Rule 504 of Regulation D exempts from registration the offer and sale of up to $5 million of securities in a 12-month period. A company is required to file a notice with the SEC on Form D within 15 days after the first sale of securities in the offering. In addition, a company must comply with state securities laws and regulations in the states in which securities are offered or sold.
The following companies are not eligible to use Rule 504: Exchange Act reporting companies; investment companies; companies that have no specific business plan or have indicated their business plan is to engage in a merger or acquisition with an unidentified company or companies; and companies that are disqualified under Rule 504’s “bad actor” disqualification provisions.”
Rule 504 Offering Documents
Our SEC compliant Rule 504 Offering Kits include the PPM, Investor Questionnaire, Subscription Agreement, Form D (which we file for you for free), Jurisdictional Legends for all 50 states, Patriot Act Disclosures and more plus our kits are available for your corporation or your LLC for both equity or debt offerings.
- Do the anti-fraud provisions apply?
All securities transactions, even exempt transactions, are subject to the antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws. This means that you and your company will be responsible for false or misleading statements that you or others on your behalf make regarding your company, the securities offered, or the offering. You and your company are responsible for any such statements, whether made by your company or on behalf of the company, and regardless of whether they are made orally or in writing.
The government enforces the federal securities laws through criminal, civil and administrative proceedings. Private parties also can bring actions under certain securities laws. Also, if all conditions of the exemptions are not met, purchasers may be able to return their securities and obtain a refund of their purchase price.
- Do state law requirements apply?
While the SEC regulates and enforces the federal securities laws, each state has its own securities regulator who enforces what are known as “blue sky” laws. If a company is selling securities, it must comply with both federal regulations and state securities laws and regulations in the states where securities are offered and sold (typically, the states where offerees and investors are based).
Under the Securities Act, if a company’s offering qualifies for certain exemptions from registration, that offering is not required to be registered or qualified by state securities regulators. Even if the offering is made under one of those exemptions, the states still have authority to investigate and bring enforcement actions for fraud, impose state notice filing requirements, and collect state fees. The failure to file, or pay filing fees regarding, any such materials may cause state securities regulators to suspend the offer or sale of securities within their jurisdiction. Companies should contact state securities regulators in the states in which they intend to offer or sell securities for further guidance on compliance with state law requirements. The following table illustrates which offerings are potentially subject to state registration or qualification under the Securities Act.
|Securities Act Exemption||Under the Securities Act, is the offering potentially subject to state registration or qualification?|
|Regulation A – Tier 1||Yes|
|Regulation A – Tier 2||No|
|Rules 147 and 147A||Yes|
For the offerings that are potentially subject to state registration or qualification, each state’s securities laws have their own separate registration requirements and exemptions to registration requirements. Even if the offering is not subject to state registration or qualification, there may still be state notice filing requirements and fees.
To locate a state securities regulator and learn more about a particular state’s securities laws, please visit the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) website.
- What are restricted securities?
“Restricted securities” are previously-issued securities held by security holders that are not freely tradable. Securities Act Rule 144(a)(3) identifies what offerings produce restricted securities. After such a transaction, the security holders can only resell the securities into the market by using an effective registration statement under the Securities Act or a valid exemption from registration for the resale, such as Rule 144.
Rule 144 is a “safe harbor” under Section 4(a)(1) providing objective standards that a security holder can rely on to meet the requirements of that exemption. Rule 144 permits the resale of restricted securities if a number of conditions are met, including holding the securities for six months or one year, depending on whether the issuer has been filing reports under the Exchange Act. Rule 144 may limit the amount of securities that can be sold at one time and may restrict the manner of sale, depending on whether the security holder is an affiliate. An affiliate of a company is a person that, directly, or indirectly through one or more intermediaries controls, or is controlled by, or is under common control with, the company.
- How can an investor resell non-restricted securities?
An investor that is not affiliated with the issuer and wishes to sell securities that are not restricted must either register the transaction or have an exemption for the transaction. An exemption commonly relied upon for the resale of the securities is Section 4(a)(1) of the Securities Act which is available to any person other than an issuer, underwriter or dealer. Please be aware that several exemptions, including the exemptions under Regulation D, are only available for offers and sales by an issuer of securities to initial purchasers and are not available to any affiliate of the issuer or to any person for resales of the securities.
|Our SEC compliant documents and other services are not a substitute for the advice of legal counsel.|