(a) No action shall be instituted or maintained in right of any domestic or foreign limited liability company by any member of the limited liability company unless both of the following conditions exist:
(1) The plaintiff alleges in the complaint that the plaintiff was a member of record, or beneficiary, at the time of the transaction or any part of the transaction of which the plaintiff complains, or that the plaintiff’s interest later devolved upon the plaintiff by operation of law from a member who was a member at the time of the transaction or any part of the transaction complained of. Any member who does not meet these requirements may nevertheless be allowed in the discretion of the court to maintain the action on a preliminary showing to and determination by the court, by motion and after a hearing at which the court shall consider any evidence, by affidavit or testimony, as it deems material, of all of the following:
(A) There is a strong prima facie case in favor of the claim asserted on behalf of the limited liability company.
(B) No other similar action has been or is likely to be instituted.
(C) The plaintiff acquired the interest before there was disclosure to the public or to the plaintiff of the wrongdoing of which plaintiff complains.
(D) Unless the action can be maintained, the defendant may retain a gain derived from defendant’s willful breach of a fiduciary duty.
(E) The requested relief will not result in unjust enrichment of the limited liability company or any member of the limited liability company.
(2) The plaintiff alleges in the complaint with particularity the plaintiff’s efforts to secure from the managers the action the plaintiff desires or the reasons for not making that effort, and alleges further that the plaintiff has either informed the limited liability company or the managers in writing of the ultimate facts of each cause of action against each defendant or delivered to the limited liability company or the managers a true copy of the complaint that the plaintiff proposes to file.
(b) In any action referred to in subdivision (a), at any time within 30 days after service of summons upon the limited liability company or upon any defendant who is a manager of the limited liability company or held that position at the time of the acts complained of, the limited liability company or the defendant may move the court for an order, upon notice and hearing, requiring the plaintiff to furnish security as hereinafter provided. The motion shall be based upon one or both of the following grounds:
(1) That there is no reasonable possibility that the prosecution of the cause of action alleged in the complaint against the moving party will benefit the limited liability company or its members.
(2) That the moving party, if other than the limited liability company did not participate in the transaction complained of in any capacity. The court, on application of the limited liability company or any defendant, may, for good cause shown, extend the 30-day period for an additional period not exceeding 60 days.
(1) At the hearing upon any motion pursuant to subdivision (b), the court shall consider evidence, written or oral, by witnesses or affidavit, as may be material to the ground upon which the motion is based, or to a determination of the probable reasonable expenses, including attorney’s fees, of the limited liability company and the moving party that will be incurred in the defense of the action.
(2) If the court determines, after hearing the evidence adduced by the parties, that the moving party has established a probability in support of any of the grounds upon which the motion is based, the court shall fix the nature and amount of security, not to exceed fifty thousand dollars ($50,000), to be furnished by the plaintiff for reasonable expenses, including attorney’s fees, that may be incurred by the moving party and the limited liability company in connection with the action. A ruling by the court on the motion shall not be a determination of any issue in the action or of the merits of the action. The amount of the security may thereafter be increased or decreased in the discretion of the court upon a showing that the security provided has or may become inadequate or is excessive, but the court shall not in any event increase the total amount of the security beyond fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) in the aggregate for all defendants. If the court, upon a motion, makes a determination that security shall be furnished by the plaintiff as to any one or more defendants, the action shall be dismissed as to that defendant or those defendants, unless the security required by the court has been furnished within any reasonable time as shall be fixed by the court. The limited liability company and the moving party shall have recourse to the security in the amount that the court determines upon the termination of the action.
(d) If the plaintiff, either before or after a motion is made pursuant to subdivision (b), or any order or determination pursuant to that motion, posts good and sufficient bond or bonds in the aggregate amount of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) to secure the reasonable expenses of the parties entitled to make the motion, the plaintiff shall be deemed to have complied with the requirements of this section and with any order for security made pursuant to this section. Any motion then pending shall be dismissed and no further or additional bond or other security shall be required.
(e) If a motion is filed pursuant to subdivision (b), no pleadings need be filed by the limited liability company or any other defendant and the prosecution of the action shall be stayed until 10 days after the motion has been disposed of.
(Added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 419, Sec. 20. Effective January 1, 2013. Operative January 1, 2014, by Sec. 32 of Ch. 419.) California Corporations Code Section 17708.02.