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Article I — Name
The name of this international organization, founded on August 29, 1909, in Budapest, is the International League Against Epilepsy (hereinafter called “the ILAE”).

Article II — Effective Date
This Constitution is amended and valid as of August 2005.

Article III — Objectives
The objectives of the ILAE are to:

  1. Advance and disseminate throughout the world knowledge concerning the epilepsies.
  2. Encourage research concerning the epilepsies.
  3. Promote prevention, diagnosis, treatment, advocacy and care for all persons suffering from these disorders.
  4. Improve education and training in the field of the epilepsies.

Article IV — Methods
To that end, but without restricting the main objectives of the ILAE, and insofar as the same shall be wholly charitable, the ILAE shall:

  1. Encourage the establishment and maintenance world-wide of societies with the same objectives as the ILAE which will be members of the ILAE (hereinafter designated “Chapters”).
  2. Seek to establish and maintain effective cooperation with other organizations world-wide active in the field of the medical sciences, public health, and social care, who are, or may become concerned with problems related to the epilepsies.
  3. Promote publications concerning the epilepsies and arrange for the publication of the journal of the ILAE, Epilepsia, and other ILAE educational and informational materials.
  4. Organize or sponsor international congresses, symposia, or other meetings, in particular the International Congress of the ILAE, to be held at the time and place as prescribed in the Bylaws.
  5. Appoint special commissions or individuals for the purpose of studying specified problems related to the aims of the ILAE and making recommendations for implementation of specific activities.
  6. Develop and apply other methods consistent with the objectives of the ILAE.

Article V — Legal Status
The ILAE is a non-profit, tax exempt, international organization incorporated in the District of Columbia, U.S.A.

Article VI — Membership

  1. Member chapters are composed of professionals who are involved in patient care or research in epilepsy and whose primary concern is with the problems of epilepsy. The minimum membership of a chapter is 9 professionals which is deemed to be the minimum number that would allow the rotation of President, Secretary-General and Treasurer. Exceptionally, a chapter may consist of a mixed professional and lay membership for a period of time. In this situation, only professional members constitute the basis for dues, voting and holding office.
  2. There shall be only one Chapter in each country defined as any State recognized as a member of the United Nations and/or World Health Assembly. When there is more than one eligible organization in a country, the Executive Committee shall recommend for membership that organization which, in its opinion, can best accomplish the objectives of the ILAE. Organizations in territories/regions that do not fall within the above definition of a State may exceptionally be considered for membership by the Executive Committee and ratified by the General Assembly.
  3. The Chapters shall be voted into the ILAE upon the approval of the Executive Committee and two-thirds vote of those attending the meeting of the General Assembly. Pending approval by the General Assembly, a prospective chapter may be provisionally admitted to the ILAE by decision of the Executive Committee which will entitle the prospective chapter to all rights of membership except the right to vote.
  4. By applying for membership a prospective chapter agrees to fulfill all obligations of Chapters as stated in this Constitution and Bylaws. Chapters are autonomous societies, but their Constitutions must not contain articles inconsistent with the Constitution of the ILAE.
  5. A prospective chapter becomes a chapter after approval by the General Assembly, submission to the Secretary-General of a list of names and addresses of its own members, and payment of its dues.
  6. A chapter may withdraw from membership by giving notice in writing to the Secretary-General.
  7. On recommendation of the Executive Committee, membership may be terminated by a two-thirds vote of those attending the meeting of the General Assembly, if the Chapter fails to pay its annual dues or if, for any other reason, it no longer fulfills the stated requirements for membership.
  8. The Chapters are organized into Regions as determined by the Executive Committee.

Article VII — Governance
The ILAE shall be governed by the Executive Committee and the General Assembly.

