FÉDÉRATION INTERNATIONALE DES TRADUCTEURS
(International Federation of Translators)
Registered Office: Regus, 57 rue d’Amsterdam, 75008 Paris, France.
An international association created by a French ministerial order dated March 18, 1954,
and registered at the Préfecture de police de Paris on June 15, 1954, under No. 26.721.
(as last amended by the XXIst Statutory Congress at Brisbane in August 2017)
I – NAME, REGISTERED OFFICE, DURATION AND PURPOSES
Article 1 — The “FÉDÉRATION INTERNATIONALE DES TRADUCTEURS” (FIT), an international non-profit organisation, formed under and registered in accordance with the Laws of France, is a federation that brings together associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists and promotes interaction and co-operation between such associations. Its membership includes those specialising in other elements of translation, interpreting and terminology or in research and education. Commercial entities and organisations of commercial entities are not eligible for membership.
Article 2 — The Federation is established for an indefinite period of time.
Its statutory seat is in France.
Its Secretariat shall operate on a virtual basis or as determined by the Council.
Article 3 — The purposes of FIT shall be solely professional, cultural and scientific. FIT shall be non-political and shall not have any religious affiliation.
Article 4 — FIT shall above all –
(a) act as the international voice of translators, interpreters and terminologists and make that
voice heard in the relevant public and political arenas;
(b) seek to enhance the professional status of the translators, interpreters and terminologists in society;
(c) strive to establish links and co-operation with other international organisations, especially in the field of translation, interpreting and terminology;
(d) encourage the exchange of information and best practices among its member associations;
(e) promote the harmonisation of professional standards and compliance with best practices across the world;
(f) stimulate and support education, training and research in translation, interpreting and terminology;
(g) strengthen the community of translators, interpreters and terminologists internationally by providing assistance for the establishment of associations in countries where they do not yet exist;
(h) lend its good offices in resolving any disputes involving member organisations;
(i) uphold the moral and material interests of translators, interpreters and terminologists throughout the world.
Article 5 — FIT shall also represent professional translators, interpreters and terminologists at the international level, particularly vis-à-vis international governmental and non-governmental organisations and public opinion, ensure representation at meetings that may concern translators, interpreters and terminologists at any international level, prepare and issue publications, and organise or arrange for the organisation of meetings at which any matters concerning translators, interpreters and terminologists may be discussed.
II — MEMBERSHIP
CATEGORIES OF MEMBERSHIP
Article 6 — FIT shall have the following categories of members: regular members, associate members and observer members.
ADMISSION TO MEMBERSHIP
Article 7 — Any professional association of translators, interpreters and terminologists as defined in Article 1 may be admitted as a regular member, provided that such association is independent or a clearly-defined part of another association and pursues purposes that are consistent with those of FIT.
Article 8 — Any organisation other than an association specified in Article 7 may be admitted as an associate member, provided that such organisation is specialised in any element of translation, interpreting or terminology or in related research and education and is interested in the activities and in the furtherance of the purposes of FIT.
Article 9 —Any association defined in Article 7 or any organisation defined in Article 8 may be admitted as an observer.
Article 10 — Applications for regular or associate membership shall be submitted to the Council, which, after review, may grant the status of Candidate Member in the category applied for.
Article 11 — Applications for observer membership shall be submitted to the Council, which, after review, may grant the status of observer member for a maximum period of three years.
Article 12 — Any applicant contemplated in Article 10 whose application has been rejected by the Council may present its case to the next Congress. The Congress may admit such applicant by a two-thirds majority of votes cast.
Article 13 — Candidate members shall enjoy the same rights, with the exception of the right to vote, and be subject to the same duties as full members in their category. They shall obtain full membership status at the next Congress unless the Congress decides by a two-thirds majority of votes cast to refuse the candidate member definitive admission. If so, the applicant shall lose candidate member status but this shall not preclude it from submitting applications subsequently.
Article 14 — The capacity of honorary advisor is granted to individuals who have contributed in a special way to promoting the aims of the Federation. There may be a maximum of ten honorary advisors at any one time. Council puts forward nominations for Congress approval with a simple majority of votes cast. The capacity of honorary advisor is granted for life. The honorary advisor may attend any meeting of the Executive Committee or the Council and any session of the Statutory Congress as an observer, where observers are accepted.
TERMINATION OF MEMBERSHIP
Article 15 — Any member may withdraw from FIT at the end of any calendar year by notifying its withdrawal in writing not less than three months prior to the end of the calendar year.
Article 16 — Termination of membership shall be recorded by the Council when a member has ceased to exist.
