§ 43-17-4. Bonding requirements for registered paid solicitors; deposits in lieu of bond.

CODE OF GEORGIA

Title 43. PROFESSIONS AND BUSINESSES

Chapter 17. CHARITABLE SOLICITATIONS

Current through 2019 Chapter 321

§ 43-17-4. Bonding requirements for registered paid solicitors; deposits in lieu of bond

(a) An applicant for registration as a paid solicitor who will have physical possession or legal control over any contributions collected by it in or from this state on behalf of any charitable organizations shall file with the Secretary of State a bond satisfactory to the Secretary of State in the sum of $10,000.00 payable to the State of Georgia for the use of all interested persons and conditioned upon the faithful compliance by the principal with any and all provisions of this chapter and any regulations and orders issued by the Secretary of State. Such an applicant for renewal of registration as a paid solicitor shall also file such bond. Except as otherwise provided in subsection (b) of this Code section, the Secretary of State shall not register such an applicant or renew the registration of such an applicant until such bond is filed as provided in this subsection. Any such bond may be canceled by the principal or surety by giving notice to the Secretary of State, but such cancellation shall not affect any cause of action accruing thereon prior to cancellation and such cancellation shall result in automatic cancellation of the principal's registration until a new bond satisfactory to the Secretary of State is filed. Any action on such bond must be brought within two years after accrual of the cause of action. The amount prescribed in this subsection for the bond required of a paid solicitor shall be construed as being the aggregate liability recoverable against such bond, regardless of the number of claimants, and shall not be construed as individual liability.
(b) The requirement for filing of such bond by an applicant for registration or renewal of registration as a paid solicitor shall not be applicable if the applicant for registration or renewal of registration as a paid solicitor has deposited in trust with the Secretary of State:
(1) A certificate of deposit or letter of credit evidencing a deposit with a financial institution satisfactory to the Secretary of State in the amount of $10,000.00 payable to the applicant and assigned to the Secretary of State;
(2) An irrevocable letter of credit addressed to the Secretary of State in the amount of $10,000.00, issued by a bank which is a member of the Federal Reserve System and conditioned only upon the rendering of a judgment by a court of competent jurisdiction in which the applicant is found liable for damages under this chapter; or
(3) Obligations of the United States, an agency thereof, or the State of Georgia which mature in not more than two years and which have a market value as of the date of deposit of at least $10,000.00.
(c) Such deposits shall be held for the benefit of all persons to whom the applicant is liable for damages under this chapter for a period of two years after such applicant's registration has expired or been revoked; provided, however, such deposits shall not be released at any time while there is pending against the applicant an action (including any direct appeal of such action or an appeal based on a petition for certiorari jurisdiction), of which the Secretary of State has notice, in a court of competent jurisdiction in which it is alleged that the applicant is liable for damages under this chapter. Such deposits shall not be released except upon application to and the written order of the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State shall have no liability for any such release of any deposit or part thereof made by him in good faith. The Secretary of State may designate any regularly constituted state depository having trust powers domiciled in this state as a depository to receive and hold any such deposit. Any such deposit so held shall be at the expense of the applicant. Such depository shall give to the Secretary of State a proper trust and safekeeping receipt upon which the Secretary of State shall give an official receipt to the applicant. The State of Georgia shall be responsible for the safekeeping and return of all deposits made pursuant to this Code section. So long as the applicant complies with this chapter, the applicant may demand, receive, bring an action for, and recover the income from the securities deposited or may exchange and substitute for the letter of credit or securities deposited or a part thereof, with the approval of the Secretary of State, a letter of credit or securities of the kinds specified in subsection (b) of this Code section of equivalent or greater value. No judgment creditor or other claimant of the applicant shall levy upon any deposit held pursuant to this Code section or upon any part thereof, except as specified in this subsection. Whenever any person shall file an action in a court of competent jurisdiction in which it is alleged that the applicant is liable for damages under this chapter, such person, in order to secure his recovery, may give notice to the Secretary of State of such alleged liability and of the amount of damages claimed, after which notice the Secretary of State shall be bound to retain, subject to the order of the Superior Court of Fulton County, as provided in subsection (d) of this Code section, a sufficient amount of the deposit to pay the judgment in the action.
(d) In the event that the applicant prevails in such action and in the event that such deposits have been held by the Secretary of State for a period of at least two years after the applicant's registration has expired or been revoked, then such deposits shall be released to the applicant; provided, however, such deposits shall not be released at any time while there is pending against the applicant an action (including any direct appeal of such action or an appeal based on a petition for certiorari jurisdiction), of which the Secretary of State has notice, in a court of competent jurisdiction in which it is alleged that the applicant is liable for damages under this chapter. If a judgment is rendered in such action by which it is determined that the applicant is liable for damages under this chapter and the applicant has not paid the judgment within ten days of the date the judgment became final or if the applicant petitions the Supreme Court of the United States to take certiorari jurisdiction over such action and the applicant has not paid the judgment within ten days of the date the Supreme Court of the United States denies certiorari jurisdiction or within ten days of the date the Supreme Court of the United States affirms the judgment, then such person may petition the Superior Court of Fulton County for an order directing the Secretary of State to reduce such deposit or a portion thereof sufficient to pay the judgment to cash or its equivalent and to pay such judgment to the extent the judgment may be satisfied with the proceeds of the deposit. If there shall remain any residue from the deposit and if at least two years have passed since the expiration or revocation of the applicant's registration, the Secretary of State shall pay such residue to the applicant, taking his receipt for the residue, which shall be filed and recorded with the other papers of the case, unless there is pending against the applicant an action (including any direct appeal of such action or an appeal based on a petition for certiorari jurisdiction), of which the Secretary of State has notice, in a court of competent jurisdiction in which it is alleged that the applicant is liable for damages under this chapter, in which case the Secretary of State shall hold or dispose of such residue in accordance with the provisions of this subsection relating to the holding or disposing of the entire deposit. If more than one final judgment is rendered against the applicant for violation of this chapter, the judgment creditors shall be paid in full from such deposit or residue thereof, to the extent the deposit or residue is sufficient to pay the judgments, in the order in which the judgment creditors petitioned the Superior Court of Fulton County.
(e) Anything in this Code section to the contrary notwithstanding, the Secretary of State shall comply with any order of a Georgia or United States court of competent jurisdiction to turn over any deposit held by him pursuant to subsection (a) of this Code section or the proceeds from any bond held by him pursuant to subsection (a) of this Code section to a trustee or receiver for the use and sole benefit of persons on whose behalf the Secretary of State holds such deposit or proceeds.

Cite as OCGA § 43-17-4