What are Forfeited Shares?

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  • 20 Oct 2023
What are Forfeited Shares?

Key Highlights

  • Forfeited shares are shares revoked by a company due to non-payment or breaches in purchase terms, allowing the company to maintain financial stability.

  • After forfeiture, companies have the option to either cancel or reissue these shares.

  • Forfeited shares represent unpaid capital, and their reissue generates immediate cash flow.

  • Forfeiture affects market perception. Transparent communication is vital to maintaining investor confidence.

Forfeited shares refer to shares issued by a company that shareholders have failed to fully pay for, resulting in the forfeiture of those shares. Several reasons can lead to the forfeiture of shares.

1. Non-payment of Calls

Shareholders are often required to make payments, known as calls on their shares over a specific timeframe. Failure to make these payments within the stipulated period can result in the shares being forfeited.

2. Financial Difficulties

Shareholders may face financial difficulties that prevent them from fulfilling their financial obligations, such as making the required payments on their shares.

3. Shareholder Disputes

Disputes or conflicts among shareholders or with the company's management can lead to a refusal to make further payments on shares, leading to forfeiture.

4. Lack of Interest

Some shareholders may lose interest in their investment or decide that the shares are no longer attractive, choosing not to make further payments.

5. Strategic Decision

In some cases, companies may choose to forfeit shares intentionally, particularly when they believe that it is in the best interest of the company, or as part of a broader strategic decision.

6. Administrative Errors

Errors in record-keeping or communication can lead to misunderstandings and unintentional forfeiture of shares.

7. Regulatory Compliance

Companies must comply with specific regulations regarding share payments and issuance. Failure to do so can result in the forfeiture of shares.

The reissue of forfeited shares is a financial process through which a company reissues shares that were previously forfeited from shareholders due to non-payment of the subscription amount or other violations of the terms outlined in the company's prospectus.. Reissuing forfeited shares allows the company to raise additional capital without increasing its authorised share capital, making it a financially viable option for companies seeking to infuse funds into their operations.

Forfeited shares occur when a shareholder fails to pay the required amount for the shares he has agreed to buy, causing the company to take back the shares Once these shares are redeemed, the company has the right to cancel them or have them returned to it by new shareholders.

The decision to reissue forfeited shares can be influenced by a variety of factors, including the financial health of a company, market demand and regulatory considerations If a company decides to reissue forfeited shares,it usually follows a strict legal process.

Share forfeiture, the process of cancelling shares due to non-payment or violation of terms by shareholders, has several significant effects on both the company and the shareholders involved. Here's a breakdown of the effects of share forfeiture in a series of pointers.

1. Financial Impact on the Company

Forfeited shares often represent unpaid capital. Once these shares are forfeited, the company can resell them, generating immediate cash flow. Recovery of outstanding capital improves the company’s financial performance. It can use these funds for a variety of purposes such as repaying debt, expansion or investing in new businesses.Forfeiture can increase the level of financial strength of a company, which means it is able to meet its long-term obligations.

2. Impact on Shareholders

Shareholders whose shares have been forfeited lose their investment. This acts as a disincentive for potential shareholders, who could lose their money if payment obligations are not met. Forfeiture can affect the ownership structure. Divesting the shares of significant shareholders may change the balance of power among existing shareholders. If the forfeited shares are reissued at a higher price, existing shareholders will benefit from an increase in the company’s market capitalization and potential dividends.

3. Corporate Governance

Forfeiture can change the distribution of voting rights among shareholders. These changes may affect decision-making processes and corporate governance.

4. Market Perception and Investor Confidence

If forfeiture happens due to noncompliance, it could undermine investor confidence in the management and financial stability of the company. Forfeiture announcements can affect a company’s share price and market sentiment. Positive reactions can raise stock prices, while negative actions can send them down.

5. Legal and Regulatory Consequences

Companies have to comply with legal policies and procedures when taking shares. Failure to do this can result in legal challenges and penalties. Clear communication of the reasons for the forfeiture of shares is essential. Failure to disclose can lead to legal challenges and damage the company’s reputation.


Understanding forfeited shares is essential for both investors and companies operating in the stock market. Forfeited shares represent a financial consequence for shareholders who fail to meet their financial obligations, such as non-payment of subscription amounts or violating terms outlined in a company’s prospectus. This process acts as a safety net for companies, ensuring that shareholders fulfil their commitments, thus protecting the integrity of the company’s capital structure. Now you can invest wisely and stay in control of your investments with Kotak Securities user-friendly trading app, designed to empower you in every financial decision

FAQs on Forfeited Shares

Once a share is forfeited, shareholders usually lose ownership rights. They cannot reclaim the forfeited share unless the company decides to reissue it to them.

Forfeiture shares are typically reissued at the current market price, which may differ from the original price.

Yes, the reissue of forfeiture shares is influenced by market demand.

The reissue of forfeiture shares can impact a company's stock value. If managed strategically, it can enhance investor confidence, potentially leading to positive effects on the company's stock prices.

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