Code of the District of Columbia

Subchapter V. Shareholders.


Part A. Meetings.

§ 29–305.01. Annual meeting.

(a) Unless directors are elected by written consent in lieu of an annual meeting as permitted by § 29-305.04, a corporation shall hold a meeting of shareholders annually at a time stated in or fixed in accordance with the bylaws. However, if a corporation’s articles of incorporation authorize shareholders to cumulate their votes when electing directors pursuant to § 29-305.28, directors shall not be elected by less than unanimous consent.

(b) Annual shareholders’ meetings may be held in or outside of the District at the place stated in or fixed in accordance with the bylaws. If no place is stated in or fixed in accordance with the bylaws, annual meetings shall be held at the corporation’s principal office.

(c) The failure to hold an annual meeting at the time stated in or fixed in accordance with a corporation’s bylaws shall not affect the validity of any corporate action.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)


§ 29–305.02. Special meeting.

(a) A corporation shall hold a special meeting of shareholders:

(1) On call of its board of directors or the person or persons authorized to do so by the articles of incorporation or bylaws; or

(2) Subject to subsection (b) of this section, if the holders of at least 10% of all the votes entitled to be cast on an issue proposed to be considered at the proposed special meeting sign, date, and deliver to the corporation one or more written demands for the meeting describing the purpose or purposes for which it is to be held; provided, that the articles of incorporation may fix a lower percentage or a higher percentage not exceeding 25% of all the votes entitled to be cast on any issue proposed to be considered.

(b) Unless otherwise provided in the articles of incorporation, a written demand for a special meeting may be revoked by a writing to that effect received by the corporation before the receipt by the corporation of demands sufficient in number to require the holding of a special meeting.

(c) If not otherwise fixed under § 29-305.03 or [§] 29-305.07, the record date for determining shareholders entitled to demand a special meeting is the date the first shareholder signs the demand.

(d) Special shareholders’ meetings may be held in or outside of the District at the place stated in or fixed in accordance with the bylaws. If no place is stated or fixed in accordance with the bylaws, special meetings must be held at the corporation’s principal office.

(e) Only business within the purpose or purposes described in the meeting notice required by § 29-305.05(c) may be conducted at a special shareholders’ meeting.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.03.


§ 29–305.03. Court-ordered meeting.

(a) The Superior Court may summarily order a meeting to be held on application of a shareholder:

(1) Entitled to participate in an annual meeting if an annual meeting was not held or action by written consent in lieu thereof did not become effective within the earlier of 6 months after the end of the corporation’s fiscal year or 15 months after its last annual meeting; or

(2) That signed a demand for a special meeting valid under § 29-305.02, if:

(A) Notice of the special meeting was not given within 30 days after the date the demand was delivered to the corporation’s secretary; or

(B) The special meeting was not held in accordance with the notice.

(b) The Superior Court may fix the time and place of the meeting, determine the shares entitled to participate in the meeting, specify a record date for determining shareholders entitled to notice of and to vote at the meeting, prescribe the form and content of the meeting notice, fix the quorum required for specific matters to be considered at the meeting, or direct that the votes represented at the meeting constitute a quorum for action on those matters, and enter other orders necessary to accomplish the purpose or purposes of the meeting.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.02 and § 29-305.05.


§ 29–305.04. Action without meeting.

(a) Action required or permitted by this chapter to be taken at a shareholders’ meeting may be taken without a meeting if the action is taken by all the shareholders entitled to vote on the action. The action shall be evidenced by one or more consents in a record bearing the date of signature and describing the action taken, signed by all the shareholders entitled to vote on the action and delivered to the corporation for inclusion in the minutes or filing with the corporate records.

(b) The articles of incorporation may provide that any action required or permitted by this chapter to be taken at a shareholders’ meeting may be taken without a meeting, and without prior notice, if consents in a record setting forth the action so taken are signed by the holders of outstanding shares having not less than the minimum number of votes that would be required to authorize or take the action at a meeting at which all shares entitled to vote on the action were present and voted. The consent in a record shall bear the date of signature of the shareholder that signs the consent and be delivered to the corporation for inclusion in the minutes or filing with the corporate records.

