Whether you have a group of friends with similar interests or are looking to start a new society to connect with like-minded people, setting up a university student club can be a great way to receive funding and officially affiliate with your student body. For many students, being involved with clubs and societies is a highlight of their university experience. Clubs typically affiliate themselves with the main student body to ensure funds are spent on activities that support the group. Below, we set out the steps to affiliate your society or club with your university’s main student union.

1. Apply for an Australian Business Number

You will need to apply for an ABN (Australian Business Number) before you can affiliate or set up an official bank account for your club. An ABN is free to obtain in Australia and can easily be done online. For taxation purposes, a university club would be considered a ‘company, partnership, trust or other organisation’, specifically, ‘other unincorporated entity’. Select the option ‘university club operation’ under the question that asks the best category that best matches with the primary business activity. If you do not already have a tax file number, you can apply for one during this process. There is also an option to add associated individuals with the ABN. These individuals can be club officers or elected officials for the club or society.

2. Set Up a Bank Account

To receive funding for events and activities, clubs and societies will require a separate bank account. To open a bank account, the bank will require you to submit a number of documents that set out who will be operating the account and the authority required for transactions. It is also common that banks will request minutes from a meeting approving the opening of a bank account and for a completed Authority to Operate on a Business Account form, issued by the bank. Banks may also ask for the club or society’s constitution.

3. Draft a Constitution

A constitution sets out the rules that govern the operation of the club as well as the liability and executive committee responsibilities. It covers clauses such as how members can be elected, the resolution of disputes, and how clubs operate as a not-for-profit (that is, forbidding the securing of profits for members). While a model constitution may be available by your main student body, it is important to consider whether you need a constitution drafted specifically for your club or society. If you have plans to expand, or deal with external stakeholders such as government agencies or other organisations, your constitution will be one of the most important documents to protect your club.

Constitutions must allow a reasonable degree of control of the affairs of the club by its members, through general meetings and resolutions. Your Annual General Meeting (AGM) must be held in accordance with the constitution, including giving the correct notice and ensuring a quorum is met. Moreover, AGM minutes should also be taken and recorded.

4. Submit Affiliation Documents

While each university is different, the final step will often involve completing the affiliation forms and submitting it to the main student body. Along with the constitution, you may also be required to submit a membership list, contact list and receipts of membership fees if required. You may need to reaffiliate every year, so it is best to keep these documents in a location that is readily accessible online.

Key Takeaways

Starting a club is a unique opportunity to add to the student culture and meet new people. Before you start planning your first event, make sure that you follow the correct affiliation procedure with your main student body. If you require a constitution to be drafted specifically for your club, a contract lawyer can assist. Questions? Call us on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page.

COVID-19 Business Survey
LegalVision is conducting a survey on the impact of COVID-19 for businesses across Australia. The survey takes 2 minutes to complete and all responses are anonymous. We would appreciate your input. Take the survey now.

About LegalVision: LegalVision is a tech-driven, full-service commercial law firm that uses technology to deliver a faster, better quality and more cost-effective client experience.

The majority of our clients are LVConnect members. By becoming a member, you can stay ahead of legal issues while staying on top of costs. For just $199 per month, membership unlocks unlimited lawyer consultations, faster turnaround times, free legal templates and members-only discounts.

Learn more about LVConnect

Anthony Lieu
Need Legal Help? Get a Free Fixed-Fee Quote

If you would like to receive a free fixed-fee quote or get in touch with our team, fill out the form below.

  • By submitting this form, you agree to receive emails from LegalVision and can unsubscribe at any time. See our full Privacy Policy.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Our Awards
  • 2019 Top 25 Startups - LinkedIn 2019 Top 25 Startups - LinkedIn
  • 2019 NewLaw Firm of the Year - Australian Law Awards 2019 NewLaw Firm of the Year - Australian Law Awards
  • 2020 Fastest Growing Law Firm - Financial Times APAC 500 2020 Fastest Growing Law Firm - Financial Times APAC 500
  • 2020 AFR Fast 100 List - Australian Financial Review 2020 AFR Fast 100 List - Australian Financial Review
  • 2020 Law Firm of the Year Finalist - Australasian Law Awards 2020 Law Firm of the Year Finalist - Australasian Law Awards
  • Most Innovative Law Firm - 2019 Australasian Lawyer 2019 Most Innovative Firm - Australasian Lawyer
Privacy Policy Snapshot

We collect and store information about you. Let us explain why we do this.

What information do you collect?

We collect a range of data about you, including your contact details, legal issues and data on how you use our website.

How do you collect information?

We collect information over the phone, by email and through our website.

What do you do with this information?

We store and use your information to deliver you better legal services. This mostly involves communicating with you, marketing to you and occasionally sharing your information with our partners.

How do I contact you?

You can always see what data you’ve stored with us.

Questions, comments or complaints? Reach out on 1300 544 755 or email us at info@legalvision.com.au

View Privacy Policy