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58 Baylor Law Review 63 (2006)


The hybrid nature of limited liability companies causes us to re-invent, or at least re-examine, many doctrinal wheels. This Article will reexamine one of the most practical of those wheels-the distinction between direct and derivative claims in the context of a closely-held limited liability company.

Case law concerning the direct/derivative distinction is still overwhelmingly from the law of corporations, although LLC cases are now being reported with some frequency. LLC cases routinely analogize to, or borrow from, the corporate law. This Article encompasses that law, analyzes LLC developments, and argues that courts should (i) avoid the "special injury" rule, (ii) embrace the "direct harm" approach, and (iii) engraft to the direct harm approach an exception applicable when those in control of a limited liability company harm the company with the "purpose and effect" of injuring a particular member.