2019 Trinity Capital Inc. Long-Term Incentive Plan
EX-10.1 2 tm2120389d1_ex10-1.htm EXHIBIT 10.1 tm2112492-3_def14a_DIV_xx-ex10-1 - none - 1.5781239s
2019 TRINITY CAPITAL INC.
LONG TERM INCENTIVE PLAN
(A) General Purpose. The Plan has been established to advance the interests of Trinity Capital Inc. (the “Company”) by providing for the grant of Awards to Participants. At all times during such periods as the Company qualifies or is intended to qualify as a “business development company” under the 1940 Act, the terms of the Plan shall be construed so as to conform to the stock-based compensation requirements applicable to “business development companies” under the 1940 Act. An Award or related transaction will be deemed to be permitted under the 1940 Act if permitted by any exemptive or “no-action” relief granted by the Commission or its staff.
(B) Available Awards. The purpose of the Plan is to provide a means by which eligible recipients of Awards may be given an opportunity to benefit from increases in the value of the Company’s Stock through the granting of Restricted Stock, Restricted Stock Unit, Incentive Stock Options, Non-statutory Stock Options, Performance Awards, Dividend Equivalent Rights and Other Stock-Based Awards.
(C) Eligible Participants. All key Employees and all Employee Directors are eligible to be granted Awards by the Board under the Plan; provided that, no person shall be granted Awards of Restricted Stock unless such person is an Employee of the Company or an Employee of a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company.
(A) “1940 Act” means the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, and the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder.
(B) “Affiliate” means any corporation or other entity that stands in a relationship to the Company that would result in the Company and such corporation or other entity being treated as one employer under Section 414(b) or Section 414(c) of the Code, except that in determining eligibility for the grant of an Option by reason of service for an Affiliate, Sections 414(b) and 414(c) of the Code shall be applied by substituting “at least 50%” for “at least 80%” under Section 1563(a)(1), (2) and (3) of the Code and Treas. Regs. § 1.414(c)-2. The Company may at any time by amendment provide that different ownership thresholds (consistent with Section 409A) apply. Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this definition, except as otherwise determined by the Board, a corporation or other entity shall be treated as an Affiliate only if its employees would be treated as employees of the Company for purposes of the rules promulgated under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, with respect to the use of Form S-8.
(C) “Award” means an award of Restricted Stock, Restricted Stock Unit, Incentive Stock Options, Non-statutory Stock Options, Performance Awards, Dividend Equivalent Rights or Other Stock-Based Awards granted pursuant to the Plan.
(D) “Board” means the Board of Directors of the Company.
(E) “Code” means the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended and in effect, or any successor statute as from time to time in effect. Any reference to a provision of the Code shall be deemed to include a reference to any applicable guidance (as determined by the Board) with respect to such provision.
(F) “Commission” means the Securities and Exchange Commission.
(G) “Committee” means a committee of two or more members of the Board appointed by the Board in accordance with Section 3(C) of this Plan.
(H) “Company” means Trinity Capital Inc., a Maryland corporation.
(I) “Continuous Service” means the Participant’s uninterrupted service with the Company or an Affiliate, whether as an Employee or Employee Director.
(J) “Covered Transaction” means any of (i) a consolidation, merger, stock sale or similar transaction or series of related transactions in which the Company is not the surviving corporation or which results in the acquisition of all or substantially all of the Company’s then outstanding common stock by a single person or entity or by a group of persons and/or entities acting in concert, (ii) a sale or transfer of all or substantially all the Company’s assets, (iii) a dissolution or liquidation of the Company or (iv) following such time as the Company has a class of equity securities listed on a national securities exchange or quoted on an inter-dealer quotation system, a change in the membership of the Board for any reason such that the individuals who, as of the Effective Date, constitute the Board of Directors of the Company (the “Continuing Directors”) cease for any reason to constitute at least a majority of the Board (a “Board Change”); provided, however, that any individual becoming a director after the Effective Date whose election or nomination for election by the Company’s shareholders was approved by a vote of at least a majority of the Continuing Directors will be considered as though such individual were a Continuing Director, but excluding for this purpose any such individual whose initial assumption of office occurs as a result of either an actual or threatened election contest (as such terms are used in Rule 14a-11 of Regulation 14A promulgated under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended) or other actual or threatened solicitation of proxies or consents by or on behalf of any person or entity other than the Board. Where a Covered Transaction involves a tender offer that is reasonably expected to be followed by a merger described in clause (i) (as determined by the Board), the Covered Transaction shall be deemed to have occurred upon consummation of the tender offer.
