Tyveri ved højlys dag: Majoritetsmisbrug i fåmandsselskaber

Troels Michael Lilja, Cecilie Elgaard Christensen, Malene Høj Hansen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The article examines the scope of minority protection with focus on the prohibition of majority abuse in the Danish Companies Act’s general clauses. The analysis shows that shareholders in close corporations are to some extend obliged to act with loyalty towards each other. This is due to the nature of the firm that stipulates an underlying implicit agreement, which is covered by the contractual duty of loyalty. However, the duty of loyalty is not stated in corporate law and is neither clarified in accompanying case law, which creates an uncertain position for the minority. The general clauses only include qualified types of abuse that constitute an »obvious« and »unjust« benefit. Even though »unjust benefit« is limited by the duty of loyalty, the literal interpretation is inconsistent with the purpose of the clauses, as they aim to protect the minority from hidden discrimination. In general, the minority has a low incentive to prosecute the majority for suspected majority abuse, as the chances of winning is low due to the difficult burden of proof, as well as the litigation costs. Thus, the majority has a high incentive to commit abuse, as the risk of lawsuit is low, and the majority only risks having to pay litigation costs and a compensation equal to his profit gained from the abuse.
Original languageDanish
JournalNordisk Tidsskrift for Selskabsret
Volume21
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)52-75
Number of pages24
ISSN1399-140X
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Cite this

Lilja, Troels Michael ; Elgaard Christensen, Cecilie ; Høj Hansen, Malene. / Tyveri ved højlys dag : Majoritetsmisbrug i fåmandsselskaber. In: Nordisk Tidsskrift for Selskabsret. 2019 ; Vol. 21, No. 3. pp. 52-75.
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abstract = "The article examines the scope of minority protection with focus on the prohibition of majority abuse in the Danish Companies Act’s general clauses. The analysis shows that shareholders in close corporations are to some extend obliged to act with loyalty towards each other. This is due to the nature of the firm that stipulates an underlying implicit agreement, which is covered by the contractual duty of loyalty. However, the duty of loyalty is not stated in corporate law and is neither clarified in accompanying case law, which creates an uncertain position for the minority. The general clauses only include qualified types of abuse that constitute an »obvious« and »unjust« benefit. Even though »unjust benefit« is limited by the duty of loyalty, the literal interpretation is inconsistent with the purpose of the clauses, as they aim to protect the minority from hidden discrimination. In general, the minority has a low incentive to prosecute the majority for suspected majority abuse, as the chances of winning is low due to the difficult burden of proof, as well as the litigation costs. Thus, the majority has a high incentive to commit abuse, as the risk of lawsuit is low, and the majority only risks having to pay litigation costs and a compensation equal to his profit gained from the abuse.",
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Lilja, TM, Elgaard Christensen, C & Høj Hansen, M 2019, 'Tyveri ved højlys dag: Majoritetsmisbrug i fåmandsselskaber', Nordisk Tidsskrift for Selskabsret, vol. 21, no. 3, pp. 52-75.

Tyveri ved højlys dag : Majoritetsmisbrug i fåmandsselskaber. / Lilja, Troels Michael; Elgaard Christensen, Cecilie; Høj Hansen, Malene.

In: Nordisk Tidsskrift for Selskabsret, Vol. 21, No. 3, 2019, p. 52-75.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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N1 - Artiklen bygger på Cecilie Elgaard Christensen og Malene Høj Hansens kandidatafhandling på cand.merc.(jur.) med titlen »Minoritetsbeskyttelse i selskaber med begrænset ejerkreds i juridisk og retsøkonomisk perspektiv«, som blev udarbejdet under vejledning af Troels Michael Lilja og Henrik Lando. Artiklen er fuldstændig omarbejdet, men benytter det samme datagrundlag.

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