Article 17 — The Council may suspend a regular, associate or observer member that has failed to pay its dues for more than one year. Such decision shall require a simple majority of votes cast by Council members.
Article 18 — The membership of a regular, associate or observer member may be terminated by decision of the Statutory Congress if the purposes or activities of the member concerned have become incompatible with the purposes of
FIT. The Congress may also terminate the membership of a regular, associate or observer member that, having been suspended by the Council under the preceding article at least one year earlier, has failed to pay its dues as required. A decision to terminate membership shall require a two-thirds majority of votes cast.
III — GOVERNING BODIES
Article 19 — The supreme governing body of FIT shall be the Congress.
Article 20 — The Congress shall be composed of delegates from regular members. Associate and observer members may be represented by observers.
Article 21 — The Congress shall convene every three years at a place and approximate date determined by the preceding Congress. The exact date and venue and the proposed agenda of each Congress shall be determined by the Council in accordance with the Rules of Procedure.
Article 22 — The Congress shall receive the report of the outgoing Council, decide on FIT’s general policy and activities, fix dues, appoint the auditors, hold elections and deal with any other matters of governance.
Article 23 — If, for reasons of force majeure, the Congress cannot take place at the chosen venue or on the chosen date, the Council may postpone it for up to one year.
Article 24 — Attendance by, or representation by proxy of, at least one-third of regular members in good standing shall constitute a quorum. Representation by proxy shall be by another regular member in good standing or by a Council member other than the Treasurer or the Secretary General. A regular member or a Council member may not represent more than two regular members by proxy.
Article 25 — Should the quorum not be reached, the Council shall convene a Second Congress whose decisions will be valid regardless of the number of regular members present or represented. This Second Congress shall take place within six months of the Congress which did not meet the quorum requirements.
Article 26 — Only regular members in good standing shall have the right to vote. Associate members and observers shall have the right to speak but not to vote.
Article 27 — A regular member shall have one vote.
Article 28 — In the interval between Congress meetings, the Council shall be the governing body of FIT. The Council shall hold one physical meeting and at least one virtual meeting every year.
Article 29 — The Council shall be elected directly by the Congress and shall remain in office until the following Congress, to which it shall be answerable, shall report on its past conduct of affairs, and make recommendations for future activities.
Article 30 — The Council shall be composed of 17 persons who are individual members of any regular member of FIT in good standing at the time of the election.
(a) Nominating associations must have been members of FIT since the previous Congress. No association may nominate more than two of its members for Council.
(b) Fourteen Council members shall be elected by a plurality of votes cast by regular members in good standing from among the candidates nominated by or with the express written consent of these associations.
(c) Three more Council members duly mandated by their home association shall be co-opted by secret ballot of the newly elected Council members, at their first meeting, specifically to ensure that the full Council (elected plus co-opted members) will so far as possible include representation of the major geographical regions, languages and communication specialities.
(d) Each Council member shall commit him/herself to fulfilling one or more specific duties on a regular basis as proposed by the President and decided by the Council. Council members may be entrusted with the task of liaising regularly with Regional Centres.
(e) Council members and other FIT office-bearers may not use their position for commercial purposes or to endorse any commercial product or service.
Article 31 — The term of office of a Council member shall expire:
- upon death;
- upon resignation;
- upon termination of the Council member’s membership in the member association which nominated him/her;
- upon termination of membership in FIT of the member association which nominated him/her;
- upon a request for his/her withdrawal made by the member association which nominated him/her;
- by exclusion in the event of serious misconduct, on Council’s decision taken by a two-thirds majority of votes cast;
- upon completion of three full consecutive terms; this shall not preclude the said Council member from standing for election again after an additional period of three years has elapsed.
Article 32 — Any Council seat falling vacant more than one year prior to the next Congress shall be temporarily filled by co-option. Any Council seat falling vacant within one year of the next Congress shall not be filled.
THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Article 33 — The Council shall elect from its elected members an Executive Committee composed of a President, three Vice-Presidents, a Treasurer, a Secretary General and, if necessary, one or more other members, all of whom shall serve without remuneration. Under normal
circumstances, an office-bearer shall hold no more than one office. With the consent of the Council, the Executive Committee may establish a permanent Secretariat of FIT and hire salaried staff.
Article 34 — The Executive Committee shall be elected for the same term of office as the Council. Under normal circumstances, the Executive Committee shall meet at least three times a year.
Article 35 — The Executive Committee shall submit a report of its activities to every meeting of the Council and shall be answerable to it, always ensuring that the Council receives all the information and support it needs to exercise its function as supreme FIT governing body between Congress meetings. Executive Committee decisions are not binding on the Council, unless otherwise specified by these Bylaws or the Rules of Procedure.
