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41 votes

How can I sell my shares in a privately-owned company I used to be employed by?

No, private companies have no obligation to help you sell their shares. It may not be legal, but there is very little you can do short of suing the company. Great article about this from the Wall ...
Craig W's user avatar
  • 15.9k
25 votes

How can I sell my shares in a privately-owned company I used to be employed by?

The company going public is probably your best chance of being able to sell your shares. Therefore, your first job should probably be to try and see if there are any indicators that this might still ...
TripeHound's user avatar
  • 9,170
23 votes
Accepted

When my stock options fully vest, is that the equivalent of a pay cut?

Yes, you are thinking about this correctly, and are not being greedy. If your options are fully vested and you are being paid a below market salary, then you have no economic incentive to stay at your ...
minou's user avatar
  • 7,536
23 votes
Accepted

What are my rights as a small investor in private equity, and what can I do about the company not responding to me?

You have a right to turn up at the AGM (and any special general meetings), and ask questions there. Otherwise, they are free to ignore you. They are unlikely to give information about the business' ...
Simon B's user avatar
  • 10.4k
23 votes
Accepted

Could very old employee stock options still be accessible and viable?

Probably not. A stock option usually has an expiration date. If you want to convert a stock option into an actual stock (which could indeed still have value), you need to exercise the option before ...
Philipp's user avatar
  • 24k
16 votes
Accepted

Company just got acquired. What does this mean for my common stock?

You should call up the company and ask that. (HR should be able to handle this.) Stock options cover a range of possibilities, and you'll probably need to contact them anyway to get this taken care of....
user3757614's user avatar
  • 4,353
15 votes
Accepted

Is there a reason to exercise a stock option as soon as it vests?

Advantages Long-term capital gains tax rates. If your company has a liquidity event, if it's been at least a year since you exercised your options, it will be considered a long-term capital gain and ...
Craig W's user avatar
  • 15.9k
15 votes

When my stock options fully vest, is that the equivalent of a pay cut?

Am I thinking about this correctly? If I'm just being greedy here, let me know. No, you're not thinking about this correctly. You got a retention bonus, even if it was "sold" to you as some ...
littleadv's user avatar
  • 177k
11 votes

Why don't share prices of a company rise every other Friday when the company buys shares for its own employees?

This is an old question that has an accepted answer, but it has gotten bumped due to an edit and the answers given are incorrect. I am assuming this means that every other Friday, the company is ...
D Stanley's user avatar
  • 137k
10 votes

How can I sell my shares in a privately-owned company I used to be employed by?

In general, shares in a private company aren't worth anything. (Unless the company is paying dividends or they give voting privileges or something.) There's no good way to convert them into cash ...
user3757614's user avatar
  • 4,353
10 votes

Acquisition/Share holding question

If/When your company gets acquired, your 10,000 shares will either be bought outright at some fixed price based on the terms of the acquisition and you will receive cash, or they will be converted to ...
D Stanley's user avatar
  • 137k
7 votes

What does "cashes in many of his Enron share options" mean?

"Cashing in" means converting to cash; selling his shares. The wrinkle is that he didn't actually have the shares at the time he wanted to sell them, only vested share options that he had been given ...
MD-Tech's user avatar
  • 9,025
6 votes

What is the total underpayment penalty for not paying AMT immediately?

I think you might be overthinking this. In general, the alternative minimum tax (AMT) due (if any) is not due as of the date(s) when the events that triggered the AMT occurred and there is no need to ...
Dilip Sarwate's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Can a wash sale exist across calendar years?

Yes - in fact that's the reason for the wash sale rule, to keep people from selling at the end of one year to claim a tax deduction for the realized loss, then rebuying at the beginning of the next ...
D Stanley's user avatar
  • 137k
6 votes

Is there likely to be a market for private company incentive equity if it's assessed value is more than it's worth?

It depends on the company charter. Some companies allow employees trading their shares in what is called "over the counter" (OTC) market. Not all companies allow that, some companies do not ...
littleadv's user avatar
  • 177k
6 votes

Is it considered insider trading selling options on company gifted shares of stock?