(c) If not otherwise fixed under § 29-305.07 and if prior board action is not required with respect to the action to be taken without a meeting, the record date for determining the shareholders entitled to take action without a meeting shall be the first date on which a signed consent in a record is delivered to the corporation. If not otherwise fixed under § 29-305.07 and if prior board action is required with respect to the action to be taken without a meeting, the record date shall be the close of business on the day the resolution of the board taking such prior action is adopted. No consent in a record is effective to take the corporate action referred to therein unless, within 60 days of the earliest date on which a consent delivered to the corporation as required by this section was signed, consents in a record signed by sufficient shareholders to take the action have been delivered to the corporation. A consent in a record may be revoked by a record to that effect delivered to the corporation before unrevoked consents in a record sufficient in number to take the corporate action are delivered to the corporation.

(d) A consent signed pursuant to this section shall have the effect of a vote taken at a meeting and may be described as such in any document. Unless the articles of incorporation, bylaws, or a resolution of the board of directors provides for a reasonable delay to permit tabulation of consents in a record, the action taken by consent in a record shall be effective when consents in a record signed by sufficient shareholders to take the action are delivered to the corporation.

(e)(1) If this chapter requires that notice of a proposed action be given to nonvoting shareholders and the action is to be taken by consent in a record of the voting shareholders, the corporation shall give its nonvoting shareholders notice in a record of the action not more than 10 days after:

(A) Consents in a record sufficient to take the action have been delivered to the corporation; or

(B) Such later date that tabulation of consents is completed pursuant to an authorization under subsection (d) of this section.

(2) The notice under paragraph (1) of this subsection shall reasonably describe the action taken and contain or be accompanied by the same material that, under any provision of this chapter, would have been required to be sent to nonvoting shareholders in a notice of a meeting at which the proposed action would have been submitted to the shareholders for action.

(f)(1) If action is taken by less than unanimous consent in a record of the voting shareholders, the corporation shall give its nonconsenting voting shareholders written notice of the action not more than 10 days after:

(A) Consents in a record sufficient to take the action have been delivered to the corporation; or

(B) Such later date that tabulation of consents is completed pursuant to an authorization under subsection (d) of this section.

(2) The notice under paragraph (1) of this subsection shall reasonably describe the action taken and contain or be accompanied by the same material that, under any provision of this chapter, would have been required to be sent to voting shareholders in a notice of a meeting at which the action would have been submitted to the shareholders for action.

(g) The notice requirements in subsections (e) and (f) shall not delay the effectiveness of actions taken by consent in a record and a failure to comply with such notice requirements shall not invalidate actions taken by consent in a record; provided, that this subsection shall not limit judicial power to fashion any appropriate remedy in favor of a shareholder adversely affected by a failure to give the notice within the required time period.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(7), 59 DCR 13171.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.01, § 29-311.10, and § 29-311.50.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 rewrote the section.

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.05. Notice of meeting.

(a) A corporation shall notify shareholders of the date, time, and place of each annual and special shareholders’ meeting no less than 10, or more than, 60 days before the meeting date. If the board of directors has authorized participation by means of remote communication pursuant to § 29-305.09 for any class or series of shareholders, the notice to such class or series of shareholders shall describe the means of remote communication to be used. Unless this chapter or the articles of incorporation require otherwise, the corporation shall give notice only to shareholders entitled to vote at the meeting.

(b) Unless this chapter or the articles of incorporation require otherwise, notice of an annual meeting need not include a description of the purpose or purposes for which the meeting is called.

(c) Notice of a special meeting shall include a description of the purpose or purposes for which the meeting is called.

(d) If not otherwise fixed under § 29-305.03 or [§] 29-305.07, the record date for determining shareholders entitled to notice of and to vote at an annual or special shareholders’ meeting shall be the day before the 1st notice is delivered to shareholders.

(e) Unless the bylaws require otherwise, if an annual or special shareholders’ meeting is adjourned to a different date, time, or place, notice need not be given of the new date, time, or place if the new date, time, or place is announced at the meeting before adjournment; provided, that if a new record date for the adjourned meeting is or must be fixed under § 29-305.07, notice of the adjourned meeting shall be given under this section to persons that are shareholders as of the new record date.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(8), 59 DCR 13171.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.02.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 added the second sentence in (a).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.06. Waiver of notice.

(a) A shareholder may waive any notice required by this chapter, the articles of incorporation, or bylaws before or after the date and time stated in the notice. The waiver shall be in a record, be signed by the shareholder entitled to the notice, and be delivered to the corporation for inclusion in the minutes or filing with the corporate records.

