Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 13.1. Corporations
Chapter 9. Virginia Stock Corporation Act

§ 13.1-653. Distributions to shareholders.

A. The board of directors may authorize and the corporation may make distributions to its shareholders, subject to restriction by the articles of incorporation and the limitation in subsection C.

B. The board of directors may fix the record date for determining shareholders entitled to a distribution. If the board of directors does not fix the record date for determining shareholders entitled to a distribution, other than one involving a purchase, redemption, or other acquisition of the corporation's shares, the record date is the date the board of directors authorizes the distribution.

C. No distribution may be made if, after giving it effect:

1. The corporation would not be able to pay its debts as they become due in the usual course of business; or

2. The corporation's total assets would be less than the sum of its total liabilities plus (unless the articles of incorporation permit otherwise) the amount that would be needed, if the corporation were to be dissolved at the time of the distribution, to satisfy the preferential rights upon dissolution of shareholders whose preferential rights are superior to those receiving the distribution.

D. The board of directors may base a determination that a distribution is not prohibited under subsection C either on financial statements prepared on the basis of accounting practices and principles that are reasonable in the circumstances or on a fair valuation or other method that is reasonable in the circumstances. For any public corporation, reliance upon the most recent financial statements that have been prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States shall be deemed to be reasonable in the circumstances if the financial statements have been audited by independent certified public accountants whose certification does not include a going concern qualification.

E. Except as provided in subsection G, the effect of a distribution under subsection C is measured:

1. In the case of a distribution by purchase, redemption, or other acquisition of the corporation's shares, as of the earlier of (i) the date cash or other property is transferred or debt to a shareholder incurred by the corporation or (ii) the date the shareholder ceases to be a shareholder with respect to the acquired shares;

2. In the case of any other distribution of indebtedness, as of the date the indebtedness is distributed; and

3. In all other cases, as of (i) the date the distribution is authorized if the payment occurs within 120 days after the date of authorization or (ii) the date payment is made if it occurs more than 120 days after the date of authorization.

F. A corporation's indebtedness to a shareholder incurred by reason of a distribution made in accordance with this section is at parity with the corporation's indebtedness to its general, unsecured creditors except to the extent subordinated by agreement.

G. Indebtedness of a corporation, including indebtedness issued as a distribution, is not considered a liability for purposes of determinations under subsection C if its terms provide that payment of principal and interest is made only if and to the extent that payment of a distribution to shareholders could then be made under this section. If such indebtedness is issued as a distribution, each payment of principal or interest is treated as a distribution, the effect of which is measured on the date the payment is actually made.

H. This section shall not apply to distributions in liquidation under Article 16 (§ 13.1-742 et seq.).

Code 1950, §§ 13-206, 13.1-4, 13.1-43, 13.1-62; 1956, c. 428; 1962, c. 14; 1979, c. 175; 1985, c. 522; 2005, c. 765; 2019, c. 734.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.