IV — REGIONAL CENTRES
Article 36 — FIT shall seek to set up Regional Centres to meet the needs of translators, interpreters and terminologists associations in specific regions. Once established, Regional Centres shall adopt their own regulations, which shall be submitted to the Council for approval, and shall be responsible for their own finances. They may apply to the Council for specific project-related funding.
Article 37 — New FIT members are entitled to belong to the Regional Centre for their geographic location and shall be notified of this accordingly.
Article 38 — Matters that can be handled better at regional than at global level shall be dealt with by the relevant Regional Centre (principle of subsidiarity), unless there is an overriding global interest. In case of doubt, the Council shall decide on the assignment of responsibility.
Article 39 — Regional Centres shall report at least once a year to the Council and shall in turn receive ad hoc information from the Council on any developments or events affecting or pertaining to their specific region.
Article 40 — Regional Centres shall be informed about and receive updates from FIT Task Forces on any projects or activities affecting or pertaining to their specific region. They shall also have the right to send a representative to FIT Task Forces meetings as an observer.
Article 41 — Regional Centres shall seek to share their information with the other Regional Centres on a regular basis.
V — FINANCE
MANAGEMENT OF FUNDS
Article 42 — The financial resources of FIT shall be derived primarily from the dues received from member organisations.
The Federation shall strive to constitute and maintain reserves equivalent to one financial year’s income from members’ subscriptions.
All financial activities of FIT shall be governed by the FIT Rules of Financial Procedure.
Article 43 — The Treasurer shall be responsible for the proper administration of all available resources and their appropriations. The Treasurer shall keep the Executive Committee informed of FIT’s financial situation and submit the accounts to it. Moreover, the Treasurer shall prepare a financial statement for and on behalf of the Executive Committee for each meeting of the Council.
Article 44 — At the latest on 30th April each year, on behalf of the Council, the Treasurer shall submit a financial statement covering the previous calendar year to all member organisations. The financial statements included in this report shall be accompanied by a report in accordance with the International Standard on Review Engagements.
Article 45 — On behalf of the Council, and by 31st December of each year at the latest, the Treasurer shall submit a budget for the next financial year to all member organisations.
Article 46 — Each member organisation shall pay such annual dues as shall be fixed by the Congress upon motion by the Council.
Article 47 — Any regular member that has failed to pay its annual dues up to and including the current year shall not have the right to vote at Congress.
VI — PROCEDURES
Article 48 — FIT shall be legally represented either by the President and Secretary General of FIT together or by one of them acting jointly with one of the Vice-Presidents appointed for this purpose by the Council at its first meeting.
RULES OF PROCEDURE
Article 49 — The Rules of Procedure, as adopted and, as the case may be, amended by a simple majority of votes cast at the Congress, shall determine FIT’s working procedures, its organs, Task Forces and Standing Committees, as well as the rights and obligations of its members.
ADOPTION AND AMENDMENTS OF THE BYLAWS
Article 50 — The Bylaws and any amendments thereto shall be adopted by a two-thirds majority of votes cast at any Congress where the quorum set by Article 24 is met.
Article 51 — Notice of any amendment whether proposed by a regular member, the Executive Committee or the Council shall be issued to all member organisations at least two months prior to Congress meeting at which such an amendment is to be considered.
Article 52 — In special cases, however, the Council may decide to submit any proposal for amendment of the Bylaws to an online vote. Bylaws amendments by online vote shall be approved by a two-thirds majority of votes cast by regular members, the quorum being the same as for the Congress. An online vote of this kind may not be held in the twelve months preceding the Congress.
VII — EXTRAORDINARY CONGRESS
Article 53 — An Extraordinary Congress may be convened to cope with any major internal crisis, to remove the entire Council or to decide on the dissolution of FIT. An Extraordinary Congress may be convened by the Council or at the request of at
least 30% of the regular members. The quorum for an Extraordinary Congress shall be one-half of the regular members plus one. Decisions shall require a two-thirds majority of the votes cast by regular members present and represented.
Article 54 — If the quorum is not attained, a new Extraordinary Congress shall be held not later than three months after the initial inquorate Congress. At this second Extraordinary Congress, the quorum required will be the same as for an ordinary Statutory Congress.
Article 55 — In the event of dissolution, the Congress shall appoint liquidators to wind up the Federation.
The Congress shall dispose of the net assets in whatever way it may deem best, subject only to compliance with the Laws of France.
VIII — COMING INTO FORCE
Article 56 — Amendments to the Bylaws shall come into force immediately upon their adoption, unless otherwise specified. In the case of amendments adopted by online vote, these shall become binding one month after the date when member organisations were notified of the outcome of the consultation.