(K) “Dividend Equivalent Rights” has the meaning set forth in Section 13.
(L) “Effective Date” has the meaning set forth in Section 15.
(M) “Employee” means any person employed by the Company or an Affiliate.
(N) “Employee Director” means a member of the Board of Directors of the Company who is also an Employee of the Company.
(O) “Family Member” means any child, stepchild, grandchild, parent, stepparent, grandparent, spouse, former spouse, sibling, niece, nephew, mother-in-law, father-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, or sister-in-law, including adoptive relationships, any person sharing the Participant’s household (other than a tenant or employee), a trust in which these persons have more than fifty percent of the beneficial interest, a foundation in which these persons (or the Participant) control the management of assets, and any other entity in which these persons (or the Participant) own more than fifty percent of the voting interests.
(P) “Incentive Stock Option” means an Option intended to qualify as an incentive stock option within the meaning of Section 422 of the Code and the regulations promulgated thereunder.
(Q) “Non-Employee Director Plan” means the Trinity Capital Inc. 2019 Non-Employee Director Restricted Stock Plan, as from time to time amended and in effect.
(R) “Non-statutory Stock Option” means an Option that is not an Incentive Stock Option.
(S) “Option” means an Incentive Stock Option or a Non-statutory Stock Option granted pursuant to the Plan.
(T) “Other Stock-Based Award” means an Award described in Section 10 of this Plan that is not covered by another section of this Plan.
(U) “Participant” means a person to whom an Award is granted pursuant to the Plan.
(V) “Performance Award” means any Award granted pursuant to Section 9 of this Plan.
(W) “Permitted Transferee” means a Family Member of a Participant to whom an Award has been transferred by gift.
(X) “Plan” means this 2019 Trinity Capital Inc. Long Term Incentive Plan, as from time to time amended and in effect.
(Y) “Restricted Stock” means an Award of Stock for so long as the Stock remains subject to restrictions requiring that it be forfeited to the Company if specified conditions are not satisfied.
(Z) “Restricted Stock Unit” means any Award granted under Section 8 of the Plan that is not an Award of Restricted Stock. A Restricted Stock Unit may be a “Performance Restricted Stock Unit,” which is a Restricted Stock Unit that vests only upon the attainment of performance conditions and/or performance objectives as specified in the applicable Award.
(AA) “Securities Act” means the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.
(AB) “Stock” means the common stock of the Company, par value $.01 per share.
(A) Administration By Board. The Board shall administer the Plan unless and until it delegates administration to a Committee, as provided in Section 3(C).
(B) Powers of the Board. The Board shall have the power, subject to the express provisions of the Plan and applicable law:
(i) To determine from time to time which of the persons eligible under the Plan shall be granted Awards; when and how each Award shall be granted and documented; what type or combination of types of Awards shall be granted; the provisions of each Award granted, including the time or times when a person shall be permitted to exercise an Award; and the number of shares of Stock with respect to which an Award shall be granted to each such person;
(ii) To construe and interpret the Plan and Awards granted under it, and to establish, amend and revoke rules and regulations for its administration. The Board, in the exercise of this power, may correct any defect, omission or inconsistency in the Plan or in any Award documentation, in such manner and to such extent as it shall deem necessary or expedient to make the Plan fully effective;
(iii) To amend the Plan or an Award as provided in Section 14;
(iv) To take any actions to preserve the tax treatment of Awards under the Plan;
(v) To terminate or suspend the Plan as provided in Section 15; and
(vi) Generally, to exercise such powers and to perform such acts as the Board deems necessary or expedient to promote the best interests of the Company and that are not in conflict with the provisions of the Plan.
(C) Delegation to Committee. The Board may delegate the administration of the Plan to a Committee or Committees composed of not less than two members of the Board, each of whom shall be (i) a “non-employee director” for purposes of Exchange Act Section 16 and Rule 16b-3 thereunder, (ii) an “outside director” for purposes of Section 162(m) and the regulations promulgated under the Code, and each of whom shall be, subject to any applicable transitional rules for newly public issuers, “independent” within the meaning of the listing standards of any applicable stock exchange or national market system, and the term “Committee” shall apply to any persons to whom such authority has been delegated; provided that a “required majority,” as defined in Section 57(o) of the 1940 Act, must approve each issuance of Awards and Dividend Equivalent Rights in accordance with Section 61(a)(4)(A)(iv) of the 1940 Act. If administration is delegated to a Committee, the Committee shall have, in connection with the administration of the Plan, the powers theretofore possessed by the Board, including the power to delegate to a subcommittee any of the administrative powers the Committee is authorized to exercise (and references in this Plan to the Board, other than the Board reference at the end of this sentence and the Board references in the last sentence of this subsection (C), shall thereafter be to the Committee or subcommittee), subject, however, to such resolutions, not inconsistent with the provisions of the Plan, as may be adopted from time to time by the Board. The Board may abolish the Committee at any time and revest in the Board the administration of the Plan, unless such actions are prohibited by the condition of exemptive relief obtained from the Commission.
(D) Effect of the Board’s Decision. Determinations, interpretations and constructions made by the Board in good faith shall not be subject to review by any person and shall be final, binding and conclusive on all persons.
4. AWARD AGREEMENTS.
All Awards granted under the Plan will be evidenced by an agreement. The agreement documenting the Award shall contain such terms and conditions as the Board shall deem advisable. Agreements evidencing Awards made to different participants or at different times need not contain similar provisions. In the case of any discrepancy between the terms of the Plan and the terms of any Award agreement, the Plan provisions shall control.
5. SHARES SUBJECT TO THE PLAN; CERTAIN LIMITS.
(A) Share Reserve. The maximum aggregate number of shares of Stock that may be issued under the Plan pursuant to grants of Restricted Stock or Other Stock-Based Awards or the exercise of Options is three million six hundred thousand (3,600,000) shares.
(B) Reversion of Shares to the Share Reserve. If any Award shall for any reason expire or otherwise terminate, in whole or in part, the shares of Stock not acquired under such Award shall revert to and again become available for issuance under the Plan.
(C) Type of Shares. The shares of Stock subject to the Plan may be unissued shares or reacquired shares bought on the market or otherwise. No fractional shares of Stock will be delivered under the Plan.
(D) Limits on Individual Grants. The maximum number of shares of Stock for which any Employee or Employee Director may be granted Awards in any calendar year is three hundred thousand (300,000) shares.
(E) Limits on Grants of Restricted Stock. The combined maximum amount of Restricted Stock that may be issued under the Plan and the Non-Employee Director Plan will be 10% of the outstanding shares of Stock on the effective date of the plans plus 10% of the number of shares of Stock issued or delivered by the Company (other than pursuant to compensation plans) during the term of the plans. No one person shall be granted Awards of Restricted Stock relating to more than 25% of the shares available for issuance under this Plan.
(F) No Grants in Contravention of 1940 Act. At all times during such periods as the Company qualifies or is intended to qualify as a “business development company,” no Award may be granted under the Plan if the grant of such Award would cause the Company to violate the 1940 Act, including, without limitation, Section 61(a)(4), and, if otherwise approved for grant, shall be void and of no effect.
(G) Limits on Number of Awards. The amount of voting securities that would result from the exercise of all of the Company’s outstanding warrants, options, and rights, together with any Restricted Stock issued pursuant to this Plan and the Non-Employee Director Plan, at the time of issuance shall not exceed 25% of the outstanding voting securities of the Company, except that if the amount of voting securities that would result from the exercise of all of the Company’s outstanding warrants, options, and rights issued to the Company’s directors, officers, and employees, together with any Restricted Stock issued pursuant to this Plan and the Non-Employee Director Plan, would exceed 15% of the outstanding voting securities of the Company, then the total amount of voting securities that would result from the exercise of all outstanding warrants, options, and rights, together with any Restricted Stock issued pursuant to this Plan and the Non-Employee Director Plan, at the time of issuance shall not exceed 20% of the outstanding voting securities of the Company.
