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Your role in a shareholders’ meeting

The information contained in this section is of a general nature. For ease of reading, the discussion is limited to a description of the rights and obligations of shareholders of a business corporation. However, parallels may be drawn, with the necessary modifications, with the holding of securities of other types of issuers, such as limited partnerships and income trusts.

When you purchase shares of a company, you own part of its capital. This does not give you the right to intervene in the day-to-day management of the company. That is the responsibility of the company’s board of directors and officers.

However, as a shareholder, you may give your opinion and ask the officers questions about the company’s activities and the way it is managed. In some cases, shareholders may be consulted on executive compensation.

You can attend shareholders’ meetings in person or you can mandate someone to represent you. The rules governing how a shareholders’ meeting is conducted may vary depending on a company’s articles of incorporation, by-laws and code of procedure.