The corporate minutes template is documentation for the governance of your corporation. If you are in charge of preparing corporate minutes during official meetings then you are performing a very important task.
Table of Contents
- 1 What are corporate minutes?
- 2 How long you should keep the corporate minutes?
- 3 The purpose of corporate meeting minutes:
- 4 How to write minutes of a meeting?
- 5 Do you have to file corporate minutes?
- 6 Conclusion:
- 7 Faqs (Frequently Asked Questions)
- 8 When should you use corporate minutes?
What are corporate minutes?
Corporate minutes are a document used to include the topics and issues dealt with during formal meetings. The secretary is basically in charge of recording the corporate minutes. This document has a summary of the most important decisions made. Also, there is no need to contain minute details.
There are different things you should include in your corporate minutes template. Include the following information to make it effective;
- The date, time, and location of the meeting
- Everyone present at the meeting
- Who conducts the meeting?
- The reason for the meeting
- The main points on the meeting agenda
- The results of a vote
- When the meeting got the end
How long you should keep the corporate minutes?
After recording the minutes, you should keep them with your other important corporate documents like bylaws, resolutions, and articles of incorporation. You have to keep the corporate minutes for a minimum of seven years. The corporation members may review the meeting minutes by placing reasonable request to the corporation.
The purpose of corporate meeting minutes:
The main purpose of corporate meeting minutes is to record important decisions that are made in corporate meetings. Let us discuss below some benefits of this document;
- The written record of meeting minutes protects the personal liability of the owner. This is because corporation make decisions and actions on the basis of the business not the owner.
- The IRS during a company audit verifies whether or not you have followed the accurate tax rules for your business’ classification. Your meeting minutes protect you in this verification by indicating specific expenses such as travel expenses that were discussed in meetings and relevant to the company.
- Meeting minutes provide a written record of decisions and actions that act as reminder for all corporate members.
- Investors can also go through your corporate meeting minutes in order to check whether your board makes wise decisions.
How to write minutes of a meeting?
Here are some pointers for you on how to write minutes of a meeting;
Part#1: During the meeting
- You have to take notes during meeting. For this, bring a notepad with you so that during the meeting you can write down everything you see and hear.
- Make a list of all the people who are present at the meeting. Also, include those who are absent but they have to be there. Invited consultants and guests should also be part of your list.
- It is also important to write down the purpose of the meeting. There are several reasons for conducting the meeting.
- You should also identify that whether the attendees accepted the notes of the last meeting. On the meeting’s agenda, this should be the first item. If the prior meeting is continued then distribute in advance to everyone attending the meeting.
- You should listen carefully and take a lot of notes when the participants start discussing the agenda items. The discussion that occurred for each agenda item, include its summary in your document. Accuracy is important so you should pay attention to what you are doing and listen carefully to the ones who are talking.
- If, for perusal, any of the participants distribute documents then take note of these documents. Write the title and the date of the document. Moreover, take a copy of distributed documents in order to attach them to your corporate minutes.
- Take note of the results if a vote happened during the meeting. Count how many people voted positively, negatively, and abstentions.
- When the meeting comes to an end, take note of the details. Enter the time specifically when the meeting got end and when they set the next meeting.
Part#2: After the meeting
- Right after the meeting, type the corporate minutes. At that time, you can remember all the details of the meeting and thus make a complete report. Use complete sentences and accurate grammar while typing the minutes.
- Determine the basic details of the meeting such as the time, the date, the venue, and all of the participants.
- Take note of the time when the in charge of the meeting started it. Also, mention either they accepted the minutes of the previous meeting or not.
- During the meeting, the reports or presentations you received, mention them. In some meetings, participants should give reports. On the other hand, there are some meetings where a particular person provides a presentation that is related to an item on the agenda.
- Then, summarize the discussions created regarding the items on the agenda. You should focus on actions or resolutions that are taken regarding these items. Make use of simple and clear language. Never include any unnecessary adjectives or words that make your document confusing. Additionally, determine all the documents that are involved.
- You have to give a fuller summary for the most important items on the agenda. Some of the agenda items are more important during meetings than others. Therefore, you should know how to determine the importance of these items. Some items need special care if there is a possibility of legal issues arising. In such circumstances, judges and lawyers use the document you make in order to know how the board of directors acted.
- After writing down the summaries of all the agenda items, include the following remaining information;
1- Announcements about any issues and upcoming events.
2- An executive session conducted by the board when other participants left the meeting.
3- The meeting’s adjournment.
- After making this draft, print it out. Then, distribute it to those in charge of reviewing and approving the document. You must have to follow the policies of your company regarding corporate minutes.
- Incorporate all of the comments or revisions that the Board of Directors makes or asks you to make.
- After finalizing you document, there is no need to make any further changes to it. You can only finalize the document after receiving the final approval from the Board. If you spot any typos, wrong spelling, and other minor mistakes then you can make changes. But you don’t have to make any substantive changes to the document until approved by the board chairperson.
- Finally, print out a copy of the approved and finalized document. Keep it in your file. However, you can place it along with all of your other corporate or official records.
- During the meeting for review, if any document got distributed then before filling attach a copy along with the corporate minutes.
Do you have to file corporate minutes?
Basically, corporate minutes are the official documents recorded in any major decisions and activities done by the company. You must keep these documents in your file for future references even if your company has one owner. You have to see the requirement of a corporate meeting according to the law in the location of your company. Companies are generally allowed to have at least one annual meeting every year.
Additionally, you should store corporate minutes in a secure location as they are legal documents. You just have to print a copy of it and keep it in a folder or a binder. It is also possible to secure save the file in a secure location in your computer.
In conclusion, a corporate minutes template is a legal and official document that keeps a record of any major decisions and activities done by the company during formal meeting. This document acts as written proof of all the decisions made during the meeting. Additionally, it should contain everything that has been discussed in the meeting.
Faqs (Frequently Asked Questions)
When should you use corporate minutes?
You should use corporate minutes when you have to create a written summary of the items discussed and the actions taken during the meeting.