NOVL » Topics » Incentive Stock Options

This excerpt taken from the NOVL DEF 14A filed Feb 25, 2009.

Incentive Stock Options

In general, neither the grant nor exercise of an incentive stock option will cause the recognition of ordinary income by the participant, provided the participant does not dispose of the underlying shares until the later of two years from the date of the grant of the option or one year after the exercise of the option. However, the amount by which the fair market value of the shares at the time of exercise exceeds the exercise price will be treated as an item includable in the tax base upon which an “alternative minimum tax” may be imposed. In general, neither the grant nor the exercise of an incentive stock option will produce a tax deduction for the Company.

If the participant disposes of shares purchased pursuant to the exercise of an incentive stock option after the expiration of the later of two years from the date of the grant of the option and one year from the date of exercise, the gain or loss on the sale, based upon the difference between the amount realized and the exercise price, will constitute long-term capital gain or loss. If the shares purchased by a participant pursuant to the exercise of an incentive stock option are sold at a gain prior to the expiration of either of such periods, so much of the gain as does not exceed the difference between the exercise price and the lesser of the fair market value of the shares on the date of exercise or the amount realized on the date of sale will be taxable as ordinary income to the participant and a tax deduction will be allowable to the Company in an amount equal to the ordinary income recognized by the participant, assuming that a deduction is allowed under Section 162(m) of the Code.

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