Court Poised To Decide Whether Directors Are Agents

Not quite four years ago, I wrote about whether directors are agents.  The post was prompted by then Chancellor William B. Chandler III’s assertion: This is because the board’s power – which is that of an agent’s with regard to its principal – derives from the shareholders, who are the ultimate holders of power under

California, Nevada and 38 Other States Have These, But Delaware Doesn’t

According to the National Center for State Courts, forty states, including California and Nevada, have established intermediate courts of appeal.  California’s Court of Appeal was established by a constitutional amendment adopted by the voters in November 1904.  Originally, the Court of Appeal was comprised of three districts, with the First District sitting in San Francisco,

California Reverts To Former Securities Anti-Fraud Statute

Readers of this blog will recall my chariness of a 2013 amendment to California’s basic securities anti-fraud statute.  See California Creates Complete Chaos By Rewriting Anti-Fraud Statute, But “We Are Against Fraud Aren’t We?”  Although I identified a host of issues, my fundamental concern was that by rewriting California Corporations Code Section 25401, the legislature

Section 10(b) Claim Receives a Do-Wacko-Do

So many Section 10(b) claims involve claims of misrepresentation that it easy to forget that the rule also makes it unlawful to use manipulative devices in connection with the purchase or sale of securities.  However, a recent ruling by Judge Margaret M. Morrow considered whether a plaintiff had adequately pled a claim of manipulative conduct in

Conduct Unbecoming Of An Officer And An Employee?

In proposing executive compensation recoupment rules, the Securities and Exchange Commission either overlooked or failed to recognize an important legal distinction.  The proposed rules would require national securities exchanges and national securities associations to establish listing standards requiring each issuer to develop and implement a policy providing for the recovery, under certain circumstances, of incentive-based compensation based on financial

Nevada Corporate Law: What’s Wrong With Expedition?

As someone who has been writing about Nevada corporate law for over two decades, I’ve been somewhat amused by the recent “discovery” of the Silver State as an alternative to Delaware.  Writing for The Wall Street Journal, Liz Hoffman observed that Nevada is the second most popular state after Delaware for public company incorporations.  This prompted

SEC Staff Declares Performance History Is Not Factual

The Securities and Exchange Commission staff recently issued a series of additional Compliance and Disclosure Interpretations with respect to what might constitute a “general solicitation” under Regulation D.  These interpretations illustrate the logical contortions that must be endured when trying to regulate speech.  After admitting that an issuer may disseminate factual information about itself, the

Why The SEC’s Pre-Existing Relationship Test Is The Mirror Image of California’s

One significant condition to California’s limited offering exemption is that all purchasers have a “pre-existing relationship”: All purchasers either have a preexisting personal or business relationship with the offeror or any of its partners, officers, directors or controlling persons, or managers (as appointed or elected by the members) if the offeror is a limited liability

Does The Power To Choose Not Include The Power To Remove?

Last week I wrote about Vice Chancellor John W. Noble’s ruling in Gorman v. Salamone, C.A. No. 10183-VCN (Del. Ch. July 31, 2015) that a stockholder adopted bylaw empowering stockholders to remove officers is invalid.  The stockholder grounded his argument on Section 142(b) of the Delaware General Corporation Law, which provides: Officers shall be chosen in such

Did You Ever Wonder What You Might Do In California But Not Delaware?

A recent decision by the Delaware Court of Chancery tackles the question of whether a stockholder may adopt a bylaw granting stockholders the right to remove officers.  In Gorman v. Salamone, C.A. No. 10183-VCN (Del. Ch. July 31, 2015), Vice Chancellor John W. Noble ruled that such a bylaw was invalid under Delaware law. The stockholder