(H) Date of Award’s Grant: The date on which the “required majority,” as defined in Section 57(o) of the 1940 Act, approves the issuance of an Award will be deemed the date on which such Award is granted.
Incentive Stock Options may be granted to Employees or Employee Directors of the Company or a “parent” or “subsidiary” corporation of the Company as those terms are used in Section 424 of the Code.
Awards other than Incentive Stock Options may be granted to both Employees and Employee Directors. By accepting any Award granted hereunder, the Participant agrees to the terms of the Award and the Plan. Notwithstanding any provision of this Plan to the contrary, awards of an acquired company that are converted, replaced or adjusted in connection with the acquisition may contain terms and conditions that are inconsistent with the terms and conditions specified herein, as determined by the Board.
7. OPTION PROVISIONS.
Each Option shall be evidenced by a written agreement containing such terms and conditions as the Board shall deem appropriate. All Options shall be separately designated Incentive Stock Options or Non-statutory Stock Options at the time of grant, and, if certificates are issued, a separate certificate or certificates shall be issued for shares of Stock purchased on exercise of each type of Option. The provisions of separate Options need not be identical, but, to the extent relevant, each Option shall include (through incorporation by reference or otherwise) the substance of each of the following provisions:
(A) Time and Manner of Exercise. Unless the Board expressly provides otherwise, an Option will not be deemed to have been exercised until the Board receives a notice of exercise (in a form acceptable to the Board) signed by the appropriate person and accompanied by any payment required under the Award, as further described below. If the Option is exercised by any person other than the Participant, the Board may require satisfactory evidence that the person exercising the Option has the right to do so. No Option shall be exercisable after the expiration of ten (10) years from the date on which it was granted.
Each exercise of an Option hereunder shall be subject to the Participant’s having made arrangements satisfactory to the Board for the full and timely payment of the applicable exercise price for such Option. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the Participant may satisfy the applicable exercise price requirements under an Option Award by tendering a check (acceptable to the Board) for the full amount of such exercise price. Additionally, the Company may, in its sole discretion, permit the satisfaction of the applicable exercise price requirements (or a portion thereof) under an Option Award by withholding from the Option, the number of vested shares of Stock awarded under the Option with a Fair Market Value (as defined below) as of the date of such transaction equal to such exercise price (“cashless exercise”). Shares that are used to settle exercise price obligations pursuant to this Section 7(A) shall be included as “shares of Stock” for purposes of the calculations set forth in Section 5.
(B) Exercise Price of an Option. The exercise price of each Option shall be not less than (i) if Shares are listed on any stock exchange or national market system, the listed price per Share as of such date, and (ii) if Shares are not listed on any stock exchange or national market system, the current market value of, or if no such market value exists, the current net asset value of, the stock subject to the Option as determined in good faith by the Board on the date the Option is granted provided, however, that in any event the current market value will be determined in a manner consistent with the provisions of the Section 409A regulations excluding certain options from being subject to Section 409A (the “Fair Market Value”). In the case of an Option granted to a 10% Holder and intended to qualify as an Incentive Stock Option, the exercise price will not be less than 110% of the Fair Market Value determined as of the date of grant. A “10% Holder” is an individual owning stock possessing more than 10% of the total combined voting power of all classes of stock of the Company or its parent or subsidiary corporations. No such Stock Option, once granted, may be repriced other than in accordance with the 1940 Act and the applicable stockholder approval requirements of any stock exchange or national market system on which the Shares are listed, and in a manner that would continue to exclude the option from being subject to Section 409A of the Code.
(C) Consideration. The purchase price for Stock acquired pursuant to an Option shall be paid in full at the time of exercise either (i) in cash, or, if so permitted by the Board and if permitted by the 1940 Act and otherwise legally permissible, (ii) through a broker-assisted exercise program acceptable to the Board, (iii) by such other means of payment as may be acceptable to the Board, or (iv) in any combination of the foregoing permitted forms of payment.
(D) Transferability of an Incentive Stock Option. An Incentive Stock Option shall not be transferable except by will or by the laws of descent and distribution and shall be exercisable during the lifetime of the Participant only by the Participant.
