Every corporation must hold an annual meeting. It is a basic requirement to continue to hold a corporate charter in your state, so you might as well make the most of it. No one will tell you where to hold your meeting, so why not go someplace warm, if you live in the northern part of the country?
When is the Annual Meeting?
The annual meeting of a corporation is typically held after the end of the fiscal (financial) year, so the shareholders can review the year-end financial statements. Since many corporations have a December 31 year end, they have their annual meeting in January or February.
Who Attends the Annual Meeting?
All of the members of your corporation's board of directors should be there, as well as the corporation's President/CEO, and top vice presidents, particularly if they have something to present. If you have shareholders, they should be given an invitation and also a proxy to vote on any matters coming up (like election of directors), in case they can't attend. The shareholders get a proxy statement showing the issues and allowing them to mark their proxy as they want to vote. Then they send back the proxy and it gets included with the other votes.
What Goes On At an Annual Meeting?
Depending on the size and type of corporation, the following activities usually happen at an annual meeting:
- Election of Directors whose terms are up for renewal or to fill vacancies on the board of directors
- Declaration of a dividend, if applicable
- Review of the corporation's annual report
- Discussion of new projects and activities.
Where Is the Annual Meeting Held?
You can hold your annual meeting anywhere you want. You can even hold it online, inviting shareholders and board members to join you via teleconference, using online services. Wherever you choose, just do it, have fun, and make sure you keep good records on the meeting.
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