilities of the Committee referred to in Article (7) of the Regulation until this committee is formed pursuant to the provisions of the Regulation.

4. The Minister of Justice shall appoint the persons to serve on behalf of the members referred to in paragraph (g) of Article (9) of the Regulation in the first Board of Directors of the association.

Establishment of the Association

Pursuant to the provisions of this Regulation, a professional association entitled (Saudi Bar Association) shall be established and have a legal entity and an independent financial liability.

It shall operate under the supervision of the Ministry of Justice, and the location of its headquarters shall be in the city of Riyadh. It may establish branches within the Kingdom by a decision of its Board of Directors.

Objectives and Powers of the Association 2
The association aims at raising the level of the practice of lawyers to their profession, ensuring their good performance, and increasing their awareness of their professional duties pursuant to this Charter and other applicable regulations. 2-1
In order to achieve its objectives, the Association shall have all the necessary powers to do so, including the following:

1. Develop the rules and standards of practicing the profession, review and promote these standards according to the legal principles and applicable regulations.

2.Take care of the interests of the principal members of the Association related to practicing the profession according to the rules of the Charter, and work to provide them with the necessary services in this regard, including endorsement of their signatures.

3. Organize courses and hold conferences, seminars, meetings, forums and exhibitions related to the legal profession, as well as participating in them after coordination with the Ministry of Justice according to the official procedures.

4. Develop and evaluate qualifying and training programs in the field of the profession, and participate in it with the competent authorities.

5. Conduct and publish studies and research, as well as publishing books, publications, scientific and professional journals and periodicals.

6. Submit proposals related to the profession to the competent authorities.

7. Provide legal aid and technical advice in the field of competence to the beneficiaries.

Membership 3
Membership in the Association shall be as follows:

1. Principal Membership: Saudi licensed lawyers for practicing legal profession in the Kingdom, and who have paid the prescribed annual fees of membership, shall enjoy this membership.

2. Affiliation Membership: All those who meet the conditions of practicing legal profession in the Kingdom shall enjoy this membership after applying to the Board of Directors of the Association and obtaining approval of the Board to this application, as well as paying the prescribed fees for annual membership.

3. Honorary Membership: It shall be vested on those individuals the Board of Directors of the Association decides to grant from among those who make distinctive contributions to serve the objectives of the Association.

Termination of Membership

Membership shall terminate in any of the following cases:

1. Death.

2. Deletion from the list of licensed lawyers for the principal members.

3. The member’s delay in paying the due membership fees for more than ninety days from the date of entitlement and fifteen days from the date of payment warning.

4. Issuance of a causal decision by the Board of Directors to terminate membership.

5. Withdrawal from the membership of the Association.

General Assembly 5
The Association shall have a General Assembly that is comprised of all the principal members
Meetings of the General Assembly 6
1. The General Assembly shall hold its ordinary meeting within ninety days from the beginning of each fiscal year of the Association. The meeting shall be chaired by the Chairman of the Board of Directors or his representative from the members of the Board. The meeting shall not be valid unless at least half of the members attend. If the quorum is not complete, another meeting shall be held during a period of not less than fifteen days and not more than sixty days from the date of the first meeting. In this case, the meeting shall be valid by its attendance. The General Assembly may hold exceptional meetings as determined by regulations.

The Ministry of Justice may delegate its representatives to attend the meetings of the General Assembly.

The resolutions of the General Assembly shall be passed by a majority vote of the members present. If the voting in the meeting is equal, the vote of the chairman of the meeting shall outweigh.

  1. The Chairman of the Board of Directors shall invite the General Assembly meetings by at least thirty days before the date of convening. The invitation specifies the time, place and agenda of the meeting.

Election Committee

In the first year of each new session of the Board of Directors, a General Election Committee that consists of five members shall be established.  Three of these five members shall be principal members of the associations and shall be chosen by the General Assembly, and a member of the General Secretariat of the Association as well as a member of the Ministry of Justice. This Committee organizes the elections conducted within the framework of the Association, supervise and announce the results of the elections. None of the members of this Committee shall have the right to vote in any elections supervised by the Committee.

The meetings of the Committee shall be valid in the presence of the majority of its members. The resolutions of the committee shall be passed by a majority vote of its attendant members.

The Regulations shall specify the provisions governing the work of the Committee, in particular with respect to the attendance of its members, its chair, as well as the commencement and termination of its work.

Powers of the General Assembly 8
The General Assembly shall have the following powers:

1. Approve the bylaws necessary for this Charter.

2. Approve the administrative and financial bylaws of the Association.

3. Propose a bylaw for the classification of lawyers and their ranks, and submit it to the Ministry of Justice to take what deemed appropriate.

4. Approve the rules and criteria for the acceptance of the applications for affiliation membership.

5. Determine membership fees and any financial remuneration paid to the Association and the payment mechanism.

6. Elect the members of the Board of Directors of the Association stipulated in paragraph (g) of Article (9).

7. Define the annual budget of the Association and approve its final accounts.

8. Approve the work plan submitted by the Board of Directors of the Association as well as the annual report of the Association.