Article VIII — The Executive Committee

  1. The Executive Committee shall conduct the affairs of the ILAE subject to ratification by the General Assembly.
  2. The Executive Committee shall consist of:
    1. The President, Secretary-General, Treasurer, Vice Presidents, and the Immediate Past President as elected members. Only elected members shall have the right to vote.
    2. The President, Secretary-General and Treasurer of the International Bureau for Epilepsy (hereinafter called the “IBE”), as ex-officio, non-voting members.
    3. The Editor-in-Chief of Epilepsia and the Information Officer as non-voting members.
  3. The term of office for elected Executive Committee members is four years. Candidates for the Presidency must have served, or be in the process of serving, at least one term on the Executive Committee. After serving as President, the person shall automatically serve one term as Immediate Past President. The President and the Immediate Past President shall serve one term. The Vice Presidents, the Secretary-General, and the Treasurer may be re-elected for one additional term to any one of these offices. Thereafter, they may only be elected to the Presidency.
  4. The Editor-in-Chief of Epilepsia and the Information Officer shall be appointed by the Executive Committee and serve at their discretion. The term of office can not exceed twelve years.
  5. Should any vacancy in the Executive Committee occur it shall be addressed by the Executive Committee subject to ratification by the General Assembly.
  6. No person may occupy a seat on the Executive Committee for a period exceeding a maximum of sixteen years.
  7. The President shall appoint an independent Elections Commission, of five persons, each representing different regions, and chaired by the Immediate Past President. The Executive Committee shall not interfere with the business of the Elections Commission. The Commission is to conduct the elections and establish appropriate procedures that are not in conflict with the constitution and bylaws and respect the following constraints:
    The Elections Commission shall be responsible for fully informing all Chapters about the elections process and its procedures eighteen months in advance of the meeting of the General Assembly during which the new Executive Committee takes office.
    The election of the President will be carried out first, followed by the election of two Vice Presidents, Secretary-General, and Treasurer.
    The geographic distribution of the elected officers, including the president, shall be restricted as follows: Each of the five elected officers must be primary members of different chapters. Primary membership is defined by the location of where professional activities are performed. No more than two members of the Management Committee shall come from the same region, as defined by the geographical division accepted within ILAE, and no more than three of the five elected officers shall come from the same region.
  8. In the event that after the global elections of President, two Vice Presidents, Secretary General, and Treasurer, and the appointment of Editor-in-Chief and Information Officer, any fully operational region of the ILAE (as determined by the Executive Committee) is not present on the Executive Committee, the Chapters of this region shall elect an additional Vice President. This Vice President will be a voting member of the Executive Committee and not be considered as a regional Vice President but unrestrictedly share the global responsibilities of the Executive Committee.
  9. The Executive Committee may hold meetings at any time or in any place which may be convenient to its members; it may conduct its business also by other appropriate means of communication. Only business of which minutes have been made, acknowledged by the members of the Executive Committee who participated, will be considered legal business of the Executive Committee.
  10. Two-thirds of the voting members of the Executive Committee constitute a quorum. Decisions are made by a majority of the voting members attending. In the event of a tie, the President has a deciding vote.
  11. The Executive Committee shall have the power to formulate at any time Bylaws not in conflict with the Constitution. These Bylaws are legally binding, but a posteriori corrective action may be taken by the General Assembly to revoke or amend these rules.
  12. The Executive Committee shall approve the annual budget of the ILAE and shall set the dues to be paid by the Chapters.

