Brief Fact Summary. Petitioner, Charles Pillsbury, sought to inspect corporate records to identify other shareholders for the purpose of informing them of Respondent’s involvement in the Vietnam War.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. A shareholder can only demand corporate investor identification information when the purpose is related to investment concerns traditionally associated with shareholder concerns.
Issue. The issue is whether Petitioner’s demand for records for the purpose of informing them of Respondent’s involvement in the Vietnam War is a proper purpose that would allow for the inspection.
Held. The court held that Petitioner’s purpose was not proper. The proper purpose has to pertain to investment purposes rather than just simply whenever a stockholder has any grievance with a company’s management. The court will not allow an absolute right of inspection.
Discussion. The court is concerned that allowing an inspection by simply being able to be identified as a shareholder puts an enormous burden on corporations, which can have thousands of shareholders at any given point, to maintain their corporate records.