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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
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Experience:  Lawyer
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I am a life member of a retired military organization, now

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I am a life member of a retired military organization, now 76 years old. When I joined at age 60, the rule was to pay $20.00 per year until age 65 and then no more payment for life membership. Now a new president is saying that all members must start paying $20.00 per year and there will be no more life membership...... Does the Fathered Clause apply here?
Hi,

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

Take a look at the original agreement that you signed. Typically, an organization is permitted to change dues if the membership agreement allows. If a person is only buying a one-year membership at a time, there is nothing in the law that would stop them from increasing the rate or for abolishing lifetime memberships. However, if you paid for 5 years so that you could get a lifetime membership at the end of that time, then taking that away could be a violation of your agreement. There's no general grandfather clause, but if you had a contract, they cannot break it unless there is language in the contract that says as much. Otherwise, they cannot revoke lifetime membership from someone who spent paid for five years on the promise that he would then get lifetime membership. That would be a breach of contract.

Also see if there is any information related to the power of the board of directors. In most organizations, a president is not all-powerful. He usually requires board action nd a vote to take action. You may also want to look to see if there is a procedure for recalling members of the board of directors. If so, talk to other members of the organization about it.

If you have any questions or concerns about what I've written, please reply so that I may address them. It's important to me that you are 100% satisfied with the service I provide. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so that I get credit for answering your question. Thank you.
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