(E) Transferability of a Non-statutory Stock Option. A Non-statutory Stock Option shall be transferable by will or by the laws of descent and distribution, or, to the extent provided by the Board, by gift to a Permitted Transferee, and a Non-statutory Stock Option that is nontransferable except at death shall be exercisable during the lifetime of the Participant only by the Participant.
(F) Limitation on Repurchase Rights. If an Option gives the Company the right to repurchase shares of Common Stock issued pursuant to the Plan upon termination of employment of such Participant, the terms of such repurchase right must comply with the 1940 Act.
(G) Exercisability. The Board may determine the time or times at which an Option will vest or become exercisable and the terms on which an Option requiring exercise will remain exercisable. Options may further be subject to such forfeiture conditions as the Board may choose to impose.
(H) Termination of Continuous Service. Unless the Board expressly provides otherwise, immediately upon the cessation of a Participant’s Continuous Service that portion, if any, of any Option held by the Participant or the Participant’s Permitted Transferee that is not then exercisable will terminate and the balance will remain exercisable for the lesser of (i) a period of three months or (ii) the period ending on the latest date on which such Option could have been exercised without regard to this Section 6(H), and will thereupon terminate, provided that, if the Board in its sole discretion determines that the cessation of a Participant’s Continuous Service resulted for reasons that cast such discredit on the Participant as to justify immediate termination of his or her Options, all Options then held by the Participant or the Participant’s Permitted Transferee will immediately terminate.
8. RESTRICTED STOCK AND RESTRICTED STOCK UNIT PROVISIONS.
Each grant of Restricted Stock and Restricted Stock Units shall be evidenced by a written agreement containing such terms and conditions as the Board shall deem appropriate. The provisions of separate grants of Restricted Stock and Restricted Stock Units need not be identical, but, to the extent relevant, each grant shall include (through incorporation by reference or otherwise) the substance of each of the following provisions:
(A) Consideration. To the extent permitted by the 1940 Act, Awards of Restricted Stock and Restricted Stock Units may be made in exchange for past services or other lawful consideration.
(B) Transferability of Restricted Stock. Except as the Board otherwise expressly provides, Restricted Stock and Restricted Stock Unit Awards shall not be transferable other than by will or by the laws of descent and distribution.
(C) Vesting. The Board may determine the time or times at which shares of Restricted Stock will vest.
(D) Termination of Continuous Service. Unless the Board expressly provides otherwise, immediately upon the cessation of a Participant’s Continuous Service that portion, if any, of any Restricted Stock held by the Participant or the Participant’s Permitted Transferee that is not then vested will thereupon terminate and the unvested shares will be returned to the Company and will be available to be issued as Awards under this Plan.
(E) Payment of Restricted Share Units. Each Restricted Stock Unit shall have a value equal to the Fair Market Value of a share of Stock. Restricted Stock Units shall be paid in cash, shares of Stock, other securities or other property, as determined in the sole discretion of the Board, upon the lapse of the restrictions applicable thereto, or otherwise in accordance with the applicable Award agreement. The applicable Award agreement will specify whether a Participant will be entitled to receive Dividend Rights in respect of Restricted Stock Units at the time of any payment of dividends to stockholders on shares of Stock. If the applicable Award agreement specifies that a Participant will be entitled to receive dividend rights, (i) the amount of any such dividend right shall equal the amount that would be payable to the Participant as a stockholder in respect of a number of shares of Stock equal to the number of Restricted Stock Units then credited to the Participant, (ii) any such dividend right shall be paid in accordance with the Company’s payment practices as may be established from time to time and as of the date on which such dividend would have been payable in respect of outstanding shares of Stock, and (iii) the applicable Award Agreement will specify whether
dividend equivalents shall be paid in respect of Restricted Share Units that are not yet vested. Except as otherwise determined by the Committee at or after grant, Restricted Share Units may not be sold, assigned, transferred, pledged, hypothecated or otherwise encumbered or disposed of, and all Restricted Share Units and all rights of the grantee to such Restricted Share Units shall terminate, without further obligation on the part of the Company, unless the grantee remains in continuous employment of the Company for the entire restricted period in relation to which such Restricted Share Units were granted and unless any other restrictive conditions relating to the Restricted Share Unit Award are met.
