While the SEC regulates and enforces the federal securities laws, each state has its own securities regulator who enforces what are known as "blue sky" laws. These laws cover many of the same activities the SEC regulates, such as the sale of securities and those who sell them, but are confined to securities sold or persons who sell them within each state. Your state securities regulator can confirm whether a company has been cleared to sell its securities in your state. Your regulator can also provide you information about a company doing business in the state.
In addition, state securities regulators generally oversee investment advisers who manage less than $100 million. These advisers must register with the state securities agency in the state where they have their principal place of business and must file a form called "Form ADV" with the state. You can get details about whether your investment adviser is registered with the SEC or a state securities authority on the Investment Adviser Public Disclosure Database available on Investor.gov.
Your state securities regulator can check the Central Registration Depository to tell you whether your broker or brokerage firm has disciplinary history. You can also get details about whether your broker or brokerage firm has disciplinary history on the Investment Adviser Public Disclosure Database available on Investor.gov.
If you have an investment problem or question, your state securities regulator may be able to help you. You can find out who your state securities regulator is by visiting the website of the North American Securities Administrators Association or by calling (202) 737-0900. We also have information on other state regulators.