Standard Operating Procedures

The Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) were developed to replace the existing by-laws and regulations and complement the constitution approved by delegates at the 2019 Annual State Congress.

They were developed in consultation with the DC7 who brought practical sub-branch and District Council experience to the process. As with the previous by-laws and regulations, the SOPs form part of the 2019 constitution. However, they are not intended to be rigid, step-by-step instructions.

They allow the flexibility needed to accommodate the full diversity of sub-branch methods of operation, recognising the practicality that no two sub-branches necessarily conduct their business in exactly the same way.

As such, the SOPs have been written as practical guides to help office holders run a sub-Branch within the compliance parameters of the relevant legislation and regulations. For example, the SOP dealing with sub-branch Property has less flexibility, due to the nature of the business being transacted, than the SOP offering guidance on how to run a sub-branch general meeting. The purpose of the SOPs is to provide references to compliance obligations where necessary and provide flexibility where possible.

Process for Approval, Amendment and Review

Initial Implementation

Following the adoption of the constitution at Congress in Albury, the SOPs came into effect on 1 December 2019. The SOPs attached to this manual have been reviewed by the new District Presidents’ Council and the Board. As new SOPs are required or developed, they will be reviewed and approved in conjunction with the District Presidents’ Council.

Future Amendments

Should a sub-branch or District Council feel any part of any SOP needs amendment, it can resolve at a general meeting of the sub-branch to submit the amendment to the District Presidents’ Council for consideration and approval. If approved by the District Presidents’ Council, the amended SOP is then forwarded to the Board of RSL NSW for final approval (ref: clause 21.1). Once the amendment is approved the document is dated and published on the RSL NSW website. Notice of the amendment will be circulated to sub-branches as soon as practicable after this process has been completed.


As is best practice, all SOPs will be regularly reviewed to ensure that they are up-to-date and compliant with the RSL NSW constitution and the latest relevant legislation and regulations. They will also be reviewed against their practical application to sub-branches and District Councils. The review will be performed by the District Presidents’ Council who will then be able to approve any changes and recommend the updated SOP to the Board of RSL NSW. The effective date on the front cover of each SOP will indicate when the document will be due for a review by the District Presidents’ Council.

How to use

As previously mentioned, the SOPs are meant to be a practical guide to assist with the activities of an RSL sub-branch or District Council. They are not inflexible, prescriptive rules. Where needed, each SOP includes reference to particular legislative and regulatory requirements. However, where possible, they are flexible enough to reflect the many and varied ways that a sub-branch or District Council operates within its local community.

The SOPs should be referred to when:

  1. New members are elected to be office holders of a sub-branch or District Council.
  2. An issue arises of which the office holders or members are unfamiliar.
  3. In order to ensure the sub-branch/District Council is aware of its obligations to RSL NSW and various other entities, such as government regulators.

Members of the sub-branch and District Council office holders should ensure that they make themselves aware of any amendments or changes to the SOPs. These amendments and changes will be circulated as soon as practicable after approval by the District Presidents’ Council and the RSL NSW Board. The most up-to-date versions of the SOPs will be available on the RSL NSW website. It should be noted that compliance with the SOPs does not absolve sub-Branch or District Council office holders from being aware of their own legal and regulatory obligations.

The sub-branch and Member Support Unit will be available to assist sub-branches with navigating the SOPs and provide clarification where required. Please contact the Support Unit on 1300 679 775 or if you have any questions.


The approved versions of the SOPs are available below: