The Importance of Drafting Clear Corporate Bylaws [The Legal Intelligencer]

In September 2009, when the FBI had arrested Sergey Aleynikov for allegedly stealing proprietary trading codes from Goldman Sachs, the financial powerhouse probably did not expect, as a purported victim, to pay him to defend against the criminal charges. However, last month a New Jersey federal judge held that Aleynikov, a programmer at a Goldman subsidiary for less than two years, could be considered an officer by virtue of his vice president title and that the company's bylaws required it to advance his attorney fees. The ongoing dispute over the costs of Aleynikov's defense against federal and state charges arising from his alleged theft demonstrates the importance of careful drafting of the advancement and indemnification provisions of corporate bylaws.

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