(b) A shareholder’s attendance at a meeting waives object to:

(1) Lack of notice or defective notice of the meeting, unless the shareholder, at the beginning of the meeting, objects to holding the meeting or transacting business at the meeting; and

(2) Consideration of a particular matter at the meeting that is not within the purpose described in the meeting notice, unless the shareholder objects to considering the matter when it is presented.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(9), 59 DCR 13171.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 substituted “in a record” for “in writing” in (a).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.07. Record date.

(a) The bylaws may fix or provide the manner of fixing the record date for one or more voting groups to determine the shareholders entitled to notice of a shareholders’ meeting, to demand a special meeting, to vote, or to take any other action. If the bylaws do not fix or provide for fixing a record date, the board of directors of the corporation may fix a future date as the record date.

(b) A record date fixed under this section shall not be more than 70 days before the meeting or action requiring a determination of shareholders.

(c) A determination of shareholders entitled to notice of or to vote at a shareholders’ meeting shall be effective for any adjournment of the meeting unless the board of directors fixes a new record date, which it shall do if the meeting is adjourned to a date more than 120 days after the date fixed for the original meeting.

(d) If a Superior Court orders a meeting adjourned to a date more than 120 days after the date fixed for the original meeting, it may provide that the original record date continues in effect or it may fix a new record date.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.02, § 29-305.04, and § 29-305.05.


§ 29–305.08. Conduct of the meeting.

(a) At each meeting of shareholders, a chair shall preside. The chair shall be appointed as provided in the bylaws or, in the absence of such provision, by the board.

(b) The chair, unless the articles of incorporation or bylaws provide otherwise, shall determine the order of business and may establish rules for the conduct of the meeting.

(c) Any rules adopted for, and the conduct of, the meeting shall be fair to shareholders.

(d) The chair of the meeting shall announce at the meeting when the polls close for each matter voted upon. If no announcement is made, the polls shall be deemed to have closed upon the final adjournment of the meeting. After the polls close, no ballots, proxies, or votes, or any revocations or changes thereto, shall be accepted.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)


§ 29–305.09. Remote participation in annual and special meetings.

(a) Shareholders of any class or series may participate in any meeting of shareholders by means of remote communication to the extent the board of directors authorizes such participation for such class or series. Participation by means of remote communication shall be subject to such guidelines and procedures as the board of directors adopts, and shall be in conformity with subsection (b) of this section.

(b) Shareholders participating in a shareholders’ meeting by means of remote communication shall be deemed present and may vote at such a meeting if the corporation has implemented reasonable measures:

(1) To verify that each person participating remotely is a shareholder; and

(2) To provide such shareholders a reasonable opportunity to participate in the meeting and to vote, including the opportunity to communicate with other shareholders participating in the meeting and to read or hear the proceedings of the meeting as the meeting is taking place.


(Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(10), 59 DCR 13171.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.05, § 29-910, § 29-911, and § 29-912.

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


Part B. Voting.

§ 29–305.20. Shareholders’ list for meeting.

(a) After fixing a record date for a meeting, a corporation shall prepare an alphabetical list of the names of all its shareholders that are entitled to notice of a shareholders’ meeting. The list shall:

(1) Be arranged by voting group and, within each voting group, by class or series; and

(2) Show the address of and number of shares held by each shareholder.

(b) The shareholders’ list must be available for inspection by any shareholder, beginning 2 business days after notice of the meeting is given for which the list was prepared and continuing through the meeting, at the corporation’s principal office or at a place identified in the meeting notice in the city where the meeting will be held. A shareholder, or the shareholder’s agent or attorney, shall be entitled on demand in record to inspect and, subject to § 29-313.02(c), to copy the list, during regular business hours and at the shareholder’s expense, during the period it is available for inspection.

(c) The corporation shall make the shareholders’ list available at the meeting and any shareholder, or the shareholder’s agent or attorney, shall be entitled to inspect the list at any time during the meeting or any adjournment.

(d) If the corporation refuses to allow a shareholder, or the shareholder’s agent or attorney, to inspect the shareholders’ list before or at the meeting, or copy the list as permitted by subsection (b) of this section, the Superior Court, on application of the shareholder, may summarily order the inspection or copying at the corporation’s expense and may postpone the meeting for which the list was prepared until the inspection or copying is complete.

