Corporations Are Not Persons
On Oct. 2nd, 2012, Jonathan "The Carpool Guy" Frieman was driving in Marin County's carpool lane with legal documents that had incorporated his nonprofit corporation, the JoMiJo Foundation, when he was pulled over by California Highway Patrol and issued a citation for violating California's High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV), aka carpool regulations. While Frieman was the only human passenger in the car, California's High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV), aka carpool regulations, mandate that "2 or more persons per vehicle" is the requirement for driving in the carpool lane during permitted hours. At the time of the citation on the morning of October 2nd, Mr. Frieman informed the state trooper that he was not in violation of California State Vehicle Code because the nonprofit incorporation papers on the seat next to him (represented by its articles of incorporation) qualified as a "person" under state law. Nonetheless, the state trooper cited Mr. Frieman and instructed him to take it up with the court.