Can shareholders compel a company to evade taxes? Logically, if they think it is in their interest the company has to do it. The charter of a corporation is to make money for shareholders, I don't think most charters require the company to follow the law of a specific federal government.

And, they are not aiding or abetting anything. They are just exercising shareholder rights.



Any conduct that demands someone does something unlawfully is unlawful. Taxes are laws and regulations. Not paying the taxes is unlawful, especially under 26 USC 7201. So the shareholders are not only demanding the company to break laws, they aid and abett such behavior, making them also liable together with the company as there is 18 USC 2:

(a) Whoever commits an offense against the United States or aids, abets, counsels, commands, induces or procures its commission, is punishable as a principal.

(b) Whoever willfully causes an act to be done which if directly performed by him or another would be an offense against the United States, is punishable as a principal.

It could also be inciting to violate laws. It is not a shareholder's right to ask for someone to break the law.

  • You are correct to assert that shareholders cannot demand the corporation practice tax evasion. However, it is perfectly legitimate for shareholders to demand tax avoidance as such avoidance is lawful and the corporation owes them a fiduciary duty. – Kevin Nov 27 '20 at 22:37
  • 2
    @Kevin The question specifically asks if they can demand evading taxes, which is unlawful. – Trish Nov 27 '20 at 23:56

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