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CALIFORNIA CORPORATE & SECURITIES LAW

Donald Trump’s Contribution To Nevada Corporate Law (And My Book)

A signature block in a contract seems like a small thing, but sometimes it can lead to litigation.  When an officer signs a contract, is he signing solely as agent for the corporation or might he also be signing in his individual capacity?  In 1993, future presidential candidate Donald J. Trump faced just that question…

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Professor Bainbridge Takes On S.B. 75 And The Delaware Bar

UCLA Law Professor Stephen Bainbridge recently posted an article calling Delaware’s recently enacted S.B. 75 a “self-inflicted wound”.   SB 75, which was signed into law late last month, limits the ability of Delaware stock corporations to adopt so-called “fee shifting” bylaw provisions. What I find particularly interesting is Professor Bainbridge’s thesis that the Delaware legislature…

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Why Commissioner Gallagher Is Not Mistaken On Political Spending Disclosure

In this post published on October 30, I observed: According to Enver Fitch and Limor Bernstock at ISS ESG Proxy Research, shareholders associated with the Center for Political Accountability submitted 47 proposals this year.  The 32 that actually went to a vote only garnered an average of 28.5% of the vote.  That means that on…

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The Point Of An Unenforceable Noncompete May Be Very Sharp Indeed

Writing for Mother Jones, Kevin Drum recently asked “What’s the point of an unenforceable noncompete agreement?”  He posits two possible answers: First, it’s just boilerplate language they don’t really care about but left in just in case.  The second is that they find it useful as a coercive threat. UCLA Law School Professor Stephen Bainbridge picked…

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California’s New RULLCA Provides Ample Potential For Member Liability

Recently, I wrote about Corporations Code Section 17703.04(a) which in singularly inept fashion attempts to establish the non-liability of members of a limited liability company under the California’s new Revised Uniform Limited Liability Company Act.  Whatever principle Section 17703.04(a) may be trying to enunciate, it’s clear that the new act provides ample opportunity for member liability, including the following: Liability…

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The Legality Of Corporate Giving

According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the top three corporate philanthropists (Wells Fargo, Walmart and Chevron) in 2012 gave nearly $900 million in cash in 2012.  At the most fundamental level, do corporations have the power to make donations? For corporations governed by the California General Corporation Law, the answer is generally yes.  Section 207(e) of the California Corporations…

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Is LLC Veil Piercing Really “Not Required By Statute”?

Professor Stephen Bainbridge begins his abstract Abolishing LLC Veil Piercing with the following assertion: Courts are now routinely applying the corporate law doctrine of veil piercing to limited liability companies.  This extension of a seriously flawed doctrine into a new arena is not required by statute and is insupportable as a matter of policy. But is…

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Where Exactly Is It Written That Shareholders Aren’t Liable For Corporate Debts?

Recently, UCLA Law School Professor Stephen Bainbridge took notice of Section 6.22(b) of the Model Business Corporation Act and asked what might lead a corporation to waive the limited liability of shareholders in its articles of incorporation.  That section provides “Unless otherwise provided in the articles of incorporation, a shareholder of a corporation is not…

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Does Majority Voting Improve Performance?

I’ve railed against the lack of analytical clarity with respect to so-called “majority vote” regimes. See Jeremy Bentham – Present But Not Voting. Professor Stephen Bainbridge recently called attention to dueling academic studies that reach opposite conclusions regarding the value of implementing majority voting:  Majority voting for directors and the problem with empirical legal “scholarship”.

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Court Rejects SEC’s Interpretation That All Exchange Act Reports Are Public

SEC Misreads The Dodd-Frank Act Commenting on the SEC’s short-lived resource extraction rule, Professor Stephen Bainbridge recently posted: Can’t anybody at the SEC do basic cost benefit analysis? I hesitate to enter into a wortwechsel with Professor Bainbridge, but I disagree.  The SEC’s error was much worse than simply flubbing a cost-benefit analysis – it…

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