364, s. 53
553.51 (title) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.51 (title) Civil liability; offer or sale in violation.
364, s. 54
553.51 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.51 (1) Any person who offers, purchases or sells a franchise in violation of s. 553.21 or 553.41 (1), (2), (4) or (5) 553.27 (4), if the violation was material in the franchisee's or subfranchisor's decision to purchase the franchise, shall be liable to the franchisee or subfranchisor, who may bring an action for rescission, unless, in the case of a violation of s. 553.41 (1), (2), (4) or (5), the defendant proves that the plaintiff knew the facts concerning the untruth or omission, or that the defendant exercised reasonable care and did not know, or, if the defendant had exercised reasonable care, would not have known, of the untruth or omission.
364, s. 55
553.51 (2) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.51 (2) Any person who violates s. 553.41 (3) shall be, (4) or (5) is liable for damages to any person who does not knowing know or having have cause to believe that such the statement or representation was false or misleading and who, while relying upon such the statement, shall have sold or representation, purchased a franchise, for damages, unless the defendant proves that the plaintiff knew the facts concerning the untruth or omission or that the defendant exercised reasonable care and did not know, or if the defendant had exercised reasonable care would not have known, of the untruth or omission.
553.51 (4) No action may be maintained against any person to enforce any liability under this section unless it is brought before the expiration of 3 years after the act or transaction constituting the violation upon which the liability is based or 90 days after delivery to the franchisee of a written notice disclosing from or on behalf of that person that discloses any violation of s. 553.21 or 553.41, which notice shall be approved as to form by this chapter and that is filed with the division, whichever first expires.
364, s. 57
553.52 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.52 (1) Any person who wilfully violates any provision of this chapter except s. 553.41 (1), or any rule under this chapter, (2) to (5) or any order of which the person has notice, or who violates s. 553.41 (1) knowing or having reasonable cause to believe either that the statement made was false or misleading in any material respect or that the failure to report a material event under s. 553.31 (1) was false or misleading in any material respect, may be fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned for not more than 5 years or both. Each of the acts specified shall constitute is a separate offense, and a prosecution or conviction for any one of those offenses shall does not bar prosecution or conviction for any other offense.
364, s. 58
553.52 (2) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.52 (2) Any person who employs, directly or indirectly, any device, scheme or artifice to defraud in connection with the offer or sale of any franchise or engages, directly or indirectly, in any act, practice, or course of business which operates or would operate as a fraud or deceit upon any person in connection with the offer, purchase or sale of any franchise shall be fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both.
364, s. 59m
553.54 (2) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.54 (2) (a) The court may, prior to the entry of final judgment, issue such orders or judgments as are necessary to restore to any person any pecuniary loss suffered because of the acts or practices involved in the action if proof of the pecuniary loss is submitted to the satisfaction of the court. Orders or judgments under this paragraph shall not provide restoration of any pecuniary loss to persons for whom recovery is sought where the defendant in the action establishes that the persons were in possession of knowledge which would defeat recovery by them in a private civil action under s. 553.51 (1) or (2). Persons liable for pecuniary losses under this paragraph are the same as provided under s. 553.51 (3).
553.56 (1) Except as provided by sub. (2), no order may be entered by the division under s. 553.24, or 553.28 or 553.53 (2) without appropriate prior notice to all interested parties, opportunity for hearing and written findings of fact and conclusions of law.
553.58 (1) The division may make, amend and rescind any rules, forms and orders that are necessary to carry out this chapter, including rules and forms governing registration statements, applications registrations and reports, defining any terms, whether or not used in this chapter, insofar as the definitions are not inconsistent with this chapter. The division may define by rule false, fraudulent or deceptive practices in the offer and sale of franchises. The division may also adopt rules with regard to advertising utilized in connection with exempt sales under s. 553.22, 553.23 or 553.235 and which need not be filed under s. 553.53. For the purpose of rules and forms, the division may classify franchises, persons and matters within the division's jurisdiction, and may prescribe different requirements for different classes. Rules shall be made and published and all administrative procedures, including hearings under s. 553.56 and issuance of orders, shall be in accordance with ch. 227.