9. PERFORMANCE RESTRICTED STOCK UNIT AND OTHER PERFORMANCE-BASED AWARDS.
(A) Grant. The Committee shall have sole and complete authority to determine the Participants who shall receive a Performance Award, which shall consist of a right that is (i) denominated in cash or shares of Stock (including, but not limited to, Restricted Stock and Performance Restricted Stock Units), (ii) valued and/or vested, as determined by the Committee, in accordance with the achievement of such performance goals during such performance periods as the Committee shall establish, and (iii) settled or payable at such time and in such form as the Committee shall determine.
(B) Terms and Conditions. Subject to the terms of the Plan and any applicable Award Agreement, the Committee shall determine the performance goals and/or objectives to be achieved during any performance period, the length of any performance period, the amount of any Performance Award and the amount and kind of any payment or transfer to be made pursuant to any Performance Award, and may amend specific provisions of the Performance Award.
(C) Payment of Performance Awards. Performance Awards may be paid or settled in a lump sum or in installments following the close of the performance period or, in accordance with the procedures established by the Committee, on a deferred basis. Termination of employment prior to the end of any performance period will result in the forfeiture of the Performance Award unless the Award agreement provides otherwise, and no payments will be made. A Participant’s rights to any Performance Award may not be sold, assigned, transferred, pledged, hypothecated or otherwise encumbered or disposed of in any manner, except by will or the laws of descent and distribution, and/or except as the Committee may determine at or after grant.
10. OTHER STOCK-BASED AWARDS.
The Board shall have the authority to determine the Participants who shall receive Other Stock-Based Awards, which shall consist of any right that is (i) not an Award described in above and (ii) an Award of shares of Stock or an Award denominated or payable in, valued in whole or in part by reference to, or otherwise based on or related to, shares of Stock (including, without limitation, securities convertible into shares of Stock), as deemed by the Board to be consistent with the purposes of the Plan. Subject to the terms of the Plan and any applicable Award agreement, the Board shall determine the terms and conditions of any such Other Stock-Based Award.
(A) Acceleration. The Board shall have the power to accelerate the time at which an Award or any portion thereof vests or may first be exercised, regardless of the tax or other consequences to the Participant or the Participant’s Permitted Transferee resulting from such acceleration.
(B) Stockholder Rights. No Participant or other person shall be deemed to be the holder of, or to have any of the rights of a holder with respect to, any shares of Stock subject to an Option or Restricted Stock Unit Award unless and until such Award has been delivered to the Participant or other person upon exercise of the Award. Holders of Restricted Stock shall have all the rights of a holder upon issuance of the Restricted Stock Award including, without limitation, voting rights and the right to receive dividends.
(C) No Employment or Other Service Rights. Nothing in the Plan or any instrument executed or Award granted pursuant thereto shall confer upon any Participant any right to continue in the employment of, or to continue to serve as a director of, the Company or an Affiliate or shall affect the right of the Company or an Affiliate to terminate (i) the employment of the Participant (if the Participant is an Employee) with or without notice and with or without cause or (ii) the service of an Employee Director (if
the Participant is an Employee Director) pursuant to the Bylaws of the Company or an Affiliate and any applicable provisions of the corporate law of the state in which the Company or the Affiliate is incorporated. Nothing in the Plan will be construed as giving any person any rights as a stockholder except as to shares of Stock actually issued under the Plan. The loss of existing or potential profit in Awards will not constitute an element of damages in the event of termination of service for any reason, even if the termination is in violation of an obligation of the Company or an Affiliate to the Participant.
(D) Legal Conditions on Delivery of Stock. The Company will not be obligated to deliver any shares of Stock pursuant to the Plan or to remove any restriction from shares of Stock previously delivered under the Plan until: (i) the Company is satisfied that all legal matters in connection with the issuance and delivery of such shares have been addressed and resolved; (ii) if the outstanding Stock is at the time of delivery listed on any stock exchange or national market system, the shares to be delivered have been listed or authorized to be listed on such exchange or system upon official notice of issuance; and (iii) all conditions of the Award have been satisfied or waived. If the sale of Stock has not been registered under the Securities Act, the Company may require, as a condition to the grant or the exercise of the Award, such representations or agreements as counsel for the Company may consider appropriate to avoid violation of the Securities Act. The Company may require that certificates evidencing Stock issued under the Plan bear an appropriate legend reflecting any restriction on transfer applicable to such Stock, and the Company may hold the certificates pending lapse of the applicable restrictions.
