This excerpt taken from the VRSN 10-Q filed Nov 7, 2008.
4. Manner of Exercise.
4.1 Stock Option Exercise. To exercise this Option, Optionee (or in the case of exercise after Optionees death, Optionees executor, administrator, heir or legatee, as the case may be) must activate her/his E*Trade VeriSign Employee Stock Plan account (E*Trade) at https://us.etrade.com/e/t/user/login_sp . Once the E*Trade VeriSign Employee Stock Plan account has been activated, the exercise(s) can be executed on-line with E*Trade (the Online Exercise Agreement) or by following such other procedures as may be approved by the Company from time to time. If someone other than Optionee exercises this Option, then such person must submit documentation reasonably acceptable to the Company that such person has the right to exercise this Option.
4.2 Limitations on Exercise. This Option may not be exercised unless such exercise is in compliance with all applicable federal and state securities laws, as they are in effect on the date of exercise.
4.3 Payment. The Online Exercise Agreement (or other forms approved by the Company) shall be accompanied by full payment of the Exercise Price for the Shares being purchased in cash (by check), or where permitted by law:
(a) by cancellation of indebtedness of the Company to the Optionee;
(b) by surrender of shares of the Companys Common Stock that either: (1) have been owned by Optionee for more than six (6) months and have been paid for within the meaning of SEC Rule 144 (and, if such shares were purchased from the Company by use of a promissory note, such note has been fully paid with respect to such shares); or (2) were obtained by Optionee in the open public market; and (3) are clear of all liens, claims, encumbrances or security interests;
(c) by waiver of compensation due or accrued to Optionee for services rendered to the Company;
(d) provided that a public market for the Companys Common Stock exists: (1) through a same day sale commitment from Optionee and a broker-dealer that is a member of the National Association of Securities Dealers (an NASD Dealer) whereby Optionee irrevocably elects to exercise this Option and to sell a portion of the
Shares so purchased to pay for the Exercise Price and whereby the NASD Dealer irrevocably commits upon receipt of such Shares to forward the exercise price directly to the Company; or (2) through a margin commitment from Optionee and an NASD Dealer whereby Optionee irrevocably elects to exercise this Option and to pledge the Shares so purchased to the NASD Dealer in a margin account as security for a loan from the NASD Dealer in the amount of the Exercise Price, and whereby the NASD Dealer irrevocably commits upon receipt of such Shares to forward the Exercise Price directly to the Company; or
(e) by any combination of the foregoing.
4.4 Tax Withholding. Prior to the issuance of the Shares upon exercise of this Option, Optionee must pay or provide for any applicable federal or state withholding obligations of the Company. If the Committee permits, Optionee may provide for payment of withholding taxes upon exercise of this Option by requesting that the Company retain Shares with a Fair Market Value equal to the minimum amount of taxes required to be withheld. In such case, the Company shall issue the net number of Shares to the Optionee by deducting the Shares retained from the Shares issuable upon exercise.
4.5 Issuance of Shares. Provided that the exercise and payment are in form and substance satisfactory to counsel for the Company, the Company shall issue the Shares to Optionees E*Trade VeriSign Employee Stock Plan account, Optionees authorized assignee, or Optionees legal representative or shall deliver certificates representing the Shares with the appropriate legends affixed thereto.
5. Compliance with Laws and Regulations. The exercise of this Option and the issuance and transfer of Shares shall be subject to compliance by the Company and Optionee with all applicable requirements of federal and state securities laws and with all applicable requirements of any stock exchange on which the Companys Common Stock may be listed at the time of such issuance or transfer. Optionee understands that the Company is under no obligation to register or qualify the Shares with the SEC, any state securities commission or any stock exchange to effect such compliance.
6. Nontransferability of Option. This Option may not be transferred in any manner other than under the terms and conditions of the Plan or by will or by the laws of descent and distribution and may be exercised during the lifetime of Optionee only by Optionee. The terms of this Option shall be binding upon the executors, administrators, successors and assigns of Optionee.
7. Tax Consequences. Set forth below is a brief summary as of the date the Board adopted the Plan of some of the federal tax consequences of exercise of this Option and disposition of the Shares. THIS SUMMARY IS NECESSARILY INCOMPLETE, AND THE TAX LAWS AND REGULATIONS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE. OPTIONEE SHOULD CONSULT A TAX ADVISOR BEFORE EXERCISING THIS OPTION OR DISPOSING OF THE SHARES.
7.1 Exercise of Nonqualified Stock Option. There may be a regular federal income tax liability upon the exercise of this Option. Optionee will be treated as having received compensation income (taxable at ordinary income tax rates) equal to the excess, if any, of the fair market value of the Shares on the date of exercise over the Exercise Price. The Company may be required to withhold from Optionees compensation or collect from Optionee and pay to the applicable taxing authorities an amount equal to a percentage of this compensation income at the time of exercise.
7.2 Disposition of Shares. The sale of any shares received pursuant to the exercise of the NQSO is generally treated as capital gain or loss. If the Shares are held for more than twelve (12) months after the date of the transfer of the Shares pursuant to the exercise of an NQSO, any gain or loss realized on disposition of the Shares will be treated as long-term capital gain or loss.
8. Privileges of Stock Ownership. Optionee shall not have any of the rights of a stockholder with respect to any Shares until the Shares are issued to Optionee.
9. Interpretation. Any dispute regarding the interpretation of this Agreement shall be submitted by Optionee or the Company to the Committee for review. The resolution of such a dispute by the Committee shall be final and binding on the Company and Optionee.
10. Entire Agreement. The Plan is incorporated herein by reference. This Agreement and the Plan and the exercise process constitute the entire agreement and understanding of the parties hereto with respect to the subject matter hereof and supersede all prior understandings and agreements with respect to such subject matter.
11. Notices. Any notice required to be given or delivered to the Company shall be in writing and addressed to the Corporate Secretary of the Company at its principal corporate offices. Any notice required to be given or delivered to Participant shall be in writing (including email) and addressed to Participant at the participants Company email address, the address of record or to such other address as Participant may designate in writing from time to time to the Company or may be posted on the Participants E*Trade VeriSign employee stock plan account at www.etrade.com. All notices shall be deemed effectively given upon personal delivery, (i) three (3) days after deposit in the United States mail by certified or registered mail (return receipt requested), (ii) one (1) business day after its deposit with any return receipt express courier (prepaid), (iii) one (1) business day after transmission by fax or telecopier, (iv) upon receipt if sent by the Company to the Participants email address at the Company, or (v) upon posting on the Participants E*Trade VeriSign employee stock plan account at www.etrade.com.
12. Successors and Assigns. The Company may assign any of its rights under this Agreement. This Agreement shall be binding upon and inure to the benefit of the successors and assigns of the Company. Subject to the restrictions on transfer set forth herein, this Agreement shall be binding upon Optionee and Optionees heirs, executors, administrators, legal representatives, successors and assigns.
13. Governing Law. This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the internal laws of the State of California, without regard to that body of law pertaining to choice of law or conflict of law.
14. Acceptance. Optionee hereby acknowledges receipt of a copy of the Plan and this Agreement. Optionee has read and understands the terms and provisions thereof, and accepts this Option subject to all the terms and conditions of the Plan and this Agreement. Optionee acknowledges that there may be adverse tax consequences upon exercise of this Option or disposition of the Shares and that the Company recommends that Optionee should consult a tax advisor prior to such exercise or disposition. In the event that upon the 30th day after the Date of Grant, Optionee has not refused the Option by notice to the Company pursuant to Section 11 hereof, Optionee shall be deemed to have accepted the Option subject to all the terms and conditions of the Plan and the Agreement.