Article IX — The General Assembly

  1. The General Assembly consists of all approved Chapters of the ILAE.
  2. Regular meetings of the General Assembly shall be convened during each International Congress of the ILAE. Participants shall consist of one delegate from each Chapter who carries the total number of votes of that chapter.
  3. Representatives from more than fifty percent of the Chapters attending a meeting of the General Assembly shall constitute a quorum. Decisions will be taken by a majority of the votes of those attending.
  4. The General Assembly shall receive and consider for vote of approval the reports of the President, the Secretary-General, and the Treasurer.
  5. The General Assembly shall vote on proposals submitted by the Executive Committee.
  6. The General Assembly shall approve the admission of new Chapters and the termination of membership of Chapters.
  7. The General Assembly shall set the time and place of future Congresses, after recommendation by the Executive Committee.
  8. Meetings of the General Assembly are open unless a number exceeding ten percent of the delegates present requests the Chair to close the meeting to observers. Only delegates may speak and vote. Exceptionally the presiding officer with the approval of the General Assembly may invite a non-delegate to speak, but not to vote.
  9. Between regular meetings of the General Assembly, should urgent business arise requiring General Assembly action, this shall be carried out in writing, using available technology as determined by the Executive Committee. Such business must involve responses from at least fifty percent of the Chapters, and decisions would require a majority of the votes of those responding.
  10. Chapters whose total votes correspond to a minimum of twenty-five percent of all available votes may request a written consultation by mail of the General Assembly. Reasons for doing so must be sent to the Executive Committee ninety days before the consultation.

Article X — Finances

  1. The ILAE shall have the authority to accept and administer gifts, legacies, movable or immovable properties, donations, and assets of any kind without any restrictions as to the amount or value and to collect annual dues of its Chapters.
  2. The assets of the ILAE shall be used to further the objectives of the ILAE as authorized by the Executive Committee.
  3. No portion of the assets of the ILAE shall be paid directly or indirectly to any Officer, members of its Commissions and Taskforces, or officers of its Chapters, except for payment of expenses made in the interest of the ILAE.
  4. Proper books of account shall be overseen by the Treasurer and they shall be certified by a qualified auditor at the end of each fiscal year.

Article XI — Epilepsia

  1. The Editor-in-Chief of Epilepsia shall be responsible for editing Epilepsia in accordance with the general policies established by the Executive Committee.
  2. The Editorial Board shall consist of editors appointed by the Editor-in-Chief. The term of office of the editors is four years and editors may be reappointed.
  3. The editorial Advisory Board of Epilepsia shall consist of the Executive Committee and shall approve all contracts related to the publication of Epilepsia.
  4. All financial responsibilities of Epilepsia reside with the Treasurer and the Executive Committee of the ILAE.

Article XII — Information and Communication
The Information Officer oversees the collection of relevant information on epilepsy according to a policy agreed by the Executive Committee and ensures its availability to professionals throughout the world.

Article XIII — Commissions and Taskforces

  1. Commissions and task forces in unlimited number may be appointed by the President of the ILAE as recommended by the Executive Committee. The President, Secretary-General and Treasurer of the ILAE shall be ex-officio members of all commissions and taskforces, except the Elections Commission.
  2. No expenses shall be incurred by a Commission or Taskforce on behalf of the ILAE without the consent of the Executive Committee.
  3. Annual budgets and financial reports of the Commissions and Taskforces must be approved by the Executive Committee.

Article XIV — International Bureau for Epilepsy

  1. A privileged relationship exists between ILAE and IBE as partners for addressing respectively the professional and social aspects of the epilepsies.
  2. ILAE and IBE will establish appropriate administrative structures that will facilitate the accomplishment of mutual objectives.

Article XV — Amendments

  1. The present Constitution may be amended by a two-thirds vote of those attending the meeting of the General Assembly.
  2. Amendments may be initiated by the Executive Committee, or by Chapters whose total votes correspond to a minimum of twenty-five percent of the votes of the General Assembly. Such amendments must be submitted to the Secretary-General at least ninety days before the next meeting of the General Assembly, and due notice of such amendments shall be given to all Chapters by the Secretary-General at least sixty days before the meeting of the General Assembly.

Article XVI — Dissolution or Merger

  1. The ILAE may be dissolved or merged with another body having similar objectives on proposal of the Executive Committee, ratified by two-thirds of the available votes of the General Assembly as well as two-thirds of the total number of Chapters.
  2. In the event of dissolution, the assets of the ILAE may not be divided among its members but shall be transferred to one or more other international organizations of similar interests, as agreed by the General Assembly.


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