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Full-Text Articles in Law

A More Realistic Approach To Directors' Duties, Michelle M. Harner Sep 2013

A More Realistic Approach To Directors' Duties, Michelle M. Harner

Michelle M. Harner

Expectations for what fiduciary duties can achieve in the corporate context are unrealistic. This segment of the law—and the alleged deficiencies therein—are blamed for corporate scandals, securities fraud, failed business plans, and even a company's insolvency. Risk is, however, inherent in business, and human beings are flawed. Fiduciary duty law cannot change these basic facts. To the extent we think it can, we will continue to be disappointed and frustrated. This essay considers recasting (and to a greater extent codifying) directors’ duties in a positive frame to help foster better director oversight. It does not suggest that ...


Corporate Culture And Erm, Michelle M. Harner Jul 2013

Corporate Culture And Erm, Michelle M. Harner

Michelle M. Harner

The attitudes and actions of those viewed as leaders within a company (commonly referred to as “tone at the top”) help to define corporate culture and are critical to implementing a successful enterprise risk management (ERM) program. This paper explores the challenges and benefits of creating a risk-aware corporate culture, including the potential legal implications for boards of directors.


The Potential Cost And Value Of Erm, Michelle M. Harner Mar 2013

The Potential Cost And Value Of Erm, Michelle M. Harner

Michelle M. Harner

The concept of enterprise risk managment (ERM) as a holistic approach to managing a company's risk profile has tremendous appeal. However, companies are frequently skeptical about its value and whether the results will justify the cost, effort, and challenges of implementing a meaningful ERM process. This report considers some of those concerns and highlights the governance, compliance, and cultural value of ERM.


Activist Distressed Debtholders: The New Barbarians At The Gate?, Michelle M. Harner Feb 2011

Activist Distressed Debtholders: The New Barbarians At The Gate?, Michelle M. Harner

Michelle M. Harner

The term “corporate raiders” previously struck fear in the hearts of corporate boards and management teams. It generally refers to investors who target undervalued, cash-flush or mismanaged companies and initiate a hostile takeover of the company. Corporate raiders earned their name in part because of their focus on value extraction, which could entail dismantling a company and selling off its crown jewels. Today, the term often conjures up images of Michael Milken, Henry Kravis or the movie character Gordon Gekko, but the alleged threat posed to companies by corporate raiders is less prevalent—at least with respect to the traditional ...