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Court of Chancery Limits When a Stockholder May Claim Appraisal

Posted In Appraisal

DiRienzo v. Steel Partners Holdings L.P., C.A. 4506-CC (December 08, 2009)

While it is well known that appraisal rights are limited to stockholders of record, sometimes stockholders do not really understand what it means to be "of record." They think if their name is on a brokerage statement, they are a "stockholder of record." Wrong! They must be listed on the records of the company to be "of record," and most stock in public entities is held by nominees, such as Cede & Co., to facilitate trading.

Here, the Court examines when the corporation is estopped by its conduct from denying appraisal rights and finds that the elements of waiver or estoppel are hard to establish and not present in this case.

Tags: Appraisal
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