The New Zealand Law Society operates under a constitution, as set out in the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act (Lawyers) Constitution 2008.
Part B of that consitution came into effect on 1 February 2009, setting in place a new organisation model. The Society now has 13 branches around the country, based generally on the former districts (Canterbury and Westland having amalgamated).
The Society's council comprises up to 25 members, including the president, four vice-presidents, a representative from each branch, and representatives from each of the Society's sections, the NZ Bar Association and a group representing the large law firms.
The board, which comprises the president and the four vice-presidents, manages the affairs of the society and implements its functions; the council having delegated to the board many of its powers.
Under the LCA, all lawyers are regulated by the Society, but membership is voluntary, and that is reflected in the constitution.
The constitution also provides for the establishment of sections - member interest groups such as the current Property Law Section and Family Law Section and CLANZ (Corporate Lawyers Association of New Zealand). It makes specific provision for the future establishment of a legal executives' section.
The constitution is registered by the Registrar of Companies and is published in the Statutory Regulations series.