(e) Refusal or failure to prepare or make available the shareholders’ list shall not affect the validity of action taken at the meeting.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(11), 59 DCR 13171.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-313.02.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 substituted “demand in record” for “written demand” in (b).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.21. Voting entitlement of shares.

(a) Except as otherwise provided in subsections (b) and (d) of this section or unless the articles of incorporation provide otherwise, each outstanding share, regardless of class, shall be entitled to one vote on each matter voted on at a shareholders’ meeting. Only shares shall be entitled to vote.

(b) Absent special circumstances, the shares of a corporation shall not be entitled to vote if they are owned, directly or indirectly, by a second corporation, domestic or foreign, and the first corporation owns, directly or indirectly, a majority of the shares entitled to vote for directors of the second corporation.

(c) Subsection (b) of this section shall not limit the power of a corporation to vote any shares, including its own shares, held by it in a fiduciary capacity.

(d) Redeemable shares shall not be entitled to vote after notice of redemption is mailed to the holders and a sum sufficient to redeem the shares has been deposited with a bank, trust company, or other financial institution under an irrevocable obligation to pay the holders the redemption price on surrender of the shares.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)


§ 29–305.22. Proxies.

(a) A shareholder may vote the shareholder’s shares in person or by proxy.

(b) An appointment of a proxy shall be effective when a signed appointment form or an electronic transmission of the appointment is received by the inspector of election or the officer or agent of the corporation authorized to tabulate votes. An appointment is valid for 11 months unless a longer period is expressly provided in the appointment form.

(c) An appointment of a proxy shall be revocable unless the appointment form or electronic transmission states that it is irrevocable and the appointment is coupled with an interest. Appointments coupled with an interest shall include the appointment of:

(1) A pledgee;

(2) A person that purchased or agreed to purchase the shares;

(3) A creditor of the corporation that extended it credit under terms requiring the appointment;

(4) An employee of the corporation whose employment contract requires the appointment; or

(5) A party to a voting agreement created under § 29-305.41.

(d) The death or incapacity of the shareholder appointing a proxy shall not affect the right of the corporation to accept the proxy’s authority unless notice of the death or incapacity is received by the secretary or other officer or agent authorized to tabulate votes before the proxy exercises authority under the appointment.

(e) An appointment made irrevocable under subsection (d) of this section shall be revoked when the interest with which it is coupled is extinguished.

(f) A transferee for value of shares subject to an irrevocable appointment may revoke the appointment if the transferee did not know of its existence when acquiring the shares and the existence of the irrevocable appointment was not noted conspicuously on the certificate representing the shares or on the information statement for shares without certificates.

(g) Subject to § 29-305.24 and to any express limitation on the proxy’s authority stated in the appointment form or electronic transmission, a corporation shall be entitled to accept the proxy’s vote or other action as that of the shareholder making the appointment.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(12), 59 DCR 13171.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 repealed former (b), which read: “A shareholder, or the shareholder’s agent or attorney-in-fact, may appoint a proxy to vote or otherwise act for the shareholder by signing an appointment form or by an electronic transmission. An electronic transmission shall contain or be accompanied by information from which one can determine that the shareholder, the shareholder’s agent, or the shareholder’s attorney-in-fact authorized the transmission.”; and redesignated (c) through (h) as (b) through (g), respectively.

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.23. Shares held by nominees.

(a) A corporation may establish a procedure by which the beneficial owner of shares that are registered in the name of a nominee is recognized by the corporation as the shareholder. The extent of this recognition may be determined in the procedure.

(b) The procedure may set forth:

(1) The types of nominees to which it applies;

(2) The rights or privileges that the corporation recognizes in a beneficial owner;

(3) The manner in which the procedure is selected by the nominee;

(4) The information that must be provided when the procedure is selected;

(5) The period for which selection of the procedure is effective; and

(6) Other aspects of the rights and duties created.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)


§ 29–305.24. Corporation’s acceptance of votes.

(a) If the name signed on a vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment corresponds to the name of a shareholder, the corporation, if acting in good faith, shall be entitled to accept the vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment and give it effect as the act of the shareholder.