It's only insider trading if you trade based on material, nonpublic information. Simply trading stock (or options on that stock) of a company you work for is not necessarily insider trading. However, ...
D Stanley's user avatar
  • 137k
5 votes
Accepted

RSU taxation: when am I taxed, and how much?

Restricted Stock Units are different from stock options because instead of buying them at a particular strike price, you receive the actual shares of stock. They are taxed as ordinary income at the ...
NL - Apologize to Monica's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

Will I lose the AMT tax I paid if my startup fails?

This is a tax, not a deposit. So no, you will not get it back. You will be able to use your AMT credit, under certain conditions, see the instructions to form 8801. Obviously, the actual value of the ...
littleadv's user avatar
  • 177k
5 votes
Accepted

Why is there a significant disparity between 409A valuation and fair market value?

There a few factors at play here. First, let me address the difference between the 409A valuation and the recent round of financing. Venture capital investors typically invest in preferred shares of a ...
will_k's user avatar
  • 66
5 votes

Does AMT affect cost basis of future capital gains?

You don't pay taxes on the discount ($1->$2) twice. You actually have a separate cost basis for your shares in the normal tax system versus AMT. Google 'AMT cost basis' and you'll see examples like ...
Craig W's user avatar
  • 15.9k
5 votes
Accepted

What are the most common partner equity distribution for startups?

If you watch episodes of shark tank, you might gain some insight into the uniqueness of deals that are dependent upon a myriad of other factors. Having to choose, the three will typically split the ...
Pete B.'s user avatar
  • 76.7k
5 votes

Are stock options worth as much as shares?

In your comment you note that your company is not yet listed. This is important. So, what are stock options worth? Let's give some scenarios: 1: The company becomes public, and starts selling shares ...
user3757614's user avatar
  • 4,353
5 votes
Accepted

How much are my shares worth in the startup I work for?

There are a few important points you should be aware of. Based on your question I am assuming that your company has not gone public yet. Yes, the nominal value of each share is $10. However this is ...
Charles E. Grant's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Is there anything to do immediately after exercising stock options?

Much like if you had a large capital gain with no withholding, you should determine if you'll be at risk of an underpayment. Generally this means you end up owing more than $1000 at tax filing time, ...
Craig W's user avatar
  • 15.9k
4 votes
Accepted

Perform exercise-and-hold AND exercise-and-sell-to-cover?

The simplest thing to do here is to speak to your employer about what is allowed. This should be spelt out in your company's "Stock Options Plan" documentation. In particular, this document will ...
not-nick's user avatar
  • 6,418
4 votes

Are companies like EquityZen legitimate and useful?

Stuff I wish I had known, based on having done the following: Obtained employment at a startup that grants Incentive Stock Options (ISOs); Early-exercised a portion of my options when fair market ...
Casey L's user avatar
  • 199
4 votes
Accepted

Approximate IT company valuation (to proximate stock options value)

This situation sounds better than most, the company it seems likely to be profitable in the future. As such it is a good candidate to have a successful IPO. With that your stock options are likely ...
Pete B.'s user avatar
  • 76.7k
4 votes

Comparing stock purchase plans in offer letter

The legalese on those two you posted look pretty standard. The big change I saw is that on the second, the vesting after the first year is monthly, whereas the first one is yearly through the whole 4 ...
mjuarez's user avatar
  • 161
4 votes

Can an employee be paid 100% in stock

Companies that offer compensation in stock have to withhold the tax of the employee's income. This is common in RSU (Restricted Stock Unit) and RSA (Restricted Stock Award) arrangements that publicly ...
CQM's user avatar
  • 20.2k
4 votes
Accepted

ISO exercise limit before triggering AMT

Around $32,600 of discount/spread in exercised ISOs would give you a roughly equivalent total tax between the regular and AMT systems. With these numbers, under the regular tax system you'd pay $22,...
Craig W's user avatar
  • 15.9k

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