Title

SEC Proposes Universal Proxy Cards
Client Memorandum

Created date

10/28/2016

On October 26, the Securities and Exchange Commission proposed long-expected changes to the proxy rules in order to mandate the use of universal proxy cards in contested elections at annual meetings. The proposal is designed to address the current inability of shareholders to vote for the combination of board nominees of their choice in an election involving a proxy contest. Under the proposal, each party in a contested election – management and one or more dissident shareholders – would continue to distribute its own proxy materials and use its own proxy card to solicit votes for its preferred slate of nominees. However, each party’s proxy card would be required to include the nominees of all parties, and thus enable the proxy voter to select its preferred combination of candidates.