Shareholders Do Not Own Corporate Assets

A corporation is, for corporate law purposes, a “person” separate from its owners.  As such, it owns the assets of the business, including, for example, customer lists, trade secrets and equipment.  A shareholder generally holds only legal title to the shares of stock in the corporation and not to its assets.  If a shareholder decides to “leave” a corporation, for example, by selling his or her stock (back to the corporation or to another shareholder or to a third party), that shareholder ceases to be an owner of the corporation.  This means that such shareholder cannot, unless the other shareholders agree, take customer lists, trade secrets and other corporate assets because those remain the property of the corporation. 

This discussion is not legal advice, a solicitation of you as a client, nor the engaging in the practice of law in any jurisdiction.  This discussion is merely for information/education and should not be relied upon for legal advice by anyone because the facts discussed may be different from your own situation.  If you need legal advice, consult a qualified attorney.  For more information please visit my website at


Electronics at Amazon
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Accounting and Finance Software at Amazon
Shareholder Assets at Amazon Books
Business and Money at Amazon Books

About Elio Palacios, Jr.

Attorney Elio Palacios, Jr., represents individuals, corporations, entrepreneurs, small businesses, startups and early stage businesses, physicians, dentists, and healthcare businesses in corporate, business and commercial transactions and litigation. He also counsels employers and individuals on visa, immigration and naturalization matters. Visit to learn more.
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