MBA Membership Terms and Conditions

This document sets out the terms and conditions of membership of the Marine Biological Association (‘the Association’, ‘the MBA’) and should be read in conjunction with the Rules and Regulations of Membership produced in accordance with the rules set down in clause 13 of the Byelaws of the MBA.

These Terms and Conditions and the content of membership packages (as defined in the Rules and Regulations) are subject to variation from time to time. Members will be notified in advance of any changes.

1. Principle terms

1.1. This agreement commences once you have indicated your acceptance by reading the Terms & Conditions in the Declaration section on the web sign up process and payment has been received.

1.2. You will be entitled to all the rights and privileges exercisable for the membership category chosen.

1.3. This agreement cannot be transferred, except in the case of a legal guardian purchasing Young Marine Biologist membership for a person under the age of 18 or purchasing membership as a gift.

1.4. Membership will be granted on the basis you fulfil the requirements and rights of admission as detailed in the Rules and Regulations.

2. Admittance to membership

Please refer the Regulations and Rules (Appendix 1) for information on admission to membership, requirements, and MBA Council. General terms

2.1 Professional, Associate and Student Members must be 18 or older. Young Marine Biologists are required to provide a legal guardian and have permission from the invoice payer.

2.2. Professional members are required to submit evidence of their eligibility (accepted forms of proof include a copy of your degree certificate in marine biology (or related discipline), a short statement informing us of your professional standing with relevance to marine biology, or a link to an online biography / copy of your CV) and approved by the Membership Team staff. Membership benefits will not commence until approval of eligibility. Failure to provide evidence within 2 weeks of an application means you will re-categorised as an Associate member.

2.3. In order to deliver journal provision, we may share your details with a third party only with consent from you, and as set out in Section 6.1.

2.4. There may be occasions where we have to close all, or part of, the MBA Laboratory or services within it (e.g. the National Marine Biological Library). We will do our best to let you know of such closures in advance of their taking place, unless the problem is urgent or in an emergency. We will use all commercially reasonable endeavours to ensure that such closures are kept to a minimum in both duration and frequency. You will not be entitled to a refund of part, or all, of your membership fees in such circumstances.

2.5. We will not be liable or responsible for any failure to perform, or delay in performance of, any of our obligations under these terms that is caused by any event that is outside of our reasonable control.

2.6. As a consumer, you have legal rights in relation to any services (such as member’s events) that are not carried out with reasonable skill and care, or if the materials we use are faulty or not as described.

2.7. We may terminate this agreement with immediate effect on notifying you if you are in breach of the Terms and Conditions.

3. Fees and charges

3.1 Joining

3.1.1. The full cost of the MBA Membership category (and journal provision) chosen is due upon submission of your application. If paying by Direct Debit, the full cost of the MBA Membership category (and journal provision) chosen, is collected from you by us by Direct Debit approximately 8 weeks from your initial membership application date and is not refundable under any circumstances with the exception of the Money Back Guarantee detailed below. You will receive at least 2 weeks’ notice of any subsequent payment being taken from your account.

3.1.2. If paying by recurring payment, annual payments will be taken from your account on the same date every year (the date of your initial payment). You will receive at least 2 weeks’ notice of any payment being taken from your account.

3.1.3. If any Direct Debit, recurring payment or cheque is returned unpaid, or if any other form of payment is not honoured for whatever reason, we will contact you within two weeks. If, despite us having notified you of a missed payment, or in the event of an unpaid renewal, we reserve the right either to suspend or terminate your membership without writing to inform you.

3.1.4. Payments made online are subject to Paypal’s terms and conditions.

3.2. Price increases

From time to time we may need to increase the price of membership. We will give you at least 1 full months' notice of any planned price increase and will make it clear when the price increase will take effect and how much your membership will cost after the increase (the increase will not be incurred until your next renewal date). This includes when you are no longer eligible for your chosen category and are required to change categories (such as a Young Marine Biologist turning 18 thus becoming eligible for a Student or Associate membership, or a Student member becoming an Associate or Professional member). You will retain your usual right to terminate your membership in accordance with the membership terms and conditions. If you do not terminate the membership by the date given to you in the notice (the date of your next renewal) then the price of your membership will be increased in accordance with our notice.

4. Cancellation

4.1 Termination of membership by us

If you misrepresent the MBA or your conduct is deemed detrimental to the interests of the
Association, the MBA reserves the right to terminate a membership. Please refer to the Regulations
and Rules in Appendix 1 for more information.

4.2 Your right to cancel

4.2.1. Pursuant to The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000, regulation 13(1) and with the exception of the conditions detailed under Refunds, you have the right to cancel at any time once the contract has begun.

4.2.2. A notice of cancellation will be accepted in writing pursuant to the Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 (10).

4.2.3. We will also take appropriate action when informed of a deceased member by a next of kin.

5. Refunds

5.1 Membership

5.1.1. As per the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 you are entitled to cancel your membership and receive a full refund of any fees paid within 14 days of completing your membership application form.

5.1.2. Payment and refund for membership events is subject to the terms of the event itself and will be advertised at the point of event registration.

5.2 Donations

5.2.1 Under charity law, charities are not permitted to refund donations, other than in specific circumstances. However, if you have made an error in your one-off donation e.g. by clicking on the donate button more than once, please contact us by calling us on 01752 426493 or email us at We will refund your donation provided that you contact us within 7 days of the donation being made. Your refund will be credited to the card from which it was taken.

