Each legitimate descendent of an enrolled family is automatically a member of his or her noble corporation. Only such persons have the right to apply for membership in the umbrella Association of Baltic Noble Corporations.
Membership in a noble corporation is therefore automatic for:
- a person descended by birth in the male line from a member of that noble corporation;
- a woman who marries a member of that corporation.
Married women can request to remain member of their original (by birth) corporation rather than that of her husband.
Exceptionally, a married man can request, giving reasons, membership in the noble corporation of his wife instead of his own.
In both cases, the individual must already be a member of a noble corporation and must be married to a member of another noble corporation. In such cases, the final decision as to membership lies in the hands of that corporation's executive committee.
Membership in a corporation ends after death; for a woman, by marriage to a member of another noble corporation; for a man, following acceptance of his application to join his wife's corporation. Although a corporation's traditional right to enter new families onto the corporative roll no longer exists, the right to exclude someone from the roll still does.