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LOS ANGELES – Beginning at 12:00 noon on June 18, 2014, franchisors will be required to file and submit payment for franchise registration applications and exemption notices, under the Franchise Investment Law, by using the department’s self-service portal.
At that time, CALEASI, the current electronic database of filings, will be phased out. Information previously found there will be transferred to the DOCQNET website.
Pursuant to Governor Edmund Brown’s Reorganization Plan on July 1, 2013, the Department of Corporations and Department of Financial Institutions became the Department of Business Oversight (DBO). It provides protection to consumers and services to businesses engaged in financial transactions. Some of the services include overseeing the operations of state-licensed financial institutions, such as banks, credit unions, money transmitters.
The Department licenses and regulates the offer and sale of securities, franchises and off-exchange commodities. It also regulates financial businesses, including securities brokers and dealers, investment advisers, deferred deposit transactions known as payday loans. For a complete list of what it regulates, go to DBO’s website, Licensees and Regulated Industries.
Mark Leyes, director of communications at California Department of Business Oversight explained that today, Friday the 13th at 5:00 p.m. PST, the conversion is going to begin. They will be shutting down current systems and bringing up the new self-service portal by noon next Wednesday, June 18.
“That means franchisors will not be able to file franchise applications for the next two and a half business days. Most companies have been notified of the conversion, and they have filed prior to the deadline. Others will plan on filing after the new system is up,” Leyes explained.
Although Caleasi is being phased out, users can still use it to enter the new system. The director said, “If they have it bookmarked and click on it after the conversion, it will take them to a landing page that will give instructions on how to use the site going forward. At a later date, it will all be done through the self-support portal.
Leyes said the updated process should be easier, especially for new users. And it will allow people to search the entire database. That will include the current Caleasi information and enforcement actions. Leyes said, “Now, those are two separate searches in two separate databases. That should make it easier having them combined.”
As of next Wednesday, Leyes said there should be a complete interactive process online, so that a filer can apply, amend or renew all through the licensee portal at the DBO website. “They will also be able to make their payment electronically, instead of sending their physical checks, although for the time being we will still accept mailed checks.
Leyes expressed that it is hard to describe the new system until users can see it. “Today, no one can see it because it is not live. Looking at some of the samples, I can see that it will be good, and people will like it.”
The director said in the past, many of the different systems in law areas have not been very compatible with each other. “That was exasperated when our department combined with the Department of Financial Institutions almost a year ago. What the new system will do is link the databases in one platform, and it should increase efficiency. And it should ultimately improve application turnaround time,” he explained.
Will there be other changes in the Department’s site? Leyes answers, “We are doing some clean up as we move through this process because we have identified some dead links and archaic information. But basically, everything else is going to remain the same.”