17 CFR § 270.30e-3 - Internet availability of reports to shareholders.
(a) General. A Fund may satisfy its obligation to transmit a report required by § 270.30e-1 (“Report”) to a shareholder of record if all of the conditions set forth in paragraphs (b) through (e) of this section are satisfied.
(b) Availability of report to shareholders and other materials.
(1) The following materials are publicly accessible, free of charge, at the website address specified in the Notice from the date the Fund transmits the Report as required by § 270.30e-1 until the Fund next transmits a report required by § 270.30e-1 with respect to the Fund:
(i) Current report to shareholders. The Report.
(iii) Complete portfolio holdings from reports containing a summary schedule of investments. If a report specified in paragraph (b)(1)(i) or (ii) of this section includes a summary schedule of investments (§ 210.12-12B of this chapter) in lieu of Schedule I - Investments in securities of unaffiliated issuers (§ 210.12-12 of this chapter), the Fund's complete portfolio holdings as of the close of the period covered by the report, presented in accordance with the schedules set forth in §§ 210.12-12 through 210.12-14 of Regulation S-X (§§ 210.12-12 through 210.12-14 of this chapter), which need not be audited.
(iv) Portfolio holdings for most recent first and third fiscal quarters. The Fund's complete portfolio holdings as of the close of the Fund's most recent first and third fiscal quarters, if any, after the date on which the Fund's registration statement became effective, presented in accordance with the schedules set forth in §§ 210.12-12 through 210.12-14 of Regulation S-X [§§ 210.12-12 through 210.12-14 of this chapter], which need not be audited. The complete portfolio holdings required by this paragraph (b)(1)(iv) must be made publicly available not later than 60 days after the close of the fiscal quarter.
(3) The materials that are accessible in accordance with paragraph (b)(1) of this section must be presented on the website in a format, or formats, that are convenient for both reading online and printing on paper.
(4) Persons accessing the materials specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section must be able to retain permanently, free of charge, an electronic version of such materials in a format, or formats, that meet the conditions of paragraph (b)(3) of this section.
(5) The conditions set forth in paragraphs (b)(1) through (4) of this section shall be deemed to be met, notwithstanding the fact that the materials specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section are not available for a time in the manner required by paragraphs (b)(1) through (4) of this section, provided that:
(ii) The Fund takes prompt action to ensure that the specified documents become available in the manner required by paragraphs (b)(1) through (4) of this section, as soon as practicable following the earlier of the time at which it knows or reasonably should have known that the documents are not available in the manner required by paragraphs (b)(1) through (4) of this section.
(c) Notice. A paper notice (“Notice”) meeting the conditions of this paragraph (c) must be sent to the shareholder within 70 days after the close of the period for which the Report is being made. The Notice may contain only the information specified by paragraphs (c)(1), (2), and (3) of this section, and may include pictures, logos, or similar design elements so long as the design is not misleading and the information is clear.
(i) Contain a prominent legend in bold-face type that states “[An] Important Report[s] to [Shareholders] of [Fund] [is/are] Now Available Online and In Print by Request.” The Notice may also include information identifying the Fund, the Fund's sponsor (including any investment adviser or sub-adviser to the Fund), a variable annuity or variable life insurance contract or insurance company issuer thereof, or a financial intermediary through which shares of the Fund are held.
(ii) State that the Report contains important information about the Fund, including its portfolio holdings and financial statements. The statement may also include a brief listing of other types of information contained in the Report.
(iii) State that the Report is available at the website address specified in the Notice or, upon request, by mail, and encourage the shareholder to access and review the Report.
(iv) Include a website address where the Report and other materials specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section are available. The website address must be specific enough to lead investors directly to the documents that are required to be accessible under paragraph (b)(1) of this section, rather than to the home page or a section of the website other than on which the documents are posted. The website may be a central site with prominent links to each document. In addition to the website address, the Notice may contain any other equivalent method or means to access the Report or other materials specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section.
