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Join the IPA

Details of how to become a member of the IPA, including associated costs, who is eligible, obligations of membership and who to contact.

The process of becoming a member

Costs of membership

Who is eligible to become a member?

Obligations of membership

For details of how to become a personal member of the IPA, please click here .


The process of becoming a member

1. Contact Aisling Conlon or Pippa Nicholas to discuss costs, benefits and obligations: 020 7201 8240/020 7201 8246

2. Complete the corporate membership application form

3. Undergo financial, legal and agency checks

4. Have your application approved by the IPA Membership Committee

5. Have your application approved by the IPA Council

Costs of membership

Each member agency pays an annual subscription based on its gross income for the previous year. For the purposes of calculating IPA membership subscriptions, we define gross income as total turnover less direct cost of sales. Please note that direct cost of sales should not include any staff or freelance costs, which should be included in the gross income figure.

To find out how much your subscription would be, you can use the online subscription calculator

The IPA reconciles each member's account annually, once it has received the agency's audited gross income figure for the previous year.

It is a requirement of membership for all applicant agencies to pay a Registration Fee of £480 (including VAT at 20%). An application will only be processed once payment has been received. Please note that this fee is non-refundable in the event of an application being rejected.


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Who is eligible to become a member?

The IPA represents agencies and only agencies, not clients, advertisers or media owners. So our focus is absolutely single-minded when it comes to promoting the best interests of our members.

To qualify for corporate membership, an agency must satisfy the following criteria:

Definition of an Agency:

1. An "agency" shall mean a trading company whose principal business objectives are to create, maintain and enhance the value of its clients’ brands and businesses through advertising, marketing communications or marketing services. Only agencies meeting this definition shall be entitled to be members of the IPA.

Admission to Membership:

2. An agency applying for admission to IPA membership shall give an undertaking to observe, in the event of admission, the provisions of the Royal Charter, Bye-Laws and this Rule Book (each as may be amended from time to time) and all other rules and regulations of the IPA for the time being in force. Such undertaking shall be included in the form of application for admission (see Appendix 1 to this Rule Book, but which may be amended from time to time) and shall be signed by the agency's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or equivalent authorised person.

3. An agency shall only be considered for corporate membership of the IPA and permitted to remain in corporate membership if the agency can prove to Council and the IPA Secretariat that it:

a) Meets the definition of "agency" set out in Rule 1;

b) Is not directly or indirectly controlled by, or otherwise under the authority of, any advertiser, media owner, supplier or other third party, which control or authority may restrict the agency's ability in any way to act impartially or independently in the provision of services to any clients;

c) Is solvent and can provide independent evidence (for example, by way of audited accounts) demonstrating that it achieves a gross income of at least £500,000 per annum, or such other figure as Council shall from time to time decide;

d) Has no recent history of insolvency or other voluntary financial arrangements, no directors' disqualifications and/or no involvement by directors who have been directly responsible for bad debts to the IPA in the past;

e) Supports self-regulation in the advertising and marketing communications industry and has complied with all ASA adjudications upheld against it;

f) Commits to achieving Continuous Professional Development (CPD) accreditation by the end of its first full calendar year in membership; and

g) Has passed a resolution at a Board Meeting, approving membership and agreeing to comply with its obligatons of membership. 

Please note that entry into IPA membership is at the sole discretion of the IPA Council. Council is not obliged to explain its reasoning behind its decision to the applicant agency.

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Obligations of membership

All member agencies are bound to:

• observe the provisions of the IPA Royal Charter and Bye-laws and the IPA Rule Book ;

• pay their annual subscriptions by the due date on the invoice;

• commit to achieving CPD accreditation by the end of their first full calendar year in membership and to maintain annual accreditation thereafter;

• notify the IPA in writing prior to 1st November, should they wish to resign from membership at the end of any year, to avoid subscriptions becoming due for the whole of the following year.

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Last updated 27/02/2018

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