The Globe and Mail reports in its Monday edition that Canada's biggest banks and insurance companies will hold their annual meetings on-line after jointly obtaining a court order amid intense concern about in-person gatherings. The Globe's Christine Dobby writes that social-distancing protocols and temporary bans on large gatherings spurred by the coronavirus have made planning for the spring annual general meeting (AGM) season difficult. The banks also have their meetings early in the AGM season, as their fiscal years end Oct. 31 and corporate governance law requires them to hold a meeting within six months.
The group said a court order was required because "Canadian banks and insurance companies are not permitted to conduct an electronic annual meeting in lieu of an in-person meeting without relief from the court."
As of press time last Friday, Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Bank of Nova Scotia, Canada Western Bank, Laurentian Bank of Canada, Toronto-Dominion Bank and Manulife Financial had issued news releases regarding plans to hold virtual meetings. The banks and insurers said the court order also "permits alternative means for distributing meeting materials."
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