(b) If the name signed on a vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment does not correspond to the name of its shareholder, the corporation if acting in good faith may nevertheless accept the vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment and give it effect as the act of the shareholder if:

(1) The shareholder is an entity and the name signed purports to be that of an officer or agent of the entity;

(2) The name signed purports to be that of an administrator, executor, guardian, or conservator representing the shareholder and, if the corporation requests, evidence of fiduciary status acceptable to the corporation has been presented with respect to the vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment;

(3) The name signed purports to be that of a receiver or trustee in bankruptcy of the shareholder and, if the corporation requests, evidence of this status acceptable to the corporation has been presented with respect to the vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment;

(4) The name signed purports to be that of a pledgee, beneficial owner, or attorney-in-fact of the shareholder and, if the corporation requests, evidence acceptable to the corporation of the signatory’s authority to sign for the shareholder has been presented with respect to the vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment; or

(5) Two or more persons are the shareholder as co-tenants or fiduciaries and the name signed purports to be the name of at least one of the co-owners and the person signing appears to be acting on behalf of all the co-owners.

(c) The corporation may reject a vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment if the secretary or other officer or agent authorized to tabulate votes, acting in good faith, has reasonable basis for doubt about the validity of the signature on it or about the signatory’s authority to sign for the shareholder.

(d) The corporation and its officer or agent who accepts or rejects a vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment in good faith and in accordance with the standards of this section or § 29-301.03(d) shall not be liable in damages to the shareholder for the consequences of the acceptance or rejection.

(e) Corporate action based on the acceptance or rejection of a vote, consent, waiver, or proxy appointment under this section shall be valid unless the Superior Court determines otherwise.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(13), 59 DCR 13171.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.22.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 substituted “§ 29-301.03(d)” for “§ 29-305.22(b)” in (d).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.25. Quorum and voting requirements for voting groups.

(a) Shares entitled to vote as a separate voting group may take action on a matter at a meeting only if a quorum of those shares exists with respect to that matter. Unless the articles of incorporation provides otherwise, a majority of the votes entitled to be cast on the matter by the voting group constitutes a quorum of that voting group for action on that matter.

(b) Once a share is represented for any purpose at a meeting, it shall be deemed present for quorum purposes for the remainder of the meeting and for any adjournment of that meeting unless a new record date is or must be set for that adjourned meeting.

(c) If a quorum exists, action on a matter, other than the election of directors, by a voting group shall be approved if the votes cast within the voting group favoring the action exceed the votes cast opposing the action, unless the articles of incorporation require a greater number of affirmative votes.

(d) An amendment of articles of incorporation adding, changing, or deleting a quorum or voting requirement for a voting group greater than specified in subsection (a) or (c) of this section shall be governed by § 29-305.27.

(e) The election of directors shall be governed by § 29-305.28.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.26.


§ 29–305.26. Action by single and multiple voting groups.

(a) If the articles of incorporation or this chapter provide for voting by a single voting group on a matter, action on that matter is taken when voted upon by that voting group as provided in § 29-305.25.

(b) If the articles of incorporation or this chapter provide for voting by 2 or more voting groups on a matter, action on that matter is taken only when voted upon by each of those voting groups counted separately as provided in § 29-305.25. Action may be taken by one voting group on a matter even though no action is taken by another voting group entitled to vote on the matter.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)


§ 29–305.27. Greater quorum or voting requirements.

(a) The articles of incorporation may provide for a greater quorum or voting requirement for shareholders, or voting groups of shareholders, than is provided for by this chapter.

(b) An amendment to the articles of incorporation that adds, changes, or deletes a greater quorum or voting requirement shall meet the same quorum requirement and be adopted by the same vote and voting groups required to take action under the quorum and voting requirements then in effect or proposed to be adopted, whichever is greater.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.25.


§ 29–305.28. Voting for directors; cumulative voting.

(a) Unless otherwise provided in the articles of incorporation, directors shall be elected by a plurality of the votes cast by the shares entitled to vote in the election at a meeting at which a quorum is present.

(b) Shareholders shall not have a right to cumulate their votes for directors unless the articles of incorporation so provide.

(c) A statement included in the articles of incorporation that “all” or “a designated voting group” “of shareholders are entitled to cumulate their votes for directors”, or words of similar import, means that the shareholders designated are entitled to multiply the number of votes they are entitled to cast by the number of directors for whom they are entitled to vote and cast the product for a single candidate or distribute the product among 2 or more candidates.

(d) Shares otherwise entitled to vote cumulatively shall not be voted cumulatively at a particular meeting unless:

(1) The meeting notice or proxy statement accompanying the notice states conspicuously that cumulative voting is authorized; or

(2)(A) A shareholder that has the right to cumulate his votes gives notice to the corporation not less than 48 hours before the time set for the meeting of the shareholder’s intent to cumulate votes during the meeting.

