Shareholder Duties and Disputes in Closely-Held Corporations in Massachusetts

By Marc C. Laredo

Over thirty years ago, the Supreme Judicial Court issued its landmark ruling in Donahue v. Rodd Electrotype Co. of New England, Inc. in which it established standards for the governance of closely held corporations in Massachusetts and held that each shareholder in a closely-held corporation owes a fiduciary duty to other shareholders. In the years since this decision, courts have analyzed an array of issues involving management and control of closely-held corporations. This article reviews the ruling and then discusses significant developments that followed.

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