(v) Provide a toll-free (or collect) telephone number to contact the Fund or the shareholder's financial intermediary, and:
(A) Provide instructions describing how a shareholder may request a paper or email copy of the Report and other materials specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section at no charge, and an indication that the shareholder will not otherwise receive a paper or email copy;
(B) Explain that the shareholder can at any time elect to receive print reports in the future and provide instructions describing how a shareholder may make that election (e.g., by contacting the Fund or by contacting the shareholder's financial intermediary); and
(C) If applicable, provide instructions describing how a shareholder can elect to receive shareholder reports or other documents and communications by electronic delivery.
(2) The Notice may include additional methods by which a shareholder can contact the Fund or the shareholder's financial intermediary (e.g., by email or through a website), which may include any information needed to identify the shareholder.
(4) The Notice may not be incorporated into, or combined with, another document, except that the Notice may incorporate or combine one or more other Notices.
(5) The Notice must be sent separately from other types of shareholder communications and may not accompany any other document or materials; provided, however, that the Notice may accompany:
(i) One or more other Notices;
(iii) In the case of a Fund held in a separate account funding a variable annuity or variable life insurance contract, such contract or the Statutory Prospectus and Statement of Additional Information for such contract; or
(iv) The shareholder's account statement.
(6) A Notice required by this paragraph (c) will be considered transmitted to a shareholder of record if the conditions set forth in § 270.30e-1(f), § 240.14a-3(e), or § 240.14c-3(c) of this chapter are satisfied with respect to that shareholder.
(d) Plain English requirements.
(1) To enhance the readability of the Notice, plain English principles must be used in the organization, language, and design of the Notice.
(2) The Notice must be drafted so that, at a minimum, it substantially complies with each of the following plain English writing principles:
(i) Short sentences;
(ii) Definite, concrete, everyday words;
(iii) Active voice;
(iv) Tabular presentation or bullet lists for complex material, whenever possible;
(v) No legal jargon or highly technical business terms; and
(vi) No multiple negatives.
(e) Delivery of paper copy upon request. A paper copy of any of the materials specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section must be transmitted to any person requesting such a copy, at no cost to the requestor and by U.S. first class mail or other reasonably prompt means, within three business days after a request for a paper copy is received.
(f) Investor elections to receive future reports in paper.
(1) This section may not be relied upon to transmit a Report to a shareholder if the shareholder has notified the Fund (or the shareholder's financial intermediary) that the shareholder wishes to receive paper copies of shareholder reports at any time after the Fund has first notified the shareholder of its intent to rely on the rule or provided a Notice to the shareholder.
(2) A shareholder who has notified the Fund (or the shareholder's financial intermediary) that the shareholder wishes to receive paper copies of shareholder reports with respect to a Fund will be deemed to have requested paper copies of shareholder reports with respect to:
(i) Any and all current and future Funds held through an account or accounts with:
(B) A financial intermediary; and
(ii) Any and all Funds held currently and in the future in a separate account funding a variable annuity or variable life insurance contract.
(g) Delivery of other documents. This section may not be relied upon to transmit a copy of a Fund's currently effective Statutory Prospectus or Statement of Additional Information, or both, under the Securities Act of 1933 (15 U.S.C. 77a et seq.) as otherwise permitted by paragraph (d) of § 270.30e-1.
(h) Definitions. For purposes of this section:
(1) Fund means a management company registered on Form N-2 (§§ 239.14 and 274.11a of this chapter) or Form N-3 (§§ 239.17a and 274.11b of this chapter) and any separate series of the management company that is required to transmit a report to shareholders pursuant to 270.30e-1.
(2) Statement of Additional Information means the statement of additional information required by Part B of the applicable registration form.
For a discussion of how the conditions and requirements of this rule may apply in the context of investors holding Fund shares through financial intermediaries, see Investment Company Release No. 33115 (June 5, 2018).