Amending Bylaws

post-it on a cork board with a light bulb drawn on it

All bylaws need to be amended from time to time. Ideas change and new situations arise that need to be addressed in the bylaws.

Most state not-for-profit corporation laws provide that the right of amendment is reserved to the membership at large for membership-based organizations. Also, legal statutes may require that the official call of the meeting include notice of any proposed amendments to the bylaws, their exact purpose, wording of the proposed change, or a combination of these requirements.

Congregations must determine how the congregation will amend the bylaws, and what majority will be required to do so.


  • Notice needed for meetings including proposed bylaws amendment(s) (usually in weeks or days)
    • Reference to Board Governance Policy on Notices for Congregational Meetings
  • Information needed in the notice, e.g.
    • "The content of such amendments shall be stated in the notice or call for the congregational meeting."
    • "The notice of any such meeting at which any such proposed amendment(s) shall be considered shall include a copy of the proposed amendment(s)."
  • Quorum required (if different than quorum for regular congregational meetings)
  • Percentage needed for approval