I'm looking for the correct term in English for the right that for instance an alternate board member may have to attend a board meeting even if they haven't been summoned to that particular meeting. I found the phrase "right of presence", but I'm uncertain as to whether this is the correct term. If it isn't, what is? I realise that I can always rephrase, but I need the actual "technical" term for it.

Thank you!

  • 1
    I don't understand what you mean by an alternate board member may have to attend a board meeting even if they haven't been summoned to that particular meeting. Surely if they "have to attend", by definition that means "they have been summoned". Please explain the real-world situation more clearly. Feb 23, 2021 at 19:29
  • 1
    You attend a board meeting: right to attend meetings//right of attendance. alternate board members have the option to attend meetings.
    – Lambie
    Feb 23, 2021 at 20:22
  • @FumbleFingers :) It's all part of the relative clause postmodifying "right" – that is: "the right that x may have". I realise it's a clumsy way of putting things though.
    – Helen
    Feb 24, 2021 at 9:58
  • 1
    One is not "summoned" to board meetings. One is notified of them or one receives notice of a board meeting.. Summoned is a stentorian act: The principal summoned the student to his office. And alternate board members may attend meetings even if they have not been called (upon) to attend one, for example. Again, many years in the saddle.....
    – Lambie
    Feb 24, 2021 at 14:45
  • 1
    No, Helen, I am not saying they always have the right to attend. I was merely properly phrasing your info above. You might want to look at some corporate governance organizations websites. Generally, people are sent: Notice of Board Meeting [title], followed by info.
    – Lambie
    Feb 24, 2021 at 18:20

2 Answers 2


(iii) notice of special meetings of committees shall also be given to all alternate members, who shall have the right to attend all meetings of the committee. The Board may adopt rules for the government of any committee not inconsistent with the provisions of these bylaws.


An example: right to attend meetings or board meetings.

If you attend a board meeting, you are present at it but right of presence is not a usual term.

SEC company filings

  • right to attend board meetings
  • right of attendance [less usual]

They do not have the right to participate in the meetings unless the board allows time for them to do so. However, they do have a right to attend the meetings, listen to the discussion, and hear how the board members vote.

Robert's Rules of Order, the bible for this kind of thing.

Robert's Rules of Order


"Right of presence", in legal matters, is the right of the accused to be present at their own trial. I suppose you could use this term, but it is not a specifically correct term.

"Right to be present" is simple and clear. Most legal documents are not actually written in legal code, and the "plain and clear meaning" is the one that courts usually accept.

An alternate board member has the right to be present at all board meetings, including those to which they have not been summoned.

"The right to attend" would work equally well.

  • I have never seen that, ever. Certainly not in a context of board meetings.
    – Lambie
    Feb 24, 2021 at 14:42

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .