15 rules requiring stockholders' vote under the Revised Corporation Code

Under Republic Act No. 11232, otherwise known as the Revised Corporation Code of the Philippines which took effect in 2019, the following are instances where the direct vote of the stockholders is needed. Normally, the corporation is driven by a Board of Directors (or of Trustees, in case of non-stock corporations). However, there are instances wherein the law requires not only board approval by the direct approving vote of the stockholders or members.[1] Corporations with certificates of incorporation issued prior to the effectivity of the Revised Code, and which continue to exist, shall have perpetual existence, unless the corporation, upon a vote of its stockholders representing a majority of its outstanding capital stock, notifies the Securities and Exchange Commission that it elects to retain its specific corporate term pursuant to its articles of incorporation: Provided, That any change in the corporate term under this section is without prejudice to the appraisal right of dissenting stockholders in accordance with the provisions of this Code. (Section 11)

[2] Unless otherwise prescribed by the Code or by special law, and for legitimate purposes, any provision or matter stated in the articles of incorporation may be amended by a majority vote of the board of directors or trustees and the vote or written assent of the stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock, without prejudice to the appraisal right of dissenting stockholders in accordance with the provisions of the Code. The articles of incorporation of a nonstock corporation may be amended by the vote or written assent of majority of the trustees and at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members. (Section 15)

[3] Any director or trustee of a corporation may be removed from office by a vote of the stockholders holding or representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock, or in a nonstock corporation, by a vote of at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members entitled to vote: Provided, That such removal shall take place either at a regular meeting of the corporation or at a special meeting called for the purpose, and in either case, after previous notice to stockholders or members of the corporation of the intention to propose such removal at the meeting. A special meeting of the stockholders or members for the purpose of removing any director or trustee must be called by the secretary on order of the president, or upon written demand of the stockholders representing or holding at least a majority of the outstanding capital stock, or a majority of the members entitled to vote. If there is no secretary, or if the secretary, despite demand, fails or refuses to call the special meeting or to give notice thereof, the stockholder or member of the corporation signing the demand may call for the meeting by directly addressing the stockholders or members. Notice of the time and place of such meeting, as well as of the intention to propose such removal, must be given by publication or by written notice prescribed in this Code. Removal may be with or without cause: Provided, That removal without cause may not be used to deprive minority stockholders or members of the right of representation to which they may be entitled under Section 23 of this Code. (Section 27)

[4] In the absence of any provision in the bylaws fixing their compensation, the directors or trustees shall not receive any compensation in their capacity as such, except for reasonable per diems: Provided, however, That the stockholders representing at least a majority of the outstanding capital stock or majority of the members may grant directors or trustees with compensation and approve the amount thereof at a regular or special meeting. (Section 29)

[5] A contract of the corporation with one (1) or more of its directors, trustees, officers or their spouses and relatives within the fourth civil degree of consanguinity or affinity is voidable, at the option of such corporation, unless all the following conditions are present:
 
(a) The presence of such director or trustee in the board meeting in which the contract was approved was not necessary to constitute a quorum for such meeting;
(b) The vote of such director or trustee was not necessary for the approval of the contract;
(c) The contract is fair and reasonable under the circumstances;
(d) In case of corporations vested with public interest, material contracts are approved by at least two-thirds (2/3) of the entire membership of the board, with at least a majority of the independent directors voting to approve the material contract; and
(e) In case of an officer, the contract has been previously authorized by the board of directors.
 
Where any of the first three (3) conditions set forth in the preceding paragraph is absent, in the case of a contract with a director or trustee, such contract may be ratified by the vote of the stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock or of at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members in a meeting called for the purpose: Provided, That full disclosure of the adverse interest of the directors or trustees involved is made at such meeting and the contract is fair and reasonable under the circumstances. (Section 31)

[6] All stockholders of a stock corporation shall enjoy preemptive right to subscribe to all issues or disposition of shares of any class, in proportion to their respective shareholdings, unless such right is denied by the articles of incorporation or an amendment thereto: Provided, That such preemptive right shall not extend to shares issued in compliance with laws requiring stock offerings or minimum stock ownership by the public; or to shares issued in good faith with the approval of the stockholders representing two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock, in exchange for property needed fo£ corporate purposes or in payment of a previously contracted debt. (Section 38)

[7] Subject to the provisions of Republic Act No. 10667, otherwise known as the "Philippine Competition Act", and other related laws, a corporation may, by a majority vote of its board of directors or trustees, sell, lease, exchange, mortgage, pledge, or otherwise dispose of its properly and assets, upon such terms and conditions and for such consideration, which may be money, stocks, bonds, or other instruments for the payment of money or other property or consideration, as its board of directors or trustees may deem expedient.
 
A sale of all or substantially all of the corporation's properties and assets, including its goodwill, must be authorized by the vote of the stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock, or at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members, in a stockholders' or members' meeting duly called for the purpose.
 
In nonstock corporations where there are no members with voting rights, the vote of at least a majority of the trustees in office will be sufficient authorization for the corporation to enter into any transaction authorized by this section. (Section 39)

[8] Subject to the provisions of this Code, a private corporation may invest its funds in any other corporation, business, or for any purpose other than the primary purpose for which it was organized, when approved by a majority of the board of directors or trustees and ratified by the stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock, or by at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members in the case of nonstock corporations, at a meeting duly called for the purpose. Notice of the proposed investment and the time and place of the meeting shall be addressed to each stockholder or member at the place of residence as shown in the books of the corporation and deposited to the addressee in the post office with postage prepaid, served personally, Or sent electronically in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Commission on the use of electronic data message, when allowed by the bylaws or done with the consent of the stockholders: Provided, That any dissenting stockholder shall have appraisal right as provided in this Code: Provided, however, That where the investment by the corporation is reasonably necessary to accomplish its primary purpose as stated in the articles of incorporation, the approval of the stockholders or members shall not be necessary. (Section 41)

[9] The board of directors of a stock corporation may declare dividends out of the unrestricted retained earnings which shall be payable in cash, property, or in stock to all stockholders on the basis of outstanding stock held by them: Provided, That any cash dividends due on delinquent stock shall first be applied to the unpaid balance on the subscription plus costs and expenses, while stock dividends shall be withheld from the delinquent stockholders until their unpaid subscription is fully paid: Provided, further, That no stock dividend shall be issued without the approval of stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock at a regular or special meeting duly called for the purpose. (Section 42)

[10] No corporation shall conclude a management contract with another corporation unless such contract is approved by the board of directors and by stockholders owning at least the majority of the outstanding capital stock, or by at least a majority of the members in the case of a nonstock corporation, of both the managing and the managed corporation, at a meeting duly called for the purpose: Provided, That (a) where a stockholder or stockholders representing the same interest of both the managing and the managed corporations own or control more than one-third (1/3) of the total outstanding capital stock entitled to vote of the managing corporation; or (b) where a majority of the- members of the board of directors of the managing corporation also constitute a majority of the members of the board of directors of the managed corporation, then the management contract must be approved by the ^Stockholders of the managed corporation owning at least two-thirds (2/3) of the total outstanding capital stock entitled to vote, or by at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members in the case of a nonstock corporation. (Section 43)

[11] For the adoption of bylaws by the corporation, the affirmative vote of the stockholders representing at least a majority of the outstanding capital stock, or of at least a majority of the members in case of nonstock corporations, shall be necessary. The bylaws shall be signed by the stockholders or members voting for them and shall be kept in the principal office of the corporation, subject to the inspection of the stockholders or members during office hours. A copy thereof, duly certified by a majority of the directors or trustees and countersigned by the secretary of the corporation, shall be filed with the Commission and attached to the original articles of incorporation. (Section 45)

[12] Unless otherwise provided in this Code or in the bylaws, a quorum shall consist of the stockholders representing a majority of the outstanding capital stock or a majority of the members in the case of nonstock corporations.

[13] The issued price of no-par value shares may be fixed in the articles of incorporation or by the board of directors pursuant to authority conferred by the articles of incorporation or the bylaws, or if not so fixed, by the stockholders representing at least a majority of the outstanding capital stock at a meeting duly called for the purpose. (Section 61)

[14] Upon approval by a majority vote of each of the board of directors or trustees of the constituent corporations of the plan of merger or consolidation, the same shall be submitted for approval by the stockholders or members of each of such corporations at separate corporate meetings duly called for the purpose. Notice of such meetings shall be given to all stockholders or members of the respective corporations in the same manner as giving notice of regular or special meetings under Section 49 of this Code. The notice shall state the purpose of the meeting and include a copy or a summary of the plan of merger or consolidation.
 
The affirmative vote of stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock of each corporation in the case of stock corporations or at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members in the case of nonstock corporations shall be necessary for the approval of such plan. Any dissenting stockholder may exercise the right of appraisal in accordance with this Code: Provided, That if after the approval by the stockholders of such plan, the board of directors decides to abandon the plan, the right of appraisal shall be extinguished.
 
Any amendment to the plan of merger or consolidation may be made: Provided, That such amendment is approved by a majority vote of the respective boards of directors or trustees of all the constituent corporations and ratified by the affirmative vote of stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock or of two-thirds (2/3) of the members of each of the constituent corporations. Such plan, together with any amendment, shall be considered as the agreement of merger or consolidation. (Section 76)

[15] Where the dissolution of a corporation may prejudice the rights of any creditor, a verified petition for dissolution shall be filed with the Commission. The petition shall be signed by a majority of the corporation's board of directors or trustees, verified by its president or secretary or one of its directors or trustees, and shall set forth all claims and demands against it, and that its dissolution was resolved upon by the affirmative vote of the stockholders representing at least two-thirds (2/3) of the outstanding capital stock or at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members at a meeting of its stockholders or members called for that purpose. The petition shall likewise state: (a) the reason for the dissolution; (b) the form, manner, and time when the notices were given; and (c) the date, place, and time of the meeting in which the vote was made. The corporation shall submit to the Commission the following: (1) a copy of the resolution authorizing the dissolution, certified by a majority of the board of directors or trustees and countersigned by the secretary of the corporation; and (2) a list of all its creditors. (Section 135)

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