(E) Withholding Obligations. Each grant or exercise of an Award granted hereunder shall be subject to the Participant’s having made arrangements satisfactory to the Board for the full and timely satisfaction of all federal, state, local and other tax withholding requirements applicable to such grant, exercise or exchange. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the Participant may satisfy such withholding requirements by tendering a check (acceptable to the Board) for the full amount of such withholding. Additionally, the Company may, in its sole discretion, satisfy any withholding requirements (or a portion thereof) by withholding from an Award, vested Shares awarded under this Plan, with a Fair Market Value as of the date of such transaction equal to such required withholding amounts (“net share settlement”). Shares that are used to settle tax withholding obligations pursuant to this Section 11(E) shall be included as “shares of Stock” for purposes of the calculations set forth in Section 5.
In the event the Company or an Affiliate becomes liable for tax withholding with respect to an Option prior to the date of exercise, the Company may require the Participant to remit the required tax withholding by separate check acceptable to the Company or may make such other arrangements (including withholding from other payments to the Participant or net share settlement) for the satisfaction of such withholding as it determines.
(F) Section 409A. Awards under the Plan are intended either to qualify for an exemption from Section 409A or to comply with the requirements thereof, and shall be construed accordingly.
12. ADJUSTMENTS UPON CHANGES IN STOCK.
(A) Capitalization Adjustments. In the event of a stock dividend, stock split or combination of shares (including a reverse stock split), recapitalization or other change in the Company’s capital structure, the Board will make appropriate adjustments to the maximum number of shares specified in Section 5(A) that may be delivered under the Plan, to the maximum per-participant share limit described in Section 5(D) and will also make appropriate adjustments to the number and kind of shares of stock or securities subject to Awards then outstanding or subsequently granted, any exercise prices relating to Awards and any other provision of Awards affected by such change. To the extent consistent with qualification of Incentive Stock Options under Section 422 of the Code and continued exclusion from or compliance with Section 409A of the Code, where applicable, the Board may also make adjustments of the type described in the preceding sentence to take into account distributions to stockholders other than those provided for in such sentence, or any other event, if the Board determines that adjustments are appropriate to avoid distortion in the operation of the Plan and to preserve the value of Awards granted hereunder; provided, however, that the exercise price of Awards granted under the Plan will not be adjusted unless the Company receives an exemptive order from the Securities and Exchange Commission or written confirmation from the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission that the Company may do so.
(B) Covered Transaction. Except as otherwise provided in an Award, in the event of a Covered Transaction, each Award will become fully vested or exercisable prior to the Covered Transaction on a basis that gives the holder of the Award a reasonable opportunity, as determined by the Board, to participate as a stockholder in the Covered Transaction following vesting or exercise, and the Award will terminate upon consummation of the Covered Transaction.
13. DIVIDEND EQUIVALENT RIGHTS.
The Board may provide for the payment of amounts in lieu of cash dividends or other cash distributions (“Dividend Equivalent Rights”) with respect to Stock subject to an Award; provided, however, that grants of Dividend Equivalent Rights must be approved by order of the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Board may impose such terms, restrictions and conditions on Dividend Equivalent Rights, including the date such rights will terminate, as it deems appropriate, and may terminate, amend or suspend such Dividend Equivalent Rights at any time without the consent of the Participant or Participants to whom such Dividend Equivalent Rights have been granted, if any.
14. AMENDMENT OF THE PLAN AND AWARDS.
The Board may at any time or times amend the Plan or any outstanding Award for any purpose which may at the time be permitted by law, and may at any time terminate the Plan as to any future grants of Awards; provided, that except as otherwise expressly provided in the Plan the Board may not, without the Participant’s consent, alter the terms of an Award so as to affect substantially and adversely the Participant’s rights under the Award, unless the Board expressly reserved the right to do so at the time of the grant of the Award. Any amendments to the Plan shall be conditioned upon stockholder approval only to the extent, if any, such approval is required by law (including the Code and applicable stock exchange requirements), as determined by the Board.
