Proxy Statements

News & Analysis as of

Settlement of Calma v. Templeton Provides Guidance on Setting Director Pay

In response to recent lawsuits by the plaintiffs’ bar, I have previously posted about why public company employers may wish to consider adding a separate annual limit on non-employee director equity awards. Just last month...more

SEC Publishes FAQs on Pay Ratio Rule

The SEC has published five FAQs on its pay ratio rule – see new questions 128C.01 to 128C.05. As we noted in our checklist of preliminary planning matters for the upcoming proxy season, the pay ratio disclosure need not be...more

How to Avoid Director Pay Litigation

In the last few years, Delaware courts have issued several rulings in lawsuits involving complaints of excessive compensation to non-employee directors (1). The takeaways from these cases can be summarized as follows...more

Delaware Court of Chancery Dismisses Post-Closing Disclosure Claims for Damages, Cautioning That Such Claims Are Best Pursued...

In Nguyen v. Barrett, C.A. No. 11511-VCG, 2016 WL 5404095 (Del. Ch. Sept. 28, 2016) (Glasscock, V.C.), the Delaware Court of Chancery dismissed an amended complaint seeking damages for alleged disclosure violations in...more

Court Of Chancery Explains When To Expedite Disclosure Claims

This decision is helpful in clarifying that claims alleging disclosure violations in a proxy statement need to be pressed before a merger closes. ...more

Taming the Bull Rider: Chancery Court Reining in Mootness Fee Awards in Merger Litigation

Last month, the Delaware Chancery Court drastically reduced – from $275,000 to $50,000 – a mootness fee award requested by plaintiffs’ counsel in a lawsuit challenging the merger between PayPal and Xoom Corporation, finding...more

The Delaware Plaintiff’s Bar Mines a New Vein of Liability: Limits on Director Compensation

Compensation committees composed of independent outside directors were created as the check-and-balance guardians against management compensation engorgement. But as the Roman philosopher Cicero famously posed, “Who guards...more

Ouch! Proxy Statement Argues That Resolving Dispute In California Court Was “Costly And Time Consuming”

As Ralph Waldo Emerson once famously told Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.: ““Holmes, when you strike at a king, you must kill him.” For the full story, see The Corporations Code Can Make Suing Your Former Employees Costly. I was...more

Seventh Circuit Adopts Trulia Standard for Disclosure-Only Settlements

Last week, in an opinion authored by Judge Richard Posner, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit rejected a proposed class-action settlement arising from Walgreen Co.’s acquisition of the Swiss-based pharmacy...more

Seventh Circuit Brands Disclosure-Only Settlement a “Racket” and Endorses Delaware Court of Chancery’s Stricter Standard for...

In a 2-1 decision, the Seventh Circuit has joined the Delaware Court of Chancery’s call for enhanced scrutiny of “disclosure-only” M&A settlements that involve no monetary benefits to shareholders. As previously discussed,...more

Seventh Circuit Criticizes Disclosure-Only M&A Litigation Settlements, Holding That Supplemental Proxy Disclosures Must Address...

In In re Walgreen Co. Stockholder Litigation, No. 14 C 9786, 2016 WL 4207962 (7th Cir. Aug. 10, 2016) (Posner, J.), the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued a highly charged opinion critical of an...more

SEC Approves Nasdaq Rule Requiring Disclosure of Third-Party Payments to Directors

New Nasdaq Rule 5250(b)(3) is a result of increased activist shareholder efforts to place representatives on public company boards of directors. During the past several years, activist shareholders have sought to nominate...more

SEC Approves NASDAQ “Golden Leash” Rules

Recently, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) approved NASDAQ’s new Rule 5250(b)(3), which requires NASDAQ-listed companies to publicly disclose any cash or non-cash payments made by third parties to any...more

SEC Approves Nasdaq “Golden Leash” Disclosure Rule

On July 1, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved Nasdaq’s proposal for a “golden leash” disclosure rule (Rule 5250(b)(3)) requiring listed companies to publicly disclose benefits given by investors or other...more

Acquisitions of Publicly Traded Corporations: A Cure for the Two Step in Texas

The State of Delaware recently adopted amendments, which will be effective on August 1, 2016, to an oft-used statute that streamlines the acquisition of a public Delaware corporation (the “Target”) structured as a tender...more

SEC Approves NASDAQ’s Proposed Rule on Golden Leash Arrangements

On July 1, 2016, the SEC approved NASDAQ’s proposed Rule 5250(b)(3), as amended by Amendment No. 2 filed on June 30, 2016 (the “Final Rule”), requiring NASDAQ-listed companies to publicly disclose third-party compensation...more

SEC Approves New Nasdaq Rule 5250(b): Disclosure of “Golden Leash” Arrangements

The SEC recently released an order approving new Nasdaq listing standard 5250(b)(3), which will require a public issuer to disclose cash and non-cash remuneration (e.g., health insurance, indemnification) that a third party...more

Typical SEC Comments on Merger Proxy Statements

A review of recent SEC comments on merger proxy statements indicates many of these comments were typical, and some are variations on a theme: Rule 14a-6(a) requires that the form of proxy be on file for ten calendar...more

SEC Approves NASDAQ Rule Requiring Disclosure of “Golden Leash” Arrangements

On July 1, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved a change to the NASDAQ Stock Market LLC’s Listing Rules that will require NASDAQ-listed companies to publicly disclose so-called “golden leash” arrangements....more

Blog: SEC Chair White Discusses SEC Coming Attraction: Board Diversity

In a speech last week to the International Corporate Governance Network Annual Conference, SEC Chair Mary Jo White announced that the Corp Fin staff is preparing a proposal to amend the current rule requiring board diversity...more

SEC Approves Nasdaq Golden Leash Disclosure Rule

The SEC has approved Nasdaq’s proposed Rule 5250(b)(3) regarding disclosure of so called golden leash arrangements. The Rule requires each listed company to publicly disclose the material terms of all agreements or...more

Mind the (Pay) Gap: Investor Requests for Reports on Gender Pay Disparities Are on the Rise

According to media reports, this year several high-profile companies, including Apple, Facebook, and Intel, have received or responded to proposals from investors requesting shareholder votes on the issue of whether the...more

"Delaware Supreme Court Provides Guidance on Aiding-and-Abetting Liability for Financial Advisors"

On November 30, 2015, the Delaware Supreme Court issued a much-anticipated opinion in RBC Capital Markets, LLC v. Jervis, No. 140, 2015, 129 A.3d 816 (Del. 2015). The Supreme Court unanimously affirmed the Court of Chancery’s...more

Court Of Chancery Resolves Appraisal Voting Requirement

It is well understood that to be entitled to the appraisal of your stock you need to not vote for the merger. However, in the complex world of how shares are held by beneficiaries and depositories, it is easy to overlook the...more

Fixing a Sour Corporate Culture: Valeant Pharmaceuticals Faces an Uphill Challenge

Like the Greek mythology character Sisyphus, Valeant Pharmaceutical is attempting to atone for its sins and turn its corporate culture around. I am not usually a cynic but when I see these transparent attempts to reverse a...more

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