Securities and franchises must be registered through the State Corporation Commission, Division of Securities and Retail Franchising or exempted before business is transacted in the Commonwealth of Virginia. We investigate complaints regarding the sale of investment products and franchises and the practices of investment advisors and broker dealers in Virginia.

Sections §13.1-518 of the Virginia Securities Act and §13.1-567 of the Virginia Retail Franchising Act authorize the Commission to conduct investigations of possible violations of these Acts. Investigations are initiated based on consumer complaints, referrals from outside agencies and surveillance. Investigations are confidential and no information is available to you until there is a hearing or a settlement that makes the information public.

The following are examples of actions that may be violations of the Acts:

  • Failure to register
  • Lack of disclosure or deficient disclosure
  • Unlawful offers
  • Misappropriation of funds
  • Fraud or attempt to defraud
  • Omission of material facts
  • Misrepresentations

Such violations may result in official civil actions by the Commission, or they may be referred to other state or federal agencies for criminal prosecution. The Securities Consumers Guide is recommended for anyone interested in investing.