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Some clarity on the once-every-12-month aspect of the Issuer Exemption

Panelists: OSVALDO TORRES, JACKIE PRESTER, RONALD FIELDSTONE
Moderator: KURT REUSS

Ronnie_and_Kurt 

Rule 3(a)4-1, often referred to as the 'Issuer Exemption', restricts an issuer from offering its own securities for a period of 12 months following the conclusion of the issuer's previous offering. So if we assume an EB5 investment comes to market and is solicited by the issuer for a period of say 9 months, then the issuer wouldn't be able to begin a new investment offering for 12-months after the first offering is concluded. Is that right?

Ronnie Fieldstone: I would like to emphasize that the 'safe harbor' rules are just that, a safe harbor, and failure to comply with the 12-month rule does not otherwise negate the existence of an exemption. 

Kurt Reuss: If an issuer does not follow 3(a)4-1 strictly, which allows the issuer to solicit its own securities to investors, then it becomes a judgement call by the SEC based on the facts and circumstances of the deal, but if an issuer wants to rely on the safe harbor of the issuer exemption, the exemption from registration as a broker-dealer, then the issuer would need to abide by all the guidelines of 3(a)4-1 including having a 12-month gap between the end of one offering and the beginning of the next.