Improving Legal Documents in Crowdfunding: Get Rid of the State Legends!

By Mark Roderick CrowdFunding Beat  Sr. contributing editor and crowdfunding attorney with Flaster/Greenberg PC.

I see lots of offering documents like this, with pages of state “legends.” The good news is that in Crowdfunding offerings – Title II (Rule 506(c)), Title III (Regulation Crowdfunding), and Title IV (Regulation A) – you can and should get rid of them.

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAcrAAAAJGNjZDJhM2MyLTRmNWItNDEyYS05NzBjLTkzMzQ3NjViZWViNw (1)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The legal case is pretty simple:

  • Before 1996, states were allowed to regulate private offerings. Every state allowed exemptions, but these exemptions often required legends, differing from state to state.
  • The National Securities Market Improvement Act of 1996 added section 18 to the Securities Act of 1933. Section 18 provides that no state shall “impose any conditions upon the use of. . . .any offering document that is prepared by or on behalf of the issuer. . . .” in connection with the sale of “covered securities.”
  • The securities sold under Title II, Title III, and Title IV are all “covered securities.”
  • Hence, section 18 prohibits states from imposing any conditions regarding the issuer’s offering documents, including a condition that requires the use of a state legend.

If the capitalized legends just take up space, why not include them anyway just to be safe? Take Pennsylvania’s legend as an example:

These securities have not been registered under the Pennsylvania Securities Act of 1972 in reliance upon an exemption therefrom. any sale made pursuant to such exemption is voidable by a Pennsylvania purchaser within two business days from the date of receipt by the issuer of his or her written binding contract of purchase or, in the case of a transaction in which there is not a written binding contract of purchase, within two business days after he or she makes the initial payment for the shares being offered.

If you include the Pennsylvania legend “just to be safe,” you’ve given Pennsylvania investors a right of rescission they wouldn’t have had otherwise!

Two qualifications.

First, the North American Securities Administrators Association –the trade group of state securities regulators – suggests including uniform legend on offering documents. I include this or something similar as a matter of course:

IN MAKING AN INVESTMENT DECISION INVESTORS MUST RELY ON THEIR OWN EXAMINATION OF THE COMPANY AND THE TERMS OF THE OFFERING, INCLUDING THE MERITS AND RISKS INVOLVED. THESE SECURITIES HAVE NOT BEEN RECOMMENDED BY ANY FEDERAL OR STATE SECURITIES COMMISSION OR REGULATORY AUTHORITY. FURTHERMORE, THE FOREGOING AUTHORITIES HAVE NOT CONFIRMED THE ACCURACY OR DETERMINED THE ADEQUACY OF THIS DOCUMENT. ANY REPRESENTATION TO THE CONTRARY IS A CRIMINAL OFFENSE. THESE SECURITIES ARE SUBJECT TO RESTRICTIONS ON TRANSFERABILITY AND RESALE AND MAY NOT BE TRANSFERRED OR RESOLD EXCEPT AS PERMITTED UNDER THE ACT, AND THE APPLICABLE STATE SECURITIES LAWS, PURSUANT TO REGISTRATION OR EXEMPTION THEREFROM. INVESTORS SHOULD BE AWARE THAT THEY WILL BE REQUIRED TO BEAR THE FINANCIAL RISKS OF THIS INVESTMENT FOR AN INDEFINITE PERIOD OF TIME.

Second, some states, including Florida, require a legend to appear on the face of the offering document to avoid broker-dealer registration. Because Section 18 of the Securities Act doesn’t prohibit states from regulating broker-dealers, some lawyers recommend including those legends, while others believe those requirements are an improper “back door” way for states to avoid the Federal rule. I come out in the latter camp, but opinions differ.

261

Markley S. Roderick concentrates his practice on the representation of entrepreneurs and their businesses. He represents companies across a wide range of industries, including technology, real estate, and healthcare.

 

 

 

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

HEADLINE NEWS

Crowdfunding platform Patreon defends itself from protests by 'intellectual dark web,' publishes slur-filled posts from banned YouTuber  Business InsiderCrowdfunding website Patreon published a transcript from a YouTube conversation with banned member Carl Benjamin showing h [...]

Fox News Guest Says Trump Voters Should Pay for Border Wall by Crowdfunding It  Newsweek"If the 63 million people who voted for Donald Trump each contributed $80, that would get you near the $5 billion mark." [...]

Should you give to crowdfunding campaigns?  Jackson Clarion LedgerCrowdfunding allows you to help someone directly, but there are also disadvantages, including the potential for fraud. [...]

12 Days of Bizmas: Christmas is a time for receiving... from crowdfunding  BQ LiveJohn Auckland, from crowdfunding communications agency, TribeFirst shares the 5 reasons he believes Christmas is a great time for crowdfunding. [...]

On Reddit, vigilante detectives are uncovering crowdfunding scams  Wired.co.ukThe final line of defence against dodgy crowdfunding campaigns could be 90000 Redditors. [...]

Proof of use: A new crowdfunding threshold for passionate users  TechCrunchRight now, most participants in U.S. private placements must be “accredited” investors, meaning $200,000 annual income over multiple years or $1 million in net ... [...]

Vialli's crowdfunding platform creating 'bond' between clubs and fans  Yahoo NewsFormer Italy international Gianluca Vialli and business partner Fausto Zanetton believe their innovative crowdfunding platform Tifosy can help arrest the growing ... [...]

Be cautious with crowdfunding  The Week MagazineHere are three of the week's top pieces of financial advice, gathered from around the web: Be cautious with crowdfunding. It's wise to be careful when donating ... [...]

Crowdfunding campaign raises £16,000 to fund aspiring NHS physiotherapist’s studies  The IndependentAn aspiring NHS physiotherapist who sometimes slept just one hour a night in order to fund his education spoke of his joy and gratitude after a crowdfunding ... [...]

The history of crowdfunding  Independent OnlineIn the third series on crowdfunding we look at its history. [...]

CFB Finance

Marketwired

  • Crowdfunding
  • Crowdfund
  • Peer to Peer Lending
  • FinTech
  • Reg A+
  • Reg CF
  • Crowdfunding USA

Press Release

Fintech World Beat

2020fintech.com' title='https://2020fintech.com/' target="_blank" class='rtw_url_link'>2020fintech.com 2019 Blockchain Mastermind Series 2020fintech.com' title='https://2020fintech.com/' target="_blank" class='rtw_url_link'>2020fintech.com #blockchain #digital #realestate #fintech ulation pic.twitter.com/wJC04nwJyl

Live Crowdfunding .tv

What's Next Step in Regulation A+ JOBS ACTS Title IIII :L Interview : Steve Cinelli with Brian Korn Securities and Crowdfunding/Peer-to-Peer Lending Lawyer, Watch more video library | Conference | Interview | Campaign Showcase | Research | Education |