Rights of an Associate Member in Housing Societies

Real Estate and Property Law Housing Society Law

Posted by Aditya Pratap on 09 May 24

                                ?php echo htmlentities($row['posttitle']); ?>


“Associate member” means a member who holds jointly a share of a society with others, but whose name does not stand first in the share certificate.”

If only after the Original Member, this establishes him as a valid member of the community. The associate member must fill out a form and pay an admission fee of Rs 100 in order to be accepted into the society.

Living in a housing society means joining a community that is regulated by laws and regulations rather than just renting an apartment. Associate members are one of the membership categories in these societies in addition to full members. Associate membership carries a set of responsibilities as well as some benefits. The Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960.

Rights of an Associate Member:

1) Occupancy Rights:

In general, associate members have the right to occupy the primary member's property. Usually, the terms and conditions that the primary member and the associate member agreed upon apply to this right.

2) Access to Common Facilities:

In housing societies, the bylaws or regulations of the society usually specify the associate members access rights to common areas, parking places, and recreational facilities.

These bylaws outline the level of access that associate members are granted, frequently outlining particular usage requirements and restrictions. These clauses guarantee fair resource distribution while encouraging a feeling of community-based involvement.

Housing societies can uphold peace and order among their members and encourage equitable use of common amenities for the good of all occupants by establishing clear guidelines.

3) Participation in Meetings:

Section 27 of the Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960, states that members have the right to attend and vote in general meetingsAssociate members, on the other hand, usually do not have voting rights unless specifically allowed in the society's bylaws, which set the terms of membership, including eligibility to vote.

Associate members frequently have access to information and participate in discussions, but their inability to vote highlights the distinction between full and associate memberships within the cooperative framework. This provision guarantees fair governance and upholds democratic decision-making rules within cooperative societies.

4) Maintenance Obligations:

As stated in the society's rules and regulations, associate members are normally responsible for maintenance charges and other expenses. These monetary contributions frequently correspond to the advantages and services obtained which is consistent with cooperative structure principles of justice and shared accountability.

By defining procedures for levying and collecting these fees, bylaws guarantee transparency and a fair division of financial responsibilities among members. This framework fosters a sense of communal ownership and accountability among all members, regardless of their voting rights status, and supports the sustainability and operational efficiency of cooperative societies.

5) Rule 23 of the Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Rules, 1961:

Rule 23 of the Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Rules, 1961, pertains to the procedure for conducting elections of committee members in co-operative societies. This rule outlines the detailed process, including the issuance of notice for the election, eligibility criteria for candidates, nomination procedures, the scrutiny of nominations, withdrawal of candidature, preparation of the final list of candidates, and the conduct of the election itself. It aims to ensure fair, transparent, and democratic elections within co-operative societies, thereby upholding the principles of accountability and representation among members serving on the society's committee.

6) Legal Recourse and Dispute Resolution:

If disputes or grievances arise, associate members have the legal entitlement to pursue resolution through proper legal avenues. They can utilize the dispute resolution mechanisms outlined in the Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960, ensuring that conflicts are fairly and impartially addressed.

7) Inspect the Documents:

Associate Member have right to inspect the society's books without paying any money, these include books, registers, documents, the profit and loss statement, the most recent audited annual balance sheet, a list of committee members, a member register, minutes of general, annual, or special meetings, and more.

These can be obtained from the Treasurer or Secretary and must be done if you are investing a fraud or wrongdoing.

8) Resignation of Associate Member:

An associate member may voluntarily resign by submitting a resignation letter to the Society's Secretary through the Original Member, with whom they jointly own membership. The Secretary presents the resignation request, endorsed by the Original Member, for acceptance at the subsequent committee meeting.

The Managing Committee approves resignations promptly. However, if the resignation faces opposition for any reason, the committee communicates the decision and rationale to both the Original and Associate Members within 15 days. In such cases, the reason for non-approval is documented in the meeting minutes for transparency and record-keeping purposes.

9) The Associate Member of the Society has the privilege to nominate one or multiple individuals to inherit their shares or interest in the Society in case of their demise. This nomination is initiated by submitting a designated form to the Society. Upon acknowledgment by the Secretary, the nomination is deemed accepted. Additionally, the Associate Member retains the right to revoke or amend this nomination as needed.


10) Membership after Primary Member Death or Resignation:

The continuity of membership is ensured for associate members, even if the primary member mentioned first on the share certificate ceases to be a member due to circumstances like death or resignation. As long as the associate member holds joint ownership and interest in the property with the primary member, their membership in the society remains intact. This provision guarantees the seamless continuation of rights and responsibilities within the housing society, safeguarding the associate member's stake in the cooperative framework regardless of changes in primary membership status.


Associate Members in Housing Societies possess certain rights and privileges as defined by the society's bylaws. While they may not always have voting rights, they typically contribute to maintenance charges and other expenses. Furthermore, they retain the right to resign from membership, subject to committee approval, and can nominate beneficiaries in the event of their demise. These provisions ensure a balance of rights and responsibilities within the cooperative framework, promoting transparency, equity, and accountability among all members.


Aditya Pratap ~Aditya Pratap