Section 16-46-6

Permit for solicitation of students.

(a) No person representing any private postsecondary institution or other individual or organization offering courses in this state, or from a place of business in this state, whether located within or outside this state, shall sell any course or solicit students therefor in this state for a consideration or remuneration unless a permit is first secured from the Department of Postsecondary Education, with the exception of agents representing schools exempted under Section 16-46-3. If the agent represents more than one school not exempted under Section 16-46-3, a separate permit shall be obtained for each school represented. The application for a permit shall be made on forms to be furnished by the Department of Postsecondary Education and shall be renewed every two years.

(b) Upon satisfactory review of an agent, the Department of Postsecondary Education shall issue a pocket card displaying the signature of the person, facial photo, name and address, the name and address of the employing private postsecondary institution or virtual school, and certifying that the person is an authorized agent of the entity. A permit shall be valid for two years from the date on which it was issued. This permit shall be carried on person when representing the institution or entity as an agent.

(c) Entities utilizing agents shall provide indemnification to any student suffering loss as a result of any fraud or misrepresentation used by the agents in procuring enrollment. This subsection only applies to entities subject to this section and not exempted under Section 16-46-3.

(d) One complimentary agent's permit may be issued to a designated owner, director, or managerial person of each private postsecondary institution or other entity subject to this section not exempted under Section 16-46-3, that is identified as a principal base of operation.

(e) No person shall be issued a permit to represent any private postsecondary institution or other entity subject to this section and not exempted under Section 16-46-3, whether located within or outside this state, until it has been determined by the Department of Postsecondary Education that the private postsecondary institution or other entity has qualified under the requirements of Section 16-46-5.

(f) Any permit applied for pursuant to this section shall be granted, deferred, or denied within 30 days of the receipt of the application therefor by the Department of Postsecondary Education.

(g) The Department of Postsecondary Education may invoke negative actions against any permit issued pursuant to this section if the holder of the permit solicits or enrolls students through fraud, deception, or misrepresentation or upon a finding that the license to operate the private postsecondary institution or entity represented is revoked or it is determined by the Department of Postsecondary Education that the private postsecondary institution or entity located outside of the state which the holder of the permit represents does not meet the requirements of Section 16-46-5. Negative actions shall include probation, suspension, and/or revocation.

(h) The fact that a surety is in force shall not limit or impair any right of recovery otherwise available under law, nor shall the amount of such bond be relevant in determining the amount of damages or other relief to which any plaintiff may be entitled.

(i) No recovery shall be had on any contract for or in connection with a course by any person selling or administering such course if the representative soliciting the students or selling the course was not the holder of a permit as required by this section at the time that such representative negotiated the contract for or sold such course.

(j) No recovery shall be had on any contract for or in connection with a course by any person or institution holding such a contract who is legally a third party or holding agent for one of the other parties where the selling of the course or the conduct or operation of the entity subject to this section or the administering of the course is carried on by use of fraud, deception, or other misrepresentation or if the person or persons operating the entity subject to this chapter, administering the course, or soliciting students is without a license provided by this chapter.

(k) The issuance of a permit pursuant to this section shall not be deemed to constitute endorsement of any course, person, or institution offering, conducting, or otherwise administering the same. Any representation contrary to this subsection or tending to imply that a permit issued pursuant to this section constitutes such endorsement shall be a misrepresentation within the meaning of this chapter. Permits to sell courses, solicit students, or otherwise represent an entity subject to this section that is located within this state may not be issued unless the entity first obtained a license to operate under Section 16-46-5, nor may permits be issued to represent entities subject to this section that are located outside of the state until it has been determined by the Department of Postsecondary Education that the private postsecondary institution qualifies under the requirements of Section 16-46-5.

(Acts 1971, 3rd Ex. Sess., No. 87, p. 4299, §7; Acts 1980, No. 80-272, p. 349, §1; Act 2004-282, p. 388, §1; Act 2014-245, p. 785, §5.)