When used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following respective meanings:
(1) “Affiliate” means a person that directly, or indirectly through one or more intermediaries, controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with an applicant or registrant.
(2) “Associated person” means: (a) With respect to a dealer or investment adviser, any of the following:
1. Any partner, officer, director, or branch manager of a dealer or investment adviser or any person occupying a similar status or performing similar functions;
2. Any natural person directly or indirectly controlling or controlled by such dealer or investment adviser, other than an employee whose function is only clerical or ministerial; or
3. Any natural person, other than a dealer, employed, appointed, or authorized by a dealer, investment adviser, or issuer to sell securities in any manner or act as an investment adviser as defined in this section.
The partners of a partnership and the executive officers of a corporation or other association registered as a dealer, and any person whose transactions in this state are limited to those transactions described in s. 15(h)(2) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, are not “associated persons” within the meaning of this definition.
(b) With respect to a federal covered adviser, any person who is an investment adviser representative and who has a place of business in this state, as such terms are defined in Rule 203A-3 of the Securities and Exchange Commission adopted under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.
(3) “Boiler room” means an enterprise in which two or more persons engage in telephone communications with members of the public using two or more telephones at one location, or at more than one location in a common scheme or enterprise.
(4) “Branch office” means any location in this state of a dealer or investment adviser at which one or more associated persons regularly conduct the business of rendering investment advice or effecting any transactions in, or inducing or attempting to induce the purchase or sale of, any security or any location that is held out as such. The commission may adopt by rule exceptions to this definition for dealers in order to maintain consistency with the definition of a branch office used by self-regulatory organizations authorized by the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. The commission may adopt by rule exceptions to this definition for investment advisers.
(5) “Control,” including the terms “controlling,” “controlled by,” and “under common control with,” means the possession, directly or indirectly, of the power to direct or cause the direction of the management or policies of a person, whether through the ownership of voting securities, by contract, or otherwise.
(6)(a) “Dealer” includes any of the following:
1. Any person, other than an associated person registered under this chapter, who engages, either for all or part of her or his time, directly or indirectly, as broker or principal in the business of offering, buying, selling, or otherwise dealing or trading in securities issued by another person.
2. Any issuer who through persons directly compensated or controlled by the issuer engages, either for all or part of her or his time, directly or indirectly, in the business of offering or selling securities which are issued or are proposed to be issued by the issuer.
(b) The term “dealer” does not include the following:
1. Any licensed practicing attorney who renders or performs any of such services in connection with the regular practice of her or his profession;
2. Any bank authorized to do business in this state, except nonbank subsidiaries of a bank;
3. Any trust company having trust powers which it is authorized to exercise in this state, which renders or performs services in a fiduciary capacity incidental to the exercise of its trust powers;
4. Any wholesaler selling exclusively to dealers;
5. Any person buying and selling for her or his own account exclusively through a registered dealer or stock exchange; or
6. Pursuant to s. 517.061(11), any person associated with an issuer of securities if such person is a bona fide employee of the issuer who has not participated in the distribution or sale of any securities within the preceding 12 months and who primarily performs, or is intended to perform at the end of the distribution, substantial duties for, or on behalf of, the issuer other than in connection with transactions in securities.
(7) “Commission” means the Financial Services Commission.
(8) “Office” means the Office of Financial Regulation of the commission.
(9) “Federal covered adviser” means a person who is registered or required to be registered under s. 203 of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. The term “federal covered adviser” does not include any person who is excluded from the definition of investment adviser under subparagraphs (14)(b)1.-8.
(10) “Federal covered security” means any security that is a covered security under s. 18(b) of the Securities Act of 1933 or rules and regulations adopted thereunder.
(11) “Guarantor” means a person who agrees in writing, or who holds itself out to the public as agreeing, to pay the indebtedness of another when due, including, without limitation, payments of principal and interest on a bond, debenture, note, or other evidence of indebtedness, without resort by the holder to any other obligor, whether or not such writing expressly states that the person signing is signing as a guarantor. The obligation of a guarantor hereunder shall be a continuing, absolute, and unconditional guaranty of payment, without regard to the validity, regularity, or enforceability of the underlying indebtedness.
(12) “Guaranty” means a writing in which one party either agrees, or holds itself out to the public as agreeing, to pay the indebtedness of another when due, including, without limitation, payments of principal and interest on a bond, debenture, note, or other evidence of indebtedness, without resort by the holder to any other obligor, whether or not such writing expressly states that the person signing is signing as a guarantor. An agreement that is not specifically denominated as a guaranty shall nevertheless constitute a guaranty if the holder of the underlying indebtedness or her or his representative or trustee has the right to sue to enforce the guarantor’s obligations under the guaranty. Words of guaranty or equivalent words which otherwise do not specify guaranty of payment create a presumption that payment, rather than collection, is guaranteed by the guarantor. Any guaranty in writing is enforceable notwithstanding any statute of frauds.
(13) “Intermediary” means a natural person residing in the state or a corporation, trust, partnership, association, or other legal entity registered with the Secretary of State to do business in the state, which facilitates the offer or sale of securities under s. 517.0611.
(14)(a) “Investment adviser” includes any person who receives compensation, directly or indirectly, and engages for all or part of her or his time, directly or indirectly, or through publications or writings, in the business of advising others as to the value of securities or as to the advisability of investments in, purchasing of, or selling of securities, except a dealer whose performance of these services is solely incidental to the conduct of her or his business as a dealer and who receives no special compensation for such services.
