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Now that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved final rules regarding the inclusion of shareholder nominees in company proxy statements, proxy access is the law for most U.S. public companies.1 Eligible shareholders (or groups of shareholders) will be able to nominate director candidates without the expense and effort of mailing separate proxy materials. The proxy access rules will become effective on Nov. 15, 20102 and will apply to companies (other than small reporting companies) that mailed their 2010 proxy statements on or after March 15, 2010. Accordingly, most public companies need to prepare for the 2011 proxy season with proxy access in mind. As companies review the impact of the new proxy access rules, there are a number of important issues to consider.

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