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CALIFORNIA CORPORATE & SECURITIES LAW

Nevada Supreme Court Adopts Delaware’s Direct Harm Test For Derivative Claims

On the same day that the Nevada Supreme Court rejected Delaware’s approach to reviewing special litigation committee determinations, it adopted Delaware’s test for determining whether a shareholder suit is derivative or direct.  Parametric Sound Corp. v. Eighth Judicial District Court, 133 Nev. Adv. Op. 59 (2017).  When shareholders sue officers and directors, they may pursue direct…

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Court Of Appeal Holds LLC’s Former Counsel May Represent Insider Defendants In Derivative Suit

Derivative actions can be somewhat confusing.  Although the entity is essentially the plaintiff, it is named as a defendant.  Initially, one might question why must the corporation be named as a party?  I can think of at least two reasons.  First, the litigation involves the rights of the entity directly.  Second, including the entity as a party…

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Federal Judge Rules Out Private Cause Of Action Under California Control Person Statute

Some persons may be deemed to violate the Corporate Securities Law of 1968 even though they did not directly violate the law.  Corporations Code Section 25403(a) provides that a person who with knowledge directly or indirectly controls and induces any person to violate any provision of the CSL or any rule or order thereunder is deemed to be…

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Court Rejects Challenge To Internal Affairs Doctrine

Marvell Technology Group, Ltd. is a publicly traded company that is incorporated in Bermuda.  Marvell’s U.S. operating subsidiary is based in California.  A year ago, an institutional stockholder filed a derivative suit against Marvell and several of its officers and directors.  The factual bases for the plaintiff’s suit were securities law violations but the plaintiff…

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Shareholder Derivative Action Or Shareholder Derivative Suit?

A legal proceeding brought in a representative capacity is sometimes referred to as a “shareholder’s derivative action” and sometimes as a “shareholder’s derivative suit”.  Which is correct? It turns out that the General Corporation Law doesn’t use the term “derivative”.  Section 800 of the Corporations Code refers to an action “instituted or maintained in right…

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Dismissal Of Involuntary Dissolution Action Pulls The Plug On Corporate Buy Out

Sometimes, shareholders are divided on whether a corporation should live or die.  In these cases, the California Corporations Code provides an option that allows for the continued existence of a corporation.  In any action for involuntary dissolution, or in any proceeding for voluntary dissolution initiated by the vote of shareholders representing only 50% of the voting…

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Delaware Likes Garner/California Not So Much

In 1970, Richard Nixon was president, the 26th Amendment was still not part of the Constitution, and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Garner v. Wolfinbarger, 430 F.2d 1093 (5th Cir. 1970).  In that case, Judge Godbold wrote: The attorney-client privilege still has viability for the corporate client.  The corporation is…

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