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Spotlight on Proxy Matters — "E-Proxy" or "Notice and Access"

Why don't I receive a copy of the proxy statement, annual report and proxy card in the mailing anymore?

In 2007, the SEC adopted new "e-proxy" or "notice and access" rules. These rules allow companies to send you a one-page notice that the materials are available electronically instead of a full package containing a proxy card, annual report and proxy statement. You can elect to have the company send hard copies of proxy materials after receiving the notice. Companies can still choose to mail hard copies of proxy materials to all or some shareholders that have not elected to have the company send hard copies to them.

How does "Notice and Access" work?

A company may send (or request brokers to send) a one-page notice instead of the traditional large proxy package. This enables companies to save costs and help the environment. If you receive such a notice, you have the option of (1) accessing the proxy materials, including instructions on how to vote, online or (2) requesting that those materials be sent to you in paper.

Sample Proxy Notice
sample proxy notice

Can I get paper proxy packages now and in the future?

Yes. If you are a registered owner, you can call the telephone number on the notice and tell the company that you want paper proxy packages. This selection would apply to all future proxy mailings by that company as well. However, because you own securities directly with the company, you would need to call each company in which you own shares.

If you are a beneficial owner holding your stock through a broker, you only need to make this request once, by contacting your broker. Your broker will then send you paper copies of current and future proxy materials for all of your stocks held in that brokerage account.

The Office of Investor Education and Advocacy has provided this information as a service to investors. It is neither a legal interpretation nor a statement of SEC policy. If you have questions concerning the meaning or application of a particular law or rule, please consult with an attorney who specializes in securities law.
Modified: 02/19/2010