9. Approve the investment policy of the Association’s funds.

Formation of the Board of Directors of the Association 9
The Board of Directors shall be as follows:

A. Minister of Justice    (Chairman)

B. A representative from the Ministry of the Interior   (Member)

C. A representative from the Ministry of Justice          (Member)

D. A representative from the Ministry of Commerce and Investment    (Member)

E. A representative from the Board of Grievances       (Member)

The grade of the representatives of governmental agencies should not be less than (14th Grade) or its equivalent.

F. Two Saudi faculty members in universities from the relevant colleges chosen by the Minister of Education                       (Two Members)

G. Five of the principal members in the Association elected by the General Assembly                                                             (Members)

The elected member must have the following two conditions:

1. To be regular and committed in paying prescribed membership fees for the last three years.

2. No final disciplinary decision has been issued against him.

Membership in the Board of Directors for the members referred to in paragraph (g) of Article (9) shall be terminated by a decision from the Board of Directors in any of the following two cases:

1. Resigning from the membership of the Board of Directors.

2. Not attending three consecutive meetings of the Board, or six separate meetings in one session without an excuse accepted by the Board.

The Term of the Board of Directors 11
The term of the Board of Directors shall be three years. The members referred to in paragraph (g) of Article (9) shall not be elected for more than two sessions.
Board meetings, Quorum of Attendance and Voting 12
1. The Board shall meet upon the invitation of its Chairman at least once every ninety days, or whenever at least four members request it in writing.

2. Pursuant to the provisions of Article (9), the Board shall hold its meetings in the presence of a majority of its members, including the chairman or his representative from the members of the board. Decisions of the Board shall be made by a majority vote of the members attending. If the votes are equally weighted, the side to which the Chairman of the meeting votes is to be outweighed.

The Secretary-General or his representative shall be the Secretary of the Board without having the right to vote. The Board may request the presence of those whom the board sees in need of to hear their views or to use them. Those who attend in this capacity shall have the right to participate in the discussion as requested without having the right to vote 12-2
Powers of the Board 13
Except for the powers of the General Assembly, the Board shall have the right to exercise all powers necessary for the performance of the Association’s affairs and achievement of its objectives, including:

1. Propose the necessary regulations for this Charter and the financial and administrative bylaws for the Association.

2. Propose membership fees or any financial remuneration paid to the Association, and the payment mechanism.

3. Prepare the final account and the annual draft budget of the Association.

4. Prepare the annual report on the activities of the Association.

5. Form necessary committees to assist the Board in the exercise of its functions.

6. Accept endowments, donations, wills and Waqfs.

7. Propose the investment policy of the Association’s funds.

8. Propose the Association’s work plan for each fiscal year.

9. Participate in developing and evaluating rehabilitation and training programs in the field of the profession with the competent authorities.

10.  Receive complaints against lawyers relating to the professional aspects and try to settle them.

11.  Establish a periodic list containing the names of lawyers who volunteer to provide judicial assistance and nominate those deemed appropriate at the request of the concerned authorities including investigative authorities and courts.

12.  Grant Honorary Membership.

13. Decide on applications for affiliation membership and terminate the membership of principal and affiliated members.

14. Study professional applications of member lawyers, and consider its support with the competent authorities.

15. Manage fixed and transitional funds of the Association in order to achieve its objectives in accordance with the financial regulations.

Representing the Board 14
The Chairman of the Board of Directors or his representative represents the Association in its relations with other authorities and before the judiciary
General Secretariat 15
The Board shall have a Secretary-General and one or more Assistant Secretaries appointed by the Board. The Board shall specify their duties and responsibilities. They shall be required to serve full time in the Association.

The Secretary-General may appoint sufficient staff necessary to assist him in the performance of his responsibilities according to the approved budget of the Association.  The Secretary-General shall have the power to distribute tasks and work to the employees associated with him.

The Secretary-General shall have among his powers the endorsement of the signatures of the principal members.


Fiscal year 16
The fiscal year of the Association is the fiscal year of the State, with the exception that the Association’s first fiscal year shall commence on the date of the entry into force of this Charter and ends at the end of the next fiscal year.
Resources of the Association 17
The Association’s resources consist of the following:

1. Membership fees and financial remuneration for the services provided.

2. Government subsidies, if any.

3.Endowments, donations, wills and Waqfs accepted by the Board of Directors.

4. Return on the investment of its funds.

5. Other resources approved by the Board of Directors.

Financial Transactions 18
The Association shall deposit its cash money under its name in a local bank. No amount may be cashed except by a check signed by the Chairman of the Board of Directors or the individual authorized to do so from the members of the Board and the Secretary-General. The Association may not spend its money for purposes other than for which it was established.
External Auditor 19
The Association shall have an auditor appointed by the General Assembly from among the legal accountants holding license to work in the Kingdom.

The General Assembly shall determine its salary. The General Assembly shall have the right to access the records and documents and to make any observations deemed suitable. The auditor shall submit a report on the Association’s accounts to the General Assembly.

The Charter’s validity 20
This Charter shall come into force after sixty days from the date of its publication in the official Gazette.