607.1420 Grounds for administrative dissolution.--
(1) The Department of State may commence a proceeding under s. 607.1421 to administratively dissolve a corporation if:
(a) The corporation has failed to file its annual report or pay the annual report filing fee within the time required by this act;
(b) The corporation is without a registered agent or registered office in this state for 30 days or more;
(c) The corporation does not notify the Department of State within 30 days that its registered agent or registered office has been changed, that its registered agent has resigned, or that its registered office has been discontinued;
(d) The corporation has failed to answer truthfully and fully, within the time prescribed by this act, interrogatories propounded by the Department of State; or
(e) The corporation's period of duration stated in its articles of incorporation has expired.
(2) The foregoing enumeration in subsection (1) of grounds for administrative dissolution shall not exclude actions or special proceedings by the Department of Legal Affairs or any state officials for the annulment or dissolution of a corporation for other causes as provided in any other statute of this state.
History.--s. 127, ch. 89-154; s. 156, ch. 90-179.
(1) If the Department of State determines that one or more grounds exist under s. 607.1420 for dissolving a corporation, it shall serve the corporation with written notice of its determination under s. 607.0504(2), stating the grounds therefor.
(2) If the corporation does not correct each ground for dissolution or demonstrate to the reasonable satisfaction of the Department of State that each ground determined by the department does not exist within 60 days of issuance of the notice, the department shall administratively dissolve the corporation by issuing a certificate of dissolution that recites the ground or grounds for dissolution and its effective date.
(3) A corporation administratively dissolved continues its corporate existence but may not carry on any business except that necessary to wind up and liquidate its business and affairs under s. 607.1405 and notify claimants under s. 607.1406.
(4) A director, officer, or agent of a corporation dissolved pursuant to this section, purporting to act on behalf of the corporation, is personally liable for the debts, obligations, and liabilities of the corporation arising from such action and incurred subsequent to the corporation's administrative dissolution only if he or she has actual notice of the administrative dissolution at the time such action is taken; but such liability shall be terminated upon the ratification of such action by the corporation's board of directors or shareholders subsequent to the reinstatement of the corporation under ss. 607.1401-607.14401.
(5) The administrative dissolution of a corporation does not terminate the authority of its registered agent.
History.--s. 128, ch. 89-154; s. 1, ch. 95-211; s. 34, ch. 97-102.
(1) A corporation administratively dissolved under s. 607.1421 may apply to the Department of State for reinstatement at any time after the effective date of dissolution. The corporation must submit a reinstatement form prescribed and furnished by the Department of State or a current uniform business report signed by the registered agent and an officer or director and all fees then owed by the corporation, computed at the rate provided by law at the time the corporation applies for reinstatement.
(2) If the Department of State determines that the application contains the information required by subsection (1) and that the information is correct, it shall reinstate the corporation.
(3) When the reinstatement is effective, it relates back to and takes effect as of the effective date of the administrative dissolution and the corporation resumes carrying on its business as if the administrative dissolution had never occurred.
(4) The name of the dissolved corporation shall not be available for assumption or use by another corporation until 1 year after the effective date of dissolution unless the dissolved corporation provides the Department of State with an affidavit executed as required by s. 607.0120 permitting the immediate assumption or use of the name by another corporation.
(5) If the name of the dissolved corporation has been lawfully assumed in this state by another corporation, the Department of State shall require the dissolved corporation to amend its articles of incorporation to change its name before accepting its application for reinstatement.
History.--s. 129, ch. 89-154; s. 157, ch. 90-179; s. 36, ch. 2003-283.
(1) If the Department of State denies a corporation's application for reinstatement following administrative dissolution, it shall serve the corporation under s. 607.0504(2) with a written notice that explains the reason or reasons for denial.
(2) After exhaustion of administrative remedies, the corporation may appeal the denial of reinstatement to the appropriate court as provided in s. 120.68 within 30 days after service of the notice of denial is perfected. The corporation appeals by petitioning the court to set aside the dissolution and attaching to the petition copies of the Department of State's certificate of dissolution, the corporation's application for reinstatement, and the department's notice of denial.
(3) The court may summarily order the Department of State to reinstate the dissolved corporation or may take other action the court considers appropriate.
(4) The court's final decision may be appealed as in other civil proceedings.
History.--s. 130, ch. 89-154; s. 264, ch. 96-410.
