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Does Control Make a Difference? The Moral Foundations of Shareholder Liability for Corporate Wrongs
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Does Control Make a Difference? The Moral Foundations of Shareholder Liability for Corporate Wrongs

Author: Jonathan Crowe Affiliation: T. C. Beirne School of Law, University of Queensland
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication:The Modern Law Review, v75 n2 (March 2012): 159-179
  Peer-reviewed
Other Databases: WorldCatAcademic Search CompleteWorldCat
Summary:
The doctrine of limited liability, as traditionally understood, prevents shareholders from being held personally liable for corporate wrongs. Several authors have recently argued that the doctrine should be modified to make some or all shareholders individually liable for torts committed by corporations in which they hold shares. This article distinguishes three types of argument that might provide a moral basis for  Read more...
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Details

Document Type: Article
All Authors / Contributors: Jonathan Crowe Affiliation: T. C. Beirne School of Law, University of Queensland
ISSN:0026-7961
DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2230.2012.00895.x
Language Note: English
Unique Identifier: 5151356843
Awards:
Other Titles: Shareholder Liability for Corporate Wrongs
Responsibility: Jonathan Crowe

Abstract:

The doctrine of limited liability, as traditionally understood, prevents shareholders from being held personally liable for corporate wrongs. Several authors have recently argued that the doctrine should be modified to make some or all shareholders individually liable for torts committed by corporations in which they hold shares. This article distinguishes three types of argument that might provide a moral basis for shareholder liability in such cases. I contend that while these arguments support holding at least some shareholders liable for corporate torts, they fail to justify a general regime of unlimited pro rata shareholder liability. The level of control shareholders exercise over a company makes an important difference to their moral duties to compensate victims of corporate wrongdoing.
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