364, s. 63
553.59 of the statutes is amended to read:
553.59 Scope of chapter. (1) The provisions of this chapter concerning sales and offers to sell apply when a sale is made in this state or when an offer to sell is made in this state or when an offer to purchase is made and accepted in this state. The provisions concerning purchases and offers to purchase apply when a purchase or offer to purchase is made in this state or an offer to sell is made and or accepted in this state, except that s. 553.21 does not apply to an offer to sell that is not directed to, or received by, the offeree in this state.
(2) For the purpose of this section, an offer to sell or to purchase is made in this state, whether or not either party is then present in this state, when if the offer either originates from in this state or is directed by the offeror to this state and received by the offeree in this state, but for the purpose of s. 553.21, an offer to sell which is not directed to or received by the offeree in this state is not made in this state.
(3) For the purpose of this section, an offer to
purchase or to sell is accepted in this state when
if acceptance is communicated to the offeror in from this state, and has not previously been communicated to the offeror, orally or in writing, outside this state; and acceptance is communicated to the offeror in this state, whether or not either party is then present in this state, when the offeree directs it to the offeror in this state reasonably believing the offeror to be in this state and it is received by the offeror in this state.
(4) An offer to sell or to purchase is not made in this state when if the publisher circulates or there is circulated on the publisher's behalf in this state any bona fide newspaper or other publication of general, regular and paid circulation which that is not published in this state, or if a radio or television program originating that originates outside this state is received in this state.
553.60 Miscellaneous powers. The division may by order summarily prohibit offers or sales of a franchise subject to s. 553.21 (1) which that are being, or have been, made in this state in violation of this chapter, unless the offer or sale of the franchise is registered or exempted from registration under this chapter.
553.605 (1) (a) (intro.) The division or any officer designated by the division may impose an administrative assessment in the amount provided in par. (b) on any person who is subject to an order that is issued under s. 553.24, 553.28, 553.53, 553.58 (1) and (2) or 553.60 in any of the following circumstances:
364, s. 66
553.72 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
553.72 (1) The fee for filing an application for a notice for the one-year effectiveness of the registration of the offer of franchises a franchise under s. 553.26 is $400.
553.74 (title) Open records; publication. All applications, reports notifications and other papers and documents filed with the division under this chapter shall be open to public inspection in accordance with rules adopted by the division. The division may publish any information filed with or obtained by the division, if, in the judgment of the division, such action is in the public interest. No provision of this chapter authorizes the division or any of the division's employes to disclose any information withheld from public inspection except among themselves or when necessary or appropriate in a proceeding or investigation under this chapter or to other federal or state regulatory agencies. No provision of this chapter either creates or derogates from any privilege which exists at common law or otherwise when documentary or other evidence is sought under a subpoena directed to the division or any of the division's employes.
364, s. 69
553.74 (2) of the statutes is repealed.
553.75 (3) The information contained in or filed with any registration statement, application or report
notification shall be made available to the public in accordance with rules adopted by the division.
364, s. 71
553.76 (1) of the statutes is renumbered 553.76 and amended to read:
553.76 (title) Waivers of compliance void. Except as provided in sub. (2), any Any condition, stipulation or provision purporting to bind any person acquiring any franchise to waive compliance with any provision of this chapter or any rule or order hereunder under this chapter is void. This section does not affect the settlement of disputes, claims or civil lawsuits arising or brought under this chapter.
364, s. 72
553.76 (2) of the statutes is repealed.
(1) Transition. A franchisor who has an effective registration or exemption on July 1, 1996, is considered to have filed the notification under section 553.26 of the statutes, as affected by this act, on the most recent effective date of that registration or exemption. That registration or exemption is valid for one year after its most recent effective date.
(1) This act takes effect on July 1, 1996.