2017 Wisconsin Statutes & Annotations
Chapter 553. Wisconsin franchise investment law.
(1) The department of justice or any district attorney, upon informing the department of justice, may commence an action in circuit court in the name of the state to restrain by temporary or permanent injunction any act or practice constituting a violation of this chapter or any rule or order hereunder. The division may refer such evidence as is available concerning any violation to the district attorney of the county in which the violation occurred or to the attorney general who may institute proceedings under this section.
(a) The court may, prior to the entry of final judgment, issue such orders or judgments as are necessary to restore to any person any pecuniary loss suffered because of the acts or practices involved in the action if proof of the pecuniary loss is submitted to the satisfaction of the court. Orders or judgments under this paragraph shall not provide restoration of any pecuniary loss to persons for whom recovery is sought where the defendant in the action establishes that the persons were in possession of knowledge which would defeat recovery by them in a private civil action under s. 553.51 (2). Persons liable for pecuniary losses under this paragraph are the same as provided under s. 553.51 (3).
(b) Upon a proper showing, a temporary or permanent injunction or restraining order shall be granted and a receiver or conservator may be appointed for the defendant or the defendant's assets. The court shall not require the department of justice to post a bond.
(3) The department of justice may subpoena persons, administer oaths, take testimony, require the production of books and other documents and may request the division to exercise the division's authority under s. 553.55 to aid in the investigation of alleged violations of this chapter. If a person fails to obey any subpoena issued by the department of justice, that person may be coerced under s. 885.12, except that no person shall be required to furnish any testimony or evidence under this subsection which might tend to incriminate that person.
(4) In lieu of instituting or continuing an action pursuant to this section, the division or the department of justice may accept a written assurance of discontinuance of any act or practice alleged to be a violation of this chapter from the person who has engaged in such act or practice. The acceptance of such assurance by either the division or the department of justice shall be deemed acceptance by other state officials if the terms of the assurance so provide. An assurance entered into pursuant to this subsection shall not be considered evidence of a violation of this chapter, however, a violation of such an assurance constitutes a violation of this chapter and shall be subject to all penalties and remedies provided therefor.