(1)(a) In a proceeding by the Department of Legal Affairs if it is established that:
1. The corporation obtained its articles of incorporation through fraud; or
2. The corporation has continued to exceed or abuse the authority conferred upon it by law.
(b) The enumeration in paragraph (a) of grounds for involuntary dissolution does not exclude actions or special proceedings by the Department of Legal Affairs or any state official for the annulment or dissolution of a corporation for other causes as provided in any other statute of this state;
(2) In a proceeding by a shareholder if it is established that:
(a) The directors are deadlocked in the management of the corporate affairs, the shareholders are unable to break the deadlock, and irreparable injury to the corporation is threatened or being suffered; or
(b) The shareholders are deadlocked in voting power and have failed to elect successors to directors whose terms have expired or would have expired upon qualification of their successors;
(3) In a proceeding by a shareholder or group of shareholders in a corporation having 35 or fewer shareholders if it is established that:
(a) The corporate assets are being misapplied or wasted, causing material injury to the corporation; or
(b) The directors or those in control of the corporation have acted, are acting, or are reasonably expected to act in a manner that is illegal or fraudulent;
(4) In a proceeding by a creditor if it is established that:
(a) The creditor's claim has been reduced to judgment, the execution on the judgment returned unsatisfied, and the corporation is insolvent; or
(b) The corporation has admitted in writing that the creditor's claim is due and owing and the corporation is insolvent; or
(5) In a proceeding by the corporation to have its voluntary dissolution continued under court supervision.
History.--s. 131, ch. 89-154; s. 7, ch. 94-327.
(1) Venue for a proceeding brought under s. 607.1430 lies in the circuit court of the county where the corporation's principal office is or was last located, as shown by the records of the Department of State, or, if none in this state, where its registered office is or was last located.
(2) It is not necessary to make shareholders parties to a proceeding to dissolve a corporation unless relief is sought against them individually.
(3) A court in a proceeding brought to dissolve a corporation may issue injunctions, appoint a receiver or custodian pendente lite with all powers and duties the court directs, take other action required to preserve the corporate assets wherever located, and carry on the business of the corporation until a full hearing can be held.
(4) If the court determines that any party has commenced, continued, or participated in an action under s. 607.1430 and has acted arbitrarily, frivolously, vexatiously, or not in good faith, the court may, in its discretion, award attorney's fees and other reasonable expenses to the other parties to the action who have been affected adversely by such actions.
History.--s. 132, ch. 89-154; s. 8, ch. 94-327.
(1) A court in a judicial proceeding brought to dissolve a corporation may appoint one or more receivers to wind up and liquidate, or one or more custodians to manage, the business and affairs of the corporation. The court shall hold a hearing, after notifying all parties to the proceeding and any interested persons designated by the court, before appointing a receiver or custodian. The court appointing a receiver or custodian has exclusive jurisdiction over the corporation and all of its property wherever located.
(2) The court may appoint a natural person or a corporation authorized to act as a receiver or custodian. The corporation may be a domestic corporation or a foreign corporation authorized to transact business in this state. The court may require the receiver or custodian to post bond, with or without sureties, in an amount the court directs.
(3) The court shall describe the powers and duties of the receiver or custodian in its appointing order, which may be amended from time to time. Among other powers:
(a) The receiver:
1. May dispose of all or any part of the assets of the corporation wherever located, at a public or private sale, if authorized by the court; and
2. May sue and defend in his or her own name as receiver of the corporation in all courts of this state.
(b) The custodian may exercise all of the powers of the corporation, through or in place of its board of directors or officers, to the extent necessary to manage the affairs of the corporation in the best interests of its shareholders and creditors.
(4) The court during a receivership may redesignate the receiver a custodian, and during a custodianship may redesignate the custodian a receiver, if doing so is in the best interests of the corporation and its shareholders and creditors.
(5) The court from time to time during the receivership or custodianship may order compensation paid and expense disbursements or reimbursements made to the receiver or custodian and his or her counsel from the assets of the corporation or proceeds from the sale of the assets.
(6) The court has jurisdiction to appoint an ancillary receiver for the assets and business of a corporation. The ancillary receiver shall serve ancillary to a receiver located in any other state, whenever the court deems that circumstances exist requiring the appointment of such a receiver. The court may appoint such an ancillary receiver for a foreign corporation even though no receiver has been appointed elsewhere. Such receivership shall be converted into an ancillary receivership when an order entered by a court of competent jurisdiction in the other state provides for a receivership of the corporation.