(b) The term “investment adviser” does not include the following:
1. Any licensed practicing attorney whose performance of such services is solely incidental to the practice of her or his profession;
2. Any licensed certified public accountant whose performance of such services is solely incidental to the practice of her or his profession;
3. Any bank authorized to do business in this state;
4. Any bank holding company as defined in the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, as amended, authorized to do business in this state;
5. Any trust company having trust powers which it is authorized to exercise in the state, which trust company renders or performs services in a fiduciary capacity incidental to the exercise of its trust powers;
6. Any person who renders investment advice exclusively to insurance or investment companies;
7. Any person who does not hold herself or himself out to the general public as an investment adviser and has no more than 15 clients within 12 consecutive months in this state;
8. Any person whose transactions in this state are limited to those transactions described in s. 222(d) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. Those clients listed in subparagraph 6. may not be included when determining the number of clients of an investment adviser for purposes of s. 222(d) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940; or
9. A federal covered adviser.
(15) “Issuer” means any person who proposes to issue, has issued, or shall hereafter issue any security. Any person who acts as a promoter for and on behalf of a corporation, trust, or unincorporated association or partnership of any kind to be formed shall be deemed an issuer.
(16) “Offer to sell,” “offer for sale,” or “offer” means any attempt or offer to dispose of, or solicitation of an offer to buy, a security or interest in a security, or an investment or interest in an investment, for value.
(17) “Predecessor” means a person the major portion of whose assets have been acquired directly or indirectly by an issuer.
(18) “Principal” means an executive officer of a corporation, partner of a partnership, sole proprietor of a sole proprietorship, trustee of a trust, or any other person with similar supervisory functions with respect to any organization, whether incorporated or unincorporated.
(19) “Promoter” includes the following:
(a) Any person who, acting alone or in conjunction with one or more other persons, directly or indirectly takes the initiative in founding and organizing the business or enterprise of an issuer.
(b) Any person who, in connection with the founding or organizing of the business or enterprise of an issuer, directly or indirectly receives in consideration of services or property, or both services and property, 10 percent or more of any class of securities of the issuer or 10 percent or more of the proceeds from the sale of any class of securities. However, a person who receives such securities or proceeds either solely as underwriting commissions or solely in connection with property shall not be deemed a promoter if such person does not otherwise take part in founding and organizing the enterprise.
(20) “Qualified institutional buyer” means any qualified institutional buyer, as defined in United States Securities and Exchange Commission Rule 144A, 17 C.F.R. s. 230.144A(a), under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or any foreign buyer that satisfies the minimum financial requirements set forth in such rule.
(21) “Sale” or “sell” means any contract of sale or disposition of any investment, security, or interest in a security, for value. With respect to a security or interest in a security, the term defined in this subsection does not include preliminary negotiations or agreements between an issuer or any person on whose behalf an offering is to be made and any underwriter or among underwriters who are or are to be in privity of contract with an issuer. Any security given or delivered with, or as a bonus on account of, any purchase of securities or any other thing shall be conclusively presumed to constitute a part of the subject of such purchase and to have been offered and sold for value. Every sale or offer of a warrant or right to purchase or subscribe to another security of the same or another issuer, as well as every sale or offer of a security which gives the holder a present or future right or privilege to convert into another security or another issuer, is considered to include an offer of the other security.
(22) “Security” includes any of the following:
(a) A note.
(b) A stock.
(c) A treasury stock.
(d) A bond.
(e) A debenture.
(f) An evidence of indebtedness.
(g) A certificate of deposit.
(h) A certificate of deposit for a security.
(i) A certificate of interest or participation.
(j) A whiskey warehouse receipt or other commodity warehouse receipt.
(k) A certificate of interest in a profit-sharing agreement or the right to participate therein.
(l) A certificate of interest in an oil, gas, petroleum, mineral, or mining title or lease or the right to participate therein.
(m) A collateral trust certificate.
(n) A reorganization certificate.
(o) A preorganization subscription.
(p) Any transferable share.
(q) An investment contract.
(r) A beneficial interest in title to property, profits, or earnings.
(s) An interest in or under a profit-sharing or participation agreement or scheme.
(t) Any option contract which entitles the holder to purchase or sell a given amount of the underlying security at a fixed price within a specified period of time.
(u) Any other instrument commonly known as a security, including an interim or temporary bond, debenture, note, or certificate.
(v) Any receipt for a security, or for subscription to a security, or any right to subscribe to or purchase any security.
(w) A viatical settlement investment.
(23) “Underwriter” means a person who has purchased from an issuer or an affiliate of an issuer with a view to, or offers or sells for an issuer or an affiliate of an issuer in connection with, the distribution of any security, or participates or has a direct or indirect participation in any such undertaking, or participates or has a participation in the direct or indirect underwriting of any such undertaking; except that a person shall be presumed not to be an underwriter with respect to any security which she or he has owned beneficially for at least 1 year; and, further, a dealer shall not be considered an underwriter with respect to any securities which do not represent part of an unsold allotment to or subscription by the dealer as a participant in the distribution of such securities by the issuer or an affiliate of the issuer; and, further, in the case of securities acquired on the conversion of another security without payment of additional consideration, the length of time such securities have been beneficially owned by a person includes the period during which the convertible security was beneficially owned and the period during which the security acquired on conversion has been beneficially owned.
(24) “Viatical settlement investment” means an agreement for the purchase, sale, assignment, transfer, devise, or bequest of all or any portion of a legal or equitable interest in a viaticated policy as defined in chapter 626.