5.2.2. Donations made by Direct Debit are covered by the Direct Debit Guarantee.

5.2.3. This policy complies with the guidelines set out by the Institute of Fundraising.

5.2.4 You may cancel your gift aid donation at any time by contacting the Membership Office.

6. Your personal information

We will store, protect and process data in accordance with the Data Protection Act (2018). You agree to advise us immediately of any change to contact details provided or use the self-service portal to update your profile.

We will use the personal information you provide to us to:

  1. provide your contracted membership services. These include:
    1. Monthly e-mail bulletins
    2. Bi-annual postal mailings of The Marine Biologist magazine
    3. (Optional) Journal provision, and:
  2. process your membership payment.

6.1 Third party

6.1.1. If you request to subscribe to the Journal of the Marine Biological Association, the MBA may securely disclose personal data to a third party named as Cambridge University Press. We will supply your personal data (name, e-mail and address) to Cambridge University Press for the purposes of providing the contracted service of journal provision.

We will not give your payment information, or any other information, to any third party.

6.1.2. The MBA uses Mailchimp to securely distribute a monthly e-mail bulletin only and in accordance with their Terms and Conditions.

6.1.3. The MBA uses Paypal for online payment transactions in accordance with their Terms and Conditions.

6.1.4. The MBA uses Google Surveys to securely distribute occasional surveys and in accordance with their Terms and Conditions. Only surveys written by the MBA for the purpose of improving membership provision will be distributed.

6.1.5. If you receive any communications from a 3 rd party other than Cambridge University Press, please get in touch to alert us immediately as this may indicate a data breach has occurred.

6.2 Privacy Policy

6.2.1 MBA Privacy Statement:

  1. Any personal information collected via the MBA website will not be published or passed on to third parties without prior consent, or where there is a legal obligation to do so.
  2. The MBA Web server automatically collects information including IP address, browser type, operating system, access times etc. Such information is only used for administrative purposes and to monitor traffic to the site.
  3. The MBA is not responsible for the policies or content of other sites and linked to the MBA web site.
  4. The MBA has a registered data controller in accordance with the Data Protection Act (2018). Any personal information submitted, e.g. membership applications, will be dealt with in compliance with this legislation. If you would like a breakdown of why we collect various data from you and how we store it, please ask at any time by contacting
  5. You may opt in or opt out of various communications at any point via the self-service portal
  6. You have the right to control the way we collect, use and process your data, including the right to have your personal data erased from our systems.
  7. If you require further information, or would like your details removed from the MBA’s records, please email

6.3 What your information is used for

6.3.1. Please note that we undertake automated processing on the data. Use of the MBA website and membership portal will indicate that a member has consented to the collection of this information by the MBA.

6.3.2. Information gathered with the explicit consent of the member will only be used for the purpose for which it was intended except in those circumstances where the MBA must provide it to fulfil statutory obligations. The MBA may use personal details to contact members directly for the purposes of obtaining further information needed to fulfil the original purpose. The MBA may use personal information to contact members by electronic or physical means including but not limited to:

  1. sending e-mail to those that have requested it,
  2. telephoning members to obtain additional information and clarification, and
  3. other electronic and physical correspondence.

6.3.3. Individuals receiving e-mail from the MBA electronic mailing lists will:

  1. have provided an e-mail address to the MBA,
  2. consented to the MBA sending e-mail to the address provided, and
  3. be provided with instructions to be removed from the e-mail list within each and every correspondence made on behalf of the list.

6.4. Archiving data

6.4.1 We will keep all data associated with your membership record securely stored on file for five years following the expiry of your membership for purposes of legitimate interest and marketing analysis.

6.4.2. After five years (if you have not resumed membership in this time), the membership record and associate details will be destroyed or deleted from all databases. Person records and correspondence for the membership categories of Fellows and Honorary Fellows will be kept in the MBA’s Archives for purposes of historical interest of the Association.

6.4.3. An annual person summary list, containing first name, last name, membership category and dates of membership, and county of residence is collated in the MBA’s Archives for historical interest of the Association.

7. National Marine Biological Library

The National Marine Biological Library (NMBL) is a reference library which is open to members from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. Information on library services and resources can be found at

By agreeing to the Terms and Conditions of Membership, you agree to use the NMBL’s print and
electronic resources in accordance with the rules below:

8. Information about us

8.1 Registered charity

The MBA is a registered charity in England and Wales. Its registered charity number is 1155893. Its registered office is at The Laboratory, Citadel Hill, Plymouth, Devon, PL1 2PB, UK. Its registered VAT number is GB143463479.

8.2 Contact details

If you have any questions or if you have any complaints, please contact us by telephoning the Membership Secretary on 01752 426331 or by e-mailing If you wish to contact us in writing, or if any clause in these terms requires you to give us notice in writing you can send this to us by e-mail to the Membership Secretary at or post it to us at the address given above. We will confirm receipt of this and aim to complete your request within two weeks.

9. Copyright

All content included on the website, such as text, graphics, logos, button icons, images, audio clips, digital downloads, data compilations, and software, is the property of the Marine Biological Association, unless otherwise stated, or its content suppliers and protected by international copyright laws. The compilation of all content on the website is the exclusive property of the Marine Biological Association, with copyright authorship for this collection by the Marine Biological Association, and protected by international copyright laws.

Appendix 1.

Regulations and Rules November 2017_0.pdf