Q&A: Social and Environmental Responsibility

by Jason Yarashes

Q: I want social and environmental responsibility to be a primary consideration for my business. Can I address this goal during entity formation?

A: Current Oregon law permits owners to embed these goals into a business’s governing documents. If you form a corporation, your articles of incorporation can include a provision “authorizing or directing the corporation to conduct the business of the corporation in a manner that is environmentally and socially responsible.” If you form an LLC, your operating agreement can include provisions requiring members or managers to prioritize social and environmental responsibility. Proposed legislation in Oregon would recognize new entity forms—“benefit corporations” and “L3C” companies—that incorporate different standards for meeting social and environmental goals than traditional entity forms. Contact a business attorney for more information.

 

Originally published in the Portland Business Journal.