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2016 Florida Statutes

Chapter 618
AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVE MARKETING ASSOCIATIONS
CHAPTER 618
CHAPTER 618
AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVE MARKETING ASSOCIATIONS
618.01 Definitions.
618.02 Who may organize association.
618.03 Preliminary investigation.
618.04 Articles of incorporation; fees.
618.05 Amendment of articles of incorporation.
618.06 Purposes of incorporation.
618.07 Powers of corporations.
618.08 Corporations may mortgage farm supplies.
618.09 Bylaws.
618.10 Membership of corporation.
618.11 How meetings called.
618.12 Directors; election.
618.13 Officers; election.
618.14 Removal of officers and directors.
618.15 Capital stock and membership.
618.16 Referendum upon certain motions.
618.17 Marketing contracts.
618.18 Remedies for breach of marketing contract.
618.19 Contracts and agreements with other like associations.
618.20 Purchase of interest in like corporations.
618.21 Corporations not in restraint of trade.
618.22 Adoption of provisions of this chapter by prior corporations.
618.221 Conversion into a corporation for profit.
618.23 Quo warranto to test validity of corporation.
618.24 Application of general corporation laws.
618.25 Dissolution.
618.26 Conditions under which foreign similar corporation may do business in this state.
618.27 Use of term “cooperative.”
618.28 This chapter not to affect certain laws.
618.01 Definitions.In construing this chapter, where the context permits, the word, phrase, or term:
(1) “Agricultural products” shall include aquacultural, horticultural, viticultural, forestry, aquatic, dairy, livestock, poultry, bee, and any farm products.
(2) “Member” shall include actual members of associations without capital stock and holders of common stock in associations organized with capital stock.
(3) “Association” means any corporation organized as a cooperative association, for the mutual benefit of its members either as producers of agricultural products or as nonprofit cooperative organizations of producers of agricultural products, or both, and in which the return on the stock or membership capital is limited to an amount not to exceed 8 percent per annum, and in which during any fiscal year thereof the value of business done with nonmembers shall not exceed the business done with members during the same period.
(4) Associations organized hereunder shall be deemed “nonprofit,” inasmuch as they are not organized to make profit for themselves, as such, or for their members, as such, but only for their members as producers.
History.s. 2, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6467; s. 2, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 1, ch. 74-88; s. 8, ch. 87-367.
618.02 Who may organize association.Three or more persons engaged in the production of any agricultural products, or three or more associations, may form a nonprofit cooperative association under the provisions of this chapter.
History.s. 3, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6468; s. 3, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.03 Preliminary investigation.Every group of persons contemplating the organization of an association under this chapter is urged to communicate with the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, which will inform it whatever a survey of the marketing conditions affecting the commodities to be handled by the proposed association indicates regarding probable success.
History.s. 5, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6470; s. 5, ch. 14675, 1931; ss. 14, 35, ch. 69-106.
618.04 Articles of incorporation; fees.Each association organized under this chapter shall prepare and file articles of incorporation setting forth:
(1) The name of the association, which may or may not include the word “cooperative” or any abbreviation thereof;
(2) The purpose for which it is formed;
(3) The place where its principal office within the state will be located;
(4) Whether the association is to have perpetual existence and, if not, the term of its existence;
(5) The names and addresses (not less than three), of those who are to serve as directors for the first term or until the election of their successors;
(6) If organized without capital stock, whether the property rights and interest of each member shall be equal or unequal; if unequal, the general rules applicable to all members by which the property rights and interest, respectively, of each member may and shall be determined and fixed; and provision for the admission of new members, who shall be entitled to share in the property of the association with the old members, in accordance with such general rules. This provision or paragraph of the articles of incorporation shall not be altered, amended or repealed, except by the written consent or vote of three-fourths of the members;
(7) If organized with capital stock, the amount of such stock and the number of shares into which the capital stock is to be divided, whether all or part of the same shall have a par value, and if so, the par value thereof, whether all or part of the same shall have no par value, and if there is to be more than one class of stock created, a description of the different classes, the number of shares in each class, and the relative rights, interests, and preferences each class shall represent;
(8)(a) In addition to the foregoing, the articles of incorporation of any association incorporated hereunder may contain any provision consistent with law with respect to management, regulation, government, financing, indebtedness, membership, the establishment of voting districts, and the election of delegates for representative purposes, the issuance, retirement and transfer of its stock, if formed with capital stock or any provisions relative to the way or manner in which it shall operate or with respect to its members, officers, or directors, and any other provisions relating to its affairs.
(b) The articles shall be subscribed by the incorporators and acknowledged by one of them, if individuals, or by the president or any vice president of one of them, if corporations, before an officer authorized by law to take and certify acknowledgments of deeds and conveyances, and shall be filed with the Department of State accompanied by a fee of $52.50 which shall be the only fee required therefor; and thereupon the association shall be and constitute a body corporate under the provisions of this chapter, and a copy of said articles of incorporation certified by the Department of State shall be received in all the courts of this state and other places, as prima facie evidence of the facts contained therein and of the due incorporation of such association.
History.s. 8, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6473; s. 8, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 2, ch. 16879, 1935; s. 1, ch. 29813, 1955; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 16, ch. 71-114; s. 70, ch. 90-132.
618.05 Amendment of articles of incorporation.The articles of incorporation may be altered or amended at any regular meeting or any special meeting called for the purpose. An amendment must first be approved by two-thirds of the directors and then adopted by a vote representing a majority of a quorum of the members attending a meeting of which notice of the proposed amendment shall have been given. Thereupon the association shall make under its corporate seal and the hands of its president or vice president and secretary or assistant secretary, a certificate accordingly, and the president or vice president shall duly execute and acknowledge such certificate before an officer authorized by law to take and certify acknowledgments of deeds, and such certificate so executed and acknowledged shall be filed with the Department of State; and upon so filing the same, the articles of incorporation of such association shall be deemed to be amended accordingly; provided, however, a fee of only $15 shall be required therefor by the Department of State.
History.s. 9, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6474; s. 9, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 3, ch. 16879, 1935; ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 17, ch. 71-114.
618.06 Purposes of incorporation.An association may be organized under this chapter for the purpose of engaging in any cooperative activity in connection with the producing, marketing, or selling of agricultural products; or with the growing, harvesting, preserving, drying, processing, canning, packing, grading, storing, warehousing, handling, shipping, or utilizing such products; or the manufacturing or marketing of the byproducts thereof; or in connection with any of the activities mentioned herein, the manufacturing, selling, or supplying of machinery, equipment or supplies; or in the financing of any of the above-enumerated activities; or in performing or furnishing business or educational services, on a cooperative basis for those engