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Court of Chancery Explains Options Cases

Weiss v. Swanson, C.A. No. 2828-VCL (Del Ch. March 7, 2008)

In the latest of the Chancery decisions on complaints challenging the grant of options, the Court has explained what it takes to state a derivative complaint that excuses demand on the Board. Briefly, the Court here focused on what was disclosed to the stockholders when they were asked to approve option plans or elect directors who had received option grants. First, full disclosure is required, particularly of practices that are likely to lead to increasing the value of the options, such as the bullet-dodging alleged in this case.

Second, the fact that a majority of the board received the options also made them interested enough to excuse demand.

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