Constitution for

The Law and Religion Society

NYU School of Law

Preamble. The Mission and Vision of the Law and Religion Society

Mission. The Law and Religion Society exists to educate, advocate, and plan debates on the defense of religious freedom, its role in the law & public policy, and the promotion of interfaith dialogue among all the religious groups on at NYU School of Law.

Vision. The Law and Religion Society is dedicated to providing a place for others to hear debates & discussions involving religious liberty and its role in the law & public policy. By advocating all religious legal & policy issues, The Law and Religion Society will strive to promote further dialogue between all religious groups.

Article I.     Formation

1.1  Name.  The name of this organization is The Law and Religion Society at NYU School of Law

1.2  LocationThe Law and Religion Society is chartered and established at NYU School of Law and shall remain chartered at this law school unless its board decide to abolish it.

1.3.  Definitions. When used herein, the terms LARS or The Law and Religion Society refers to the whole student organization.

Article II.    Purpose

The purpose of LARS is to provide education, debate, advocacy, and presentations on the Religious/Legal/Policy arguments for law on a range of social and political issues. Additionally, LARS will provide a network for NYU law students to connect with job opportunities, offers, and lawyers involved in religious freedom advocacy law firms and religious freedom public interest organizations. Finally, LARS will provide a space for intellectual/scholarly discussions on how religion impacts to our view of the law. To that end, LARS will:

  • Connect with religious advocacy organizations and law firms to bring speakers to NYU law for presentations, debates, advocacy, and education.
  • Work with religious public interest organizations/firms to bring internship and interview opportunities to its members.
  • Connect with law professors and lawyers of different religions to help address the question, "How do we reconcile our faith with the law?"

Article III.   Membership

4.1  Activities.  All meetings and activities are open to anyone who is part of the law school or university community, including faculty, staff, and students.

4.2. Membership.  Any full- or part-time student at NYU School of Law may be a member of LARS if they sign up and choose to attend at least 50% of LARS regular meetings or activities.

4.3 Eligibility to Vote. Board members are the only people eligible to vote for the organization’s business that are put to a vote. 

4.4 Termination.  Any member who, for any reason, ceases to be a student at the School shall immediately cease to be a member of LARS

Article IV.  Officers

5.1 GeneralThe Law and Religion Society will consist of at least one officer enrolled at the School as a student. Any officer who, for any reason, ceases to be a student at the School shall immediately cease to be an officer of the LARS.

5.2 Officer Duties. The following offices and duties are stated for the use of those holding office.  The offices of Secretary and Treasurer may be held by the same person. The Vice President duties may be merged with the President’s role. There may also be two co-Presidents, should the board decide it appropriate. The only mandatory office each year is to be the President. All other office positions are optional and at the discretion of the board. Finally, the board may choose to add additional officer positions at its own discretion, without needing to amend this Constitution.

President.  The President shall preside over business meetings and meetings of the Officers.  The President shall operate as The Law and Religion Society’s representative and primary spokesperson to the law school community, university community, and public‑at‑large in all matters for which a formal representative is required or appropriate. 

The President shall be responsible to select and notify the officer(s) who are to lead projects and plan events.  The President shall also be responsible for inviting any guest speakers.  With the consent of the other officers, the President may delegate either or both of these two responsibilities to another officer.

Vice President.  The Vice President shall assist the President in the discharge of his or her duties, as the President may direct, and shall perform such other duties as from time to time may be assigned to him or her by the President.  In the absence of the President, or in the event of the President’s inability or refusal to act, the Vice President shall perform the duties of the President, and when so acting, shall have all of the powers of, and be subject to all of the restrictions upon, the President.

Secretary.  The Secretary shall maintain all non‑financial records of the organization. The Secretary also is in charge of social media, emailing lists, and all the logistics for all events.

Treasurer.  The Treasurer shall be responsible for maintaining all financial records of the organization, including, but not limited to, all records of the payment of funds, deposits and disbursements from the bank accounts pursuant to the procedures described in Article VII.

Other Officers.  Any other Officers appointed pursuant to this Article shall have such duties as are assigned to them by the President.

Each officer is expected to attend meetings and fulfill their duties as tasked by the President.  Although the President is the primary spokesperson for LARS, each officer also serves as a spokesperson for LARS.

5.3 Transition of Authority.  To insure the continual wellbeing of LARS, outgoing officers shall facilitate the orderly transition of authority by taking adequate time in the winter and spring to train new leaders.  The Law and Religion Society shall implement a procedure for the naming of new officers by April 30 of each year. 

5.5 Election of Officers.  Officers shall be elected by vote of the officers at the meeting of the board of officers called for that purpose each year.  Officers may vote in consultation with members, faculty advisors, or other campus ministry staff, should the officers so choose.  Any vacancies in the board of officers shall be filled by a majority vote of the remaining officers.

5.6 Forcible Removal of an Officer.  The removal of a current officer prior to the end of term requires a majority vote of officers.  Such action may be initiated by members or officers.

Article V.  Meetings

Meetings shall be held with enough frequency to accomplish the mission and purposes of the organization. At least four general meetings shall be held during each school year.  The officers, in consultation with the members and any advisor, shall determine the frequency, time and place, and agenda of each meeting and shall insure that adequate notice is given of each meeting.

The President shall be responsible to select and notify before each meeting the officers who are to lead the discussion, planning, plan logistics, as well as for inviting any guest speakers.

All students, staff, and faculty are welcome to attend the Law and Religion Society meetings and events, regardless of race, age, disability, color, national origin, religion, race, sex, veteran status or sexual attraction/sexual practices. 

Article VI.  Finances

The Law and Religion Society may raise revenues through contributions, fundraising activities, or by applying for funds otherwise available to student groups.  The Law and Religion Society shall never charge local dues.  If LARS chooses to raise revenues, it shall insure that the highest standards of morality and financial integrity are met.  At a minimum, LARS shall: maintain its funds in a segregated checking or savings account managed according to School standards; require the signatures of two officers to write a check or withdraw funds; incur financial obligations only when there is sufficient funding to honor the obligations; pay all debts in a prompt manner; and maintain accurate financial records showing all receipts and expenditures and all assets and liabilities of LARS

Article VII.  Restrictions on Activités

The Law and Religion Society shall not carry on any activities prohibited by Sections 501(c)(3) and 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code.  No part of the net income of LARS shall inure to the benefit of its officers or other private persons, except that LARS shall be authorized to pay reasonable compensation for services actually rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of its purposes.  

Article VIII.  Amendments and Interpretations

9.1 Amendments.  The Law and Religion Society may only amend this Constitution by a unanimous vote of the officers.

9.2 Interpretation.  Any conflict or disagreement among officers or members as to the meaning or interpretation of this Constitution shall be settled by a majority vote among the officers.

Article IX.  Force and Effect of Constitution

This Constitution shall take effect immediately upon the creation of the organization, and shall remain in effect until terminated in writing by the unanimous vote of the officers.  If the Constitution is terminated, the Law and Religion Society ceases to exist.