(B) If one shareholder gives this notice, all other shareholders in the same voting group participating in the election shall be entitled to cumulate their votes without giving further notice.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.01, § 29-305.25, and § 29-308.22.


§ 29–305.29. Inspectors of election.

(a) A public corporation shall, and any other corporation may, appoint one or more inspectors to act at a meeting of shareholders and make a written report of the inspectors’ determinations. Each inspector shall take and sign an oath faithfully to execute the duties of inspector with strict impartiality and according to the best of the inspector’s ability.

(b) The inspectors shall:

(1) Ascertain the number of shares outstanding and the voting power of each;

(2) Determine the shares represented at a meeting;

(3) Determine the validity of proxies and ballots;

(4) Count all votes; and

(5) Determine the result.

(c) An inspector may be an officer or employee of the corporation.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-308.22.


Part C. Voting Trusts and Agreements.

§ 29–305.40. Voting trusts.

(a) One or more shareholders may create a voting trust, conferring on a trustee the right to vote or otherwise act for them, by signing an agreement setting out the provisions of the trust, which may include anything consistent with its purpose, and transferring their shares to the trustee. When a voting trust agreement is signed, the trustee shall prepare a list of the names and addresses of all owners of beneficial interests in the trust, together with the number and class of shares each transferred to the trust, and deliver copies of the list and agreement to the corporation’s principal office.

(b) A voting trust shall be effective on the date the 1st shares subject to the trust are registered in the trustee’s name. A voting trust shall not be valid for not more than 10 years after its effective date unless extended under subsection (c) of this section.

(c) All or some of the parties to a voting trust may extend it for additional terms of not more than 10 years each by signing written consent to the extension. An extension shall be valid for 10 years after the date the 1st shareholder signs the extension agreement. The voting trustee shall deliver copies of the extension agreement and list of beneficial owners to the corporation’s principal office. An extension agreement binds only those parties signing it.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.41.


§ 29–305.41. Voting agreements.

(a) Two or more shareholders may provide for the manner in which they will vote their shares by signing an agreement for that purpose. A voting agreement created under this section shall not be subject to § 29-305.40.

(b) A voting agreement created under this section shall be specifically enforceable.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.22.


§ 29–305.42. Shareholder agreements.

(a) An agreement among the shareholders of a corporation that complies with this section shall be effective among the shareholders and the corporation even though it is inconsistent with one or more other provisions of this chapter in that it:

(1) Eliminates the board of directors or restricts the discretion or powers of the board of directors;

(2) Governs the authorization or making of distributions whether or not in proportion to ownership of shares, subject to the limitations in § 29-304.60;

(3) Establishes who will be directors or officers of the corporation, their terms of office, or manner of their selection or removal;

(4) Governs, in general or in regard to specific matters, the exercise or division of voting power by or between the shareholders and directors or by or among any of them, including use of weighted voting rights or director proxies;

(5) Establishes the terms and conditions of any agreement for the transfer or use of property or the provision of services between the corporation and any shareholder, director, officer, or employee of the corporation or among any of them;

(6) Transfers to one or more shareholders or other persons all or part of the authority to exercise the corporate powers or to manage the activities and affairs of the corporation, including the resolution of any issue about which there exists a deadlock among directors or shareholders;

(7) Requires dissolution of the corporation at the request of one or more of the shareholders or upon the occurrence of a specified event or contingency; or

(8) Otherwise governs the exercise of the corporate powers or the management of the activities and affairs of the corporation or the relationship among the shareholders, the directors, and the corporation, or among any of them, and is not contrary to public policy.

(b) An agreement authorized by this section shall be:

(1) Set forth in:

(A) The articles of incorporation or bylaws and approved by all persons that are shareholders at the time of the agreement; or

(B) A written agreement that is signed by all persons that are shareholders at the time of the agreement and is made known to the corporation;

(2) Subject to amendment only by all persons that are shareholders at the time of the amendment, unless the agreement provides otherwise; and

(3) Valid for 10 years, unless the agreement provides otherwise.

