If the solicitors in the SMDF convene an EGM they can, in most conceivable circumstances, act as they decide.
If the solicitors in the Law Society pass the proposed SMDF bailout resolution they can act on it only if the Law Society has statutory authority to do what the resolution proposes. The reason is this; it would be unlawful to deprive a solicitor of his or her livelihood simply because he or she declined to contribute to the Law Society’s favourite charity, the SMDF.
The Law Society does not have that statutory power.
It would cause phenomenal reputational damage to the solicitors’ profession if it is later demonstrated that the Law Society does not and did not have the legal authority to compel solicitors to bailout the SMDF.
There are two sensible things the Council of the Law Society should do urgently.
1. Cite the presumed statutory authority for the Council’s bailout plan;
2. Change plan and convene an EGM of SMDF members to have those members bailout their own private company.
The Council members who are SMDF members could easily procure the EGM meeting. At a minimum it would be instructive if the SMDF declines its own bailout