Statutes of 2003 – Legislative Summary



Following are summaries of bills enacted into law that may directly affect filings made and business conducted with the Secretary of State’s office. Unless otherwise indicated, these measures took effect on January 1, 2004. To research other legislation that does not impact filings made or business conducted with the Secretary of State’s office but that may affect your business, please refer to the Bill Index section of the California Legislative Counsel’s website for a list of all bills introduced in the Assembly and Senate during the 2003–2004 legislative session.

The various California Codes (reflecting laws currently in effect) can be accessed through the California Law section of the California Legislative Counsel’s website.


Business Entities

Chapter 549 (AB 123 Cohn and Chavez)

This act expands the list of persons who may be shareholders, officers, directors, or professional employees of a dental corporation to include: licensed physicians and surgeons, dental assistants, registered dental assistants, registered dental assistants in extended functions, registered dental hygienists, registered dental hygienists in extended functions, and registered dental hygienists in alternative practice.

Chapter 273 (SB 220 Romero)

This act authorizes the submission by facsimile transmission of documents for filing with the Secretary of State pursuant to the Corporations Code. It provides that the term signature includes a signature in a facsimile document filed pursuant to the Corporations Code or regulations adopted pursuant to the Corporations Code and presented to the Secretary of State. Such a document will not be sent by facsimile transmission directly to the Secretary of State, but instead transmitted to a third party who will deliver it by mail, courier, or in person to the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State is required to accept facsimile signatures on documents that are delivered by mail or by hand. SB 220 specifies that the Secretary of State may adopt procedures to allow for direct electronic or facsimile transmission. This act also requires a person on whose behalf a document bearing a facsimile signature is submitted for filing to the Secretary of State to maintain the original signed document for at least five years from the date of filing.

Chapter 485 (SB 907 Burton)

This act establishes, until July 1, 2009, the Naturopathic Doctors Act. The provision that affects the Secretary of State is newly–amended Corporations Code § 13401.5, which permits naturopathic doctor corporations to form as professional corporations and allows naturopathic doctors to be shareholders, officers, directors, or professional employees of the following types of professional corporations: medical corporations, podiatric medical corporations, psychological corporations, nursing corporations, marriage and family therapy corporations, licensed clinical social worker corporations, physician assistants corporations, optometric corporations, chiropractic corporations, and acupuncture corporations.

Chapter 633 (SB 1061 Cedillo, Alpert, Bowen and Burton)
Urgency Legislation
Effective September 30, 2003

This act makes various changes to the Corporations Code, Government Code, and Revenue and Taxation Code. The provisions that affect the Secretary of State are newly–amended Corporations Code §§ 2205 and 5008.6, which allow a domestic stock corporation (§ 2205) or a domestic nonprofit corporation (§ 5008.6) that has been suspended by the Secretary of State to file an application for exempt status or amend its articles of incorporation to perfect that application. This act took effect as an urgency statute on September 30, 2003.

Chapter 557 (AB 512 Bates)

This act revises the Davis–Stirling Common Interest Development Act and adds provisions concerning decisionmaking and rulemaking by common interest development associations. The provision that affects the Secretary of State is new Civil Code § 1363.6(a)(4), which requires a common interest development association to include the name of the president of the association with the information the association is required to file with the Secretary of State.

Chapter 147 ( AB 1423 Dutra)
Urgency Legislation
Effective August 1, 2003

This act contains various provisions concerning common interest development managers. The provision that affects the Secretary of State is newly–amended Civil Code § 1363.5(a)(3), which repeals the requirement that a common interest development association specify in its articles of incorporation whether the association’s managing agent is certified pursuant to § 11502 of the Business and Professions Code. This amendment also removes this requirement from the statement of information, pursuant to Civil Code § 1363.5(b). This act took effect as an urgency statute on August 1, 2003.


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Notary Public

Chapter 513 (AB 1210 Nakano)
Effective January 1, 2005

Beginning January 1, 2005, this act requires any person seeking to qualify as a notary public to satisfactorily complete a six–hour course of study approved by the Secretary of State concerning the functions and duties of a notary public. A notary public applying for reappointment who has satisfactorily completed the six–hour course at least once previously will be required to provide satisfactory proof that he or she has completed a three–hour refresher course. The act requires the Secretary of State to review the course of study proposed by any vendor for this purpose and to approve the course of study if it includes all material that a person is expected to know to satisfactorily complete the notary public written examination. The Secretary of State would then compile a list of all persons offering an approved course of study and provide the list with every booklet of laws relating to notaries public that is distributed by the Secretary of State. The bill authorizes a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 per violation for vendors who violate any regulations adopted by the Secretary of State for approved vendors and requires vendors to pay restitution where appropriate.


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Uniform Commercial Code

Chapter 235 (SB 283 Sher)

This act makes various changes to the Commercial Code. The provisions that affect the Secretary of State are newly–amended Commercial Code § 9521 and Government Code § 12194, which permit the use of a financing statement form that does not include a space for the debtor’s social security number.


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