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PRS membership categories

Our PRS membership categories determine your right to attend and vote at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and the number of votes you’re entitled to. They also determine whether you’re eligible to stand to become a Council Member on the Members’ Council  (previously the PRS Board) and nominate other members to stand.

There are three categories of PRS membership:

  1. Standard
  2. Voting
  3. Principal Voting

The below table shows more information on the differences between the categories:

* if meeting criteria under 'Additional voting rights of Principal Voting membership'  
Standard Voting Principal Voting
Access to Annual Report & Accounts Yes Yes Yes
Attend AGMs No Yes Yes
One vote on a show of hands No Yes Yes
One vote on a poll or ballot No Yes No
Ten votes on a poll or ballot No No Yes
An additional 10 votes on a poll or ballot No No Yes*
To nominate or be nominated for the Members' Council No No Yes

Your category is decided by your length of membership, PRS royalty earnings and the extent to which these earnings meet, or exceed, certain financial thresholds which are explained below.

When joining, you’ll be admitted as a Standard member, but you can qualify for promotion to Voting or Principal Voting membership in a future year after our yearly promotion process which is overseen by the Council.

The financial thresholds are set by the Council and approved by members in a general meeting. The thresholds are fixed and adjusted every year in line with the percentage change in RPI (retail price index) published in December for the previous years.

Standard membership

If you’re a new member, or a member whose royalty earnings don’t meet the criteria for promotion to Voting or Principal Voting member, you’re known as a Standard member.

Voting membership

You can be promoted to be a Voting member if your total royalty earnings in the previous one to three years are equal or more than the following amounts:

Writers

Publishers
£1,328
£6,640

If at any time during that period you were a member of an affiliated society, the total will include royalties paid by us to that society.

To become a Voting member, you must have been a member of PRS or an affiliated society for at least a year.

If you are a successor member, you will automatically be admitted as a Voting member.

Principal Voting membership

You can be promoted to be a Principal Voting member if your total royalty earnings in two of PRS’ three preceding financial years are equal to or more than the following amounts:

Financial Threshold 
Writers £9,296
Publishers and successors £46,480

For example, you would need to reach this threshold in 2021 and either 2019 or 2020 as well. If at any time during that period you were a member of an affiliated society, the total will include royalties paid by us to that society.

Once you are a Principal Voting member, you will remain one regardless of if your royalty earnings dip below the financial thresholds shown above.

Additional voting rights of Principal Voting membership

As a Principal Voting member, you can be eligible for an additional 10 votes in a poll or ballot if your total royalty earnings are equal to or above the following amounts (depending on your joining date):

Joined on or before 1 Jan 2001

(total royalties for period 1 Jan 2001 to 31 Dec 2020)

Joined on or before 1 Jan 2019

(total royalties for period 1 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2020)
Writers £92,959 £185,918
Publishers and successors £464,796 £929,592

The eligibility for these additional 10 votes is reviewed on a yearly basis.

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