(c) The existence of an agreement authorized by this section shall be noted conspicuously on the front or back of each certificate for outstanding shares or on the information statement required by § 29-304.26(b). If, at the time of the agreement, the corporation has shares outstanding represented by certificates, the corporation shall recall the outstanding certificates and issue substitute certificates that comply with this subsection. The failure to note the existence of the agreement on the certificate or information statement shall not affect the validity of the agreement or any action taken pursuant to it. Any purchaser of shares that, at the time of purchase, did not have knowledge of the existence of the agreement may rescind the purchase. A purchaser shall be deemed to have knowledge of the existence of the agreement if its existence is noted on the certificate or information statement for the shares in compliance with this subsection and, if the shares are not represented by a certificate, the information statement is delivered to the purchaser at or prior to the time of purchase of the shares. An action to enforce the right of rescission authorized by this subsection shall be commenced within the earlier of 90 days after discovery of the existence of the agreement or 2 years after the time of purchase of the shares.

(d) An agreement authorized by this section shall cease to be effective when the corporation becomes a public corporation. If the agreement ceases to be effective for any reason, the board of directors may, if the agreement is contained or referred to in the corporation’s articles of incorporation or bylaws, adopt an amendment to the articles of incorporation or bylaws, without shareholder action, to delete the agreement and any references to it.

(e) An agreement authorized by this section that limits the discretion or powers of the board of directors relieves the directors of, and imposes upon the person or persons in which the discretion or powers are vested, liability for acts or omissions imposed by law on directors to the extent that the discretion or powers of the directors are limited by the agreement.

(f) The existence or performance of an agreement authorized by this section shall not be a ground for imposing personal liability on any shareholder for the acts or debts of the corporation even if the agreement or its performance treats the corporation as if it were a partnership or results in failure to observe the corporate formalities otherwise applicable to the matters governed by the agreement.

(g) Incorporators or subscribers for shares may act as shareholders with respect to an agreement authorized by this section if no shares have been issued when the agreement is made.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(14), 59 DCR 13171.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-306.01 and § 29-1303.02.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 substituted “activities” for “business” in (a)(6) and (a)(8).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


Part D. Derivative Proceedings.

§ 29–305.50. Definitions.

For the purposes of this part, the term:

(1) “Derivative proceeding” means a civil action in the right of a domestic corporation or, to the extent provided in § 29-305.57, in the right of a foreign corporation.

(2) “Shareholder” includes a beneficial owner whose shares are held in a voting trust or held by a nominee on the beneficial owner’s behalf.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)


§ 29–305.51. Standing.

A shareholder shall not commence or maintain a derivative proceeding unless the shareholder:

(1) Was a shareholder of the corporation at the time of the act or omission complained of or became a shareholder through transfer by operation of law from one that was a shareholder at that time; and

(2) Fairly and adequately represents the interests of the corporation in enforcing the right of the corporation.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-306.09.


§ 29–305.52. Demand.

A shareholder shall not commence a derivative proceeding until:

(1) A written demand has been made upon the corporation to take suitable action; and

(2) Ninety days have expired from the date the delivery of the demand was made unless

(A) The shareholder has earlier been notified that the demand has been rejected by the corporation; or

(B) Irreparable injury to the corporation would result by waiting for the expiration of the 90-day period.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(15), 59 DCR 13171.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 substituted “the delivery of the demand” for “the demand” in (2).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.


§ 29–305.53. Stay of proceedings.

If the corporation commences an inquiry into the allegations made in the demand or complaint, the Superior Court may stay any derivative proceeding for such period as the court consider appropriate.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.57.


§ 29–305.54. Dismissal.

(a) The Superior Court shall dismiss a derivative proceeding on motion by the corporation if one of the groups specified in subsection (b) or subsection (e) of this section has determined in good faith, after conducting a reasonable inquiry upon which its conclusions are based, that the maintenance of the derivative proceeding is not in the best interests of the corporation.

(b) Unless a panel is appointed pursuant to subsection (e) of this section, the determination in subsection (a) of this section shall be made by a majority vote of:

(1) Qualified directors present at a meeting of the board of directors if the qualified directors constitute a quorum; or

(2) A committee consisting of 2 or more qualified directors appointed by majority vote of qualified directors present at a meeting of the board of directors, regardless of whether the qualified directors constitute a quorum.

(c) If a derivative proceeding is commenced after a determination has been made rejecting a demand by a shareholder, the complaint shall allege with particularity facts establishing that:

(1) A majority of the board of directors did not consist of qualified directors at the time the determination was made; or

(2) The requirements of subsection (a) of this section have not been met.