History.--s. 133, ch. 89-154; s. 35, ch. 97-102.
(1) If after a hearing the court determines that one or more grounds for judicial dissolution described in s. 607.1430 exist, it may enter a judgment dissolving the corporation and specifying the effective date of the dissolution, and the clerk of the court shall deliver a certified copy of the judgment to the Department of State, which shall file it.
(2) After entering the judgment of dissolution, the court shall direct the winding up and liquidation of the corporation's business and affairs in accordance with s. 607.1405 and the notification of claimants in accordance with s. 607.1406, subject to the provisions of subsection (3).
(3) In a proceeding for judicial dissolution, the court may require all creditors of the corporation to file with the clerk of the court or with the receiver, in such form as the court may prescribe, proofs under oath of their respective claims. If the court requires the filing of claims, it shall fix a date, which shall be not less than 4 months from the date of the order, as the last day for filing of claims. The court shall prescribe the method by which such notice of the deadline for filing claims shall be given to creditors and claimants. Prior to the date so fixed, the court may extend the time for the filing of claims by court order. Creditors and claimants failing to file proofs of claim on or before the date so fixed may be barred, by order of court, from participating in the distribution of the assets of the corporation. Nothing in this section affects the enforceability of any recorded mortgage or lien or the perfected security interest or rights of a person in possession of real or personal property.
History.--s. 134, ch. 89-154; s. 158, ch. 90-179; s. 38, ch. 93-281.
(1) Appoint a receiver or custodian pendente lite as provided in s. 607.1432;
(2) Appoint a provisional director as provided in s. 607.1435;
(3) Order a purchase of the complaining shareholder's shares pursuant to s. 607.1436; or
(4) Upon proof of good cause, make any order or grant any equitable relief other than dissolution or liquidation as in its discretion it may deem appropriate.
History.--s. 9, ch. 94-327.
(1) A provisional director may be appointed in the discretion of the court if it appears that such action by the court will remedy the grounds alleged by the complaining shareholder to support the jurisdiction of the court under s. 607.1430. A provisional director may be appointed notwithstanding the absence of a vacancy on the board of directors, and such director shall have all the rights and powers of a duly elected director, including the right to notice of and to vote at meetings of directors, until such time as the provisional director is removed by order of the court or, unless otherwise ordered by a court, removed by a vote of the shareholders sufficient either to elect a majority of the board of directors or, if greater than majority voting is required by the articles of incorporation or the bylaws, to elect the requisite number of directors needed to take action. A provisional director shall be an impartial person who is neither a shareholder nor a creditor of the corporation or of any subsidiary or affiliate of the corporation, and whose further qualifications, if any, may be determined by the court.
(2) A provisional director shall report from time to time to the court concerning the matter complained of, or the status of the deadlock, if any, and of the status of the corporation's business, as the court shall direct. No provisional director shall be liable for any action taken or decision made, except as directors may be liable under s. 607.0831. In addition, the provisional director shall submit to the court, if so directed, recommendations as to the appropriate disposition of the action. Whenever a provisional director is appointed, any officer or director of the corporation may, from time to time, petition the court for instructions clarifying the duties and responsibilities of such officer or director.
(3) In any proceeding under this section, the court shall allow reasonable compensation to the provisional director for services rendered and reimbursement or direct payment of reasonable costs and expenses, which amounts shall be paid by the corporation.
History.--s. 10, ch. 94-327.
(1) In a proceeding under s. 607.1430(2) or (3) to dissolve a corporation, the corporation may elect or, if it fails to elect, one or more shareholders may elect to purchase all shares owned by the petitioning shareholder at the fair value of the shares. An election pursuant to this section shall be irrevocable unless the court determines that it is equitable to set aside or modify the election.