Any amendment required to be approved by stockholders under the laws of Maryland, applicable securities laws or the rules of any stock exchange or national market system will not be effective until so approved. Any amendments required to be approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission will not be effective until so approved.
15. TERMINATION OR SUSPENSION OF THE PLAN.
(A) Plan Term. The Board may suspend or terminate the Plan at any time. Unless sooner terminated, the Plan shall terminate on the day before the tenth (10th) anniversary of the date the Plan is initially adopted by the Board or approved by the stockholders of the Company, whichever is earlier. No Awards may be granted under the Plan while the Plan is suspended or after it is terminated.
(B) No Impairment of Rights. Suspension or termination of the Plan shall not impair rights and obligations under any Awards granted while the Plan is in effect except with the written consent of the Participant.
16. EFFECTIVE DATE OF PLAN.
The Plan shall become effective upon approval by the stockholders of the Company, which approval shall be within twelve (12) months before or after the date the Plan is adopted by the Board; provided, however, that the Plan shall not be effective with respect to an Award of Restricted Stock or the grant of Dividend Equivalent Rights unless the Company has received an order of the Commission that permits such Award or grant (the “Effective Date”).
17. 1940 ACT.
No provision of this Plan is intended to contravene any portion of the 1940 Act, and in the event of any conflict between the provisions of the Plan or any Award and the 1940 Act, the applicable Section of the 1940 Act shall control and all Awards under the Plan shall be so modified. All Participants holding such modified Awards shall be notified of the change to their Awards and such change shall be binding on such Participants.
18. INFORMATION RIGHTS OF PARTICIPANTS
The Company shall provide to each Participant who acquires Stock pursuant to the Plan, not less frequently than annually, copies of annual financial statements (which need not be audited). The Company shall not be required to provide such statements to key employees whose duties in connection with the Company assure their access to equivalent information.
If any provision of this Plan or any Award is or becomes or is deemed to be invalid, illegal, or unenforceable in any jurisdiction or as to any Participant or Award, or would disqualify this Plan or any Award under any applicable law, such provision shall be construed or deemed amended to conform to the applicable laws, or if it cannot be construed or deemed amended without, in the determination of the Board, materially altering the intent of this Plan or the Award, such provision shall be stricken as to such jurisdiction, Participant or Award and the remainder of this Plan and any such Award shall remain in full force and effect.
20. OTHER COMPENSATION ARRANGEMENTS
The existence of the Plan or the grant of any Award will not in any way affect the Company’s right to award a person bonuses or other compensation in addition to Awards under the Plan.
21. WAIVER OF JURY TRIAL.
By accepting an Award under the Plan, each Participant waives any right to a trial by jury in any action, proceeding or counterclaim concerning any rights under the Plan and any Award, or under any amendment, waiver, consent, instrument, document or other agreement delivered or which in the future may be delivered in connection therewith, and agrees that any such action, proceedings or counterclaim shall be tried before a court and not before a jury. By accepting an Award under the Plan, each Participant certifies that no officer, representative, or attorney of the Company has represented, expressly or otherwise, that the Company would not, in the event of any action, proceeding or counterclaim, seek to enforce the foregoing waivers.
22. LIMITATION ON LIABILITY.
Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the Plan, neither the Company nor the Board, nor any person acting on behalf of the Company or the Board, shall be liable to any Participant or to the estate or beneficiary of any Participant by reason of any acceleration of income, or any additional tax, asserted by reason of the failure of an Award to satisfy the requirements of Section 422 or Section 409A or by reason of Section 4999 of the Code; provided, that nothing in this Section 21 shall limit the ability of the Board or the Company to provide by express agreement with a Participant for a gross-up payment or other payment in connection with any such tax or additional tax.
23. GOVERNING LAW.
The Plan and all Awards and actions hereunder shall be governed by the laws of the state of Maryland, with regard to the choice of law principles of any jurisdiction.