Robert's Rules

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Robert's Rules for Assigning the Floor

Knowing that members control decisions but the chair controls the floor is at the heart of successful presiding with Robert's Rules. Early in a discussion, the situation is pretty clear. Members rise and [more…]

Robert's Rules for Appealing a Ruling by the Chair

Even the most highly studied, best prepared, and popular presiding officer with a deep knowledge of Robert's Rules can make mistakes. When one of those mistakes involves a ruling on a matter of parliamentary [more…]

Robert's Rules for Objecting to Consideration of the Question

If you think a motion is such a bad idea that it shouldn't even be discussed, according to Robert's Rules, you can make a motion to object to the consideration of the question. This incidental motion is [more…]

Robert's Rules for Making a Parliamentary Inquiry

You may have the sense that something isn't being done according to Robert's Rules, but you don't want to tip your hand or embarrass yourself by raising a point of order until you're sure. Or, you may [more…]

Robert's Rules for Making Nominations

Your organization needs officers, maybe committee members, and other positions decided by a vote of the membership. Robert's Rules sets out several methods of making nominations for positions: [more…]

Robert's Rules for Conducting Elections

The election process may be the easiest part of deciding who handles a particular job in the organization. Robert's Rules on elections are very straightforward after what is often a politically charged [more…]

Robert's Rules for Voting by Ballot

Ballot voting is the preferred voting method in situations in which knowing how all the members voted isn't desirable. You can use a ballot vote to decide either a motion or an election: [more…]

Robert's Rules on Absentee Voting

A fundamental principle of parliamentary law, and Robert's Rules, is that decisions are made only by the members present in a properly called meeting at which a quorum is present. However, sometimes you [more…]

Robert's Rules for Postponing a Motion Indefinitely

The subsidiary motion to postpone indefinitely is the Robert's Rules way of avoiding uncomfortable decisions; its adoption means that your group has agreed not to decide. The adoption of postpone indefinitely [more…]

Robert's Rules for Amending a Motion

The motion to amend is perhaps the single most-used of the subsidiary motions allowed by Robert's Rules. You use this motion when you want to change the wording of the motion under consideration. You can [more…]

Robert's Rules for Referring a Motion to Committee

If a motion needs to be discussed much more informally or at greater length than is possible in a regular meeting, Robert's Rules allows you to refer the motion to a committee, or perhaps to the executive [more…]

Robert's Rules and Subsidiary Motions

A group using Robert's Rules gets things done through motions. A main motion generally proposes that the group take some action, but the real work often is done through [more…]

Robert's Rules for Limiting and Extending Debate

Robert's Rules allows a member to speak in debate twice on each motion — with up to ten minutes per speech! Even for small boards, that kind of rule can make for some l-o-o-o-ng meetings, especially if [more…]

Robert's Rules and the Previous Question Motion

How often have you come home from a meeting exhausted because you listened to the same points made over and over again? Robert's Rules has a solution: the previous question subsidiary motion. Although [more…]

Robert's Rules and the Motion to Lay on the Table

Under Robert's Rules, the subsidiary motion to lay on the table refers to temporarily setting aside a pending motion (or a series of pending motions) to take care of something else deemed urgent. The motion [more…]

Robert's Rules for Adjourning a Meeting

Who doesn't love to hear, "I declare the meeting adjourned!"? The Robert's Rules motion for adjourning a meeting is simple but essential for almost every meeting. [more…]

Robert's Rules for Raising a Point of Order

Rules are put in place to protect members' rights, and when the rules aren't followed, those rights can get trampled. Fortunately, Robert's Rules says that any member who notices a breach of the rules [more…]

Using Robert's Rules: The Presiding Officer's Script

The best presiding officers plan ahead. With an agenda and knowledge of the business at hand before the meeting, a plan can turn into a script like the following example that following Robert's Rules and [more…]

Making and Handling Motions Following Robert's Rules

In an organization that's following Robert's Rules, when that light bulb goes off in your head and you have a great idea, you make a motion to get your idea discussed and a decision made. Here are the [more…]

Following the Standard Order of Business

An easy way to remember the Robert’s Rules standard order of business is with the mnemonic 3R-SUN — you can see it clearly in the following list. This list is a quick reference to make it easy for you [more…]

Robert’s Rules For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Robert's Rules provides rules and procedures that allow a deliberative assembly to make its decisions efficiently, but with all due regard for the rights of the minority. Following the rules ensures more [more…]

Robert's Rules and the Motion to Consider by Paragraph

You can use the motion to Consider Seriatim, or Consider by Paragraph, anytime your parliamentary situation has you considering a long report or a motion with many parts, and you want to be able to discuss [more…]

Robert's Rules and the Motion Division of the Assembly

Use the motion Division of the Assembly if you doubt the result of a voice vote (or a vote by show of hands). You have the right, as a single, lone member, to demand that the vote be immediately taken [more…]

Robert's Rules and Motions Related to Methods of Voting and the Polls

Whenever you want to vote on a motion using another method of voting, you use a motion related to themethod of voting. And whenever you want to specify when voting will take place, you use a [more…]

Robert's Rules and Motions Related to Nominations

Whenever you need to specify a way to come up with nominees, as you probably will for situations your bylaws don’t cover, you use a motion related to the method of nominations. And whenever you want to [more…]


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