(2) An election to purchase pursuant to this section may be filed with the court at any time within 90 days after the filing of the petition under s. 607.1430(2) or (3) or at such later time as the court in its discretion may allow. If the election to purchase is filed by one or more shareholders, the corporation shall, within 10 days thereafter, give written notice to all shareholders, other than the petitioner. The notice must state the name and number of shares owned by the petitioner and the name and number of shares owned by each electing shareholder and must advise the recipients of their right to join in the election to purchase shares in accordance with this section. Shareholders who wish to participate must file notice of their intention to join in the purchase no later than 30 days after the effective date of the notice to them. All shareholders who have filed an election or notice of their intention to participate in the election to purchase thereby become parties to the proceeding and shall participate in the purchase in proportion to their ownership of shares as of the date the first election was filed, unless they otherwise agree or the court otherwise directs. After an election has been filed by the corporation or one or more shareholders, the proceeding under s. 607.1430(2) or (3) may not be discontinued or settled, nor may the petitioning shareholder sell or otherwise dispose of his or her shares, unless the court determines that it would be equitable to the corporation and the shareholders, other than the petitioner, to permit such discontinuance, settlement, sale, or other disposition.
(3) If, within 60 days after the filing of the first election, the parties reach agreement as to the fair value and terms of the purchase of the petitioner's shares, the court shall enter an order directing the purchase of petitioner's shares upon the terms and conditions agreed to by the parties.
(4) If the parties are unable to reach an agreement as provided for in subsection (3), the court, upon application of any party, shall stay the s. 607.1430 proceedings and determine the fair value of the petitioner's shares as of the day before the date on which the petition under s. 607.1430 was filed or as of such other date as the court deems appropriate under the circumstances.
(5) Upon determining the fair value of the shares, the court shall enter an order directing the purchase upon such terms and conditions as the court deems appropriate, which may include payment of the purchase price in installments, when necessary in the interests of equity, provision for security to assure payment of the purchase price and any additional costs, fees, and expenses as may have been awarded, and, if the shares are to be purchased by shareholders, the allocation of shares among such shareholders. In allocating petitioner's shares among holders of different classes of shares, the court shall attempt to preserve the existing distribution of voting rights among holders of different classes insofar as practicable and may direct that holders of a specific class or classes shall not participate in the purchase. Interest may be allowed at the rate and from the date determined by the court to be equitable; however, if the court finds that the refusal of the petitioning shareholder to accept an offer of payment was arbitrary or otherwise not in good faith, no interest shall be allowed. If the court finds that the petitioning shareholder had probable grounds for relief under s. 607.1430(3), it may award to the petitioning shareholder reasonable fees and expenses of counsel and of any experts employed by petitioner.
(6) Upon entry of an order under subsection (3) or subsection (5), the court shall dismiss the petition to dissolve the corporation under s. 607.1430 and the petitioning shareholder shall no longer have any rights or status as a shareholder of the corporation, except the right to receive the amounts awarded by the order of the court, which shall be enforceable in the same manner as any other judgment.
(7) The purchase ordered pursuant to subsection (5) shall be made within 10 days after the date the order becomes final unless, before that time, the corporation files with the court a notice of its intention to adopt articles of dissolution pursuant to ss. 607.1402 and 607.1403, which articles shall then be adopted and filed within 50 days thereafter. Upon filing of such articles of dissolution, the corporation shall be dissolved in accordance with the provisions of ss. 607.1405 and 607.1406, and the order entered pursuant to subsection (5) shall no longer be of any force or effect, except that the court may award the petitioning shareholder reasonable fees and expenses of counsel and any experts in accordance with the provisions of subsection (5) and the petitioner may continue to pursue any claims previously asserted on behalf of the corporation.
(8) Any payment by the corporation pursuant to an order under subsection (3) or subsection (5), other than an award of fees and expenses pursuant to subsection (5), is subject to the provisions of s. 607.06401.
History.--s. 11, ch. 94-327; s. 36, ch. 97-102.
607.14401 Deposit with Department of Financial Services.--Assets of a dissolved corporation that should be transferred to a creditor, claimant, or shareholder of the corporation who cannot be found or who is not competent to receive them shall be deposited, within 6 months from the date fixed for the payment of the final liquidating distribution, with the Department of Financial Services, where such assets shall be held as abandoned property. When the creditor, claimant, or shareholder furnishes satisfactory proof of entitlement to the amount or assets deposited, the Department of Financial Services shall pay the creditor, claimant, or shareholder or his or her representative that amount or those assets.
History.--s. 135, ch. 89-154; s. 159, ch. 90-179; s. 37, ch. 97-102; s. 746, ch. 2003-261.
Note.--Former s. 607.1440.