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Corporate Governance

Delaware Order Helps Companies Change Shareholder Meeting Plans

April 7, 2020, 4:12 PM

Delaware’s governor is making it easier for public companies to change their shareholder meeting plans this year due to the coronavirus.

Gov. John Carney’s (D) April 6 order says companies incorporated in the state that have already announced in-person meetings can move them online by issuing a public filing and a press release, rather than sending a new written notice to investors. Companies can also delay their meetings that way.

Most public companies in the U.S. are incorporated in Delaware. The state’s order is similar to recent guidance from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which is letting companies announce virtual meetings without sending out a fresh proxy statement. Other states such as New York and New Jersey have also relaxed rules that limit online-only meetings with investors.

Companies are increasingly turning to virtual meetings this year to avoid gatherings that could spread the Covid-19 virus.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrea Vittorio in Washington at avittorio@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Roger Yu at ryu@bloomberglaw.com; Seth Stern at sstern@bloomberglaw.com

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