About the Securities Department Securities

The Illinois Securities Department regulates the offer and sale of securities pursuant to the Illinois Securities Law of 1953. The department registers securities offerings, broker-dealers, investment advisers and their sales-persons and representatives, loan brokers, business brokers and those who offer and sell business opportunities. A registration option available to entrepreneurs is the Small Company Offering Registration process. This program assists small businesses in raising capital in the equity markets, while minimizing the registration process and simultaneously providing full disclosure of risks to potential investors.

The Central Registration Depository (CRD) and Investment Adviser Registration Depository (IARD) allow electronic filings by broker-dealers and investment advisers. Both depositories provide for more efficient registration and enhanced investor protection by allowing regulators to view the disciplinary history of registrants.

The Securities Department is an administrative agency. Enforcement investigators and attorneys investigate complaints from investors and issue subpoenas and administrative orders in cases where the law is violated. Enforcement staff also refers cases to criminal authorities and assists in the investigation and prosecution of investment fraud. The department’s special agents have the authority to seek seizure and forfeiture of assets through the Attorney General’s office. Where assets are forfeited, civil actions are filed to return funds to defrauded investors. The department has participated in the prosecution of several criminal cases resulting in significant jail terms for the perpetrators. The department also has assisted many investors by pursuing brokers who engaged in misrepresentation and the sale of unsuitable products.

The department’s audit staff conducts both routine and unannounced audits of broker-dealers and investment advisers. Audits that uncover fraud are referred to the enforcement staff, and deficiencies requiring corrective actions are noted in letters to the audited entities.

The Securities Department is active in investor education and financial literacy programs, conducting seminars for investors and providing financial literacy teaching guides to Illinois schools.

The department is deemed a criminal justice agency for purposes of all federal and state laws and regulations. The department is a government agency and does not charge for its services.

Laws and Regulations

The Securities Department is responsible for administering and enforcing the provisions of the following laws and rules:

The Secretary of State, Illinois Securities Department or their information providers shall not be liable regardless of the cause or duration, for any errors, inaccuracies, omissions or untimeliness of the information, or for any delay or interruption in the transmission thereof to the user, or for any claims or losses arising therefrom.