(d) If a majority of the board of directors consisted of qualified directors at the time the determination was made, the plaintiff shall have the burden of proving that the requirements of subsection (a) of this section have not been met. Otherwise, the corporation has the burden of proving that the requirements of subsection (a) of this section have been met.

(e) Upon motion by the corporation, the Superior Court may appoint a panel of one or more individuals to make a determination whether the maintenance of the derivative proceeding is in the best interests of the corporation. In such case, the plaintiff has the burden of proving that the requirements of subsection (a) of this section have not been met.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-301.21.


§ 29–305.55. Discontinuance or settlement.

A derivative proceeding shall not be discontinued or settled without the Superior Court’s approval. If the court determines that a proposed discontinuance or settlement will substantially affect the interests of the corporation’s shareholders or a class of shareholders, the court shall direct that notice be given to the shareholders affected.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.57.


§ 29–305.56. Payment of expenses.

On termination of the derivative proceeding, the Superior Court may order:

(1) The corporation to pay the plaintiff’s expenses incurred in the proceeding if it finds that the proceeding has resulted in a substantial benefit to the corporation;

(2) The plaintiff to pay any defendant’s expenses incurred in defending the proceeding if it finds that the proceeding was commenced or maintained without reasonable cause or for an improper purpose; or

(3) A party to pay an opposing party’s expenses incurred because of the filing of a pleading, motion, or other paper if it finds that the pleading, motion, or other paper was not well grounded in fact, after reasonable inquiry, or warranted by existing law or a good faith argument for the extension, modification, or reversal of existing law and was interposed for an improper purpose, such as to harass or cause unnecessary delay or needless increase in the cost of litigation.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.57.


§ 29–305.57. Applicability to foreign corporations.

In any derivative proceeding in the right of a foreign corporation, the matters covered by this part shall be governed by the laws of the jurisdiction of incorporation of the foreign corporation, except for §§ 29-305.53, 29-305.55, and 29-305.56.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 29-305.50.


Part E. Proceeding to Appoint Custodian or Receiver.

§ 29–305.70. Shareholder action to appoint custodian or receiver.

(a) The Superior Court may appoint one or more persons to be custodians or, if the corporation is insolvent, to be receivers, of and for a corporation in a proceeding by a shareholder if it is established that:

(1) The directors are deadlocked in the management of the corporate affairs, the shareholders are unable to break the deadlock, and irreparable injury to the corporation is threatened or being suffered; or

(2) The directors or those in control of the corporation are acting fraudulently and irreparable injury to the corporation is threatened or being suffered.

(b) The Superior Court:

(1) May issue injunctions, appoint a temporary custodian or temporary receiver with all the powers and duties the court directs, take other action to preserve the corporate assets wherever located, and carry on the business of the corporation until a full hearing is held;

(2) Shall hold a full hearing, after notifying all parties to the proceeding and any interested persons designated by the court, before appointing a custodian or receiver; and

(3) Shall have jurisdiction over the corporation and all of its property, wherever located.

(c) The Superior Court may appoint an individual or domestic or foreign corporation, authorized to do business in the District, as a custodian or receiver and may require the custodian or receiver to post bond, with or without sureties, in an amount the court directs.

(d) The Superior Court shall describe the powers and duties of the custodian or receiver in its appointing order, which may be amended. Among other powers:

(1) A custodian may exercise all of the powers of the corporation, through or in place of its board of directors, to the extent necessary to manage the activities and affairs of the corporation; and

(2) A receiver may:

(A) Dispose of all or any part of the assets of the corporation wherever located, at a public or private sale, if authorized by the court; and

(B) Sue and defend in the receiver’s own name as receiver.

(e) The Superior Court during a custodianship may redesignate the custodian a receiver and, during a receivership, may redesignate the receiver a custodian, if doing so is in the best interests of the corporation.

(f) The Superior Court, during the custodianship or receivership, may order compensation paid and expense disbursements or reimbursements made to the custodian or receiver from the assets of the corporation or proceeds from the sale of its assets.


(July 2, 2011, D.C. Law 18-378, § 2, 58 DCR 1720; Mar. 5, 2013, D.C. Law 19-210, § 2(c)(16), 59 DCR 13171.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-210 substituted “activities” for “business” in (d)(1).

Editor's Notes

Application of Law 19-210: Section 7 of D.C. Law 19-210 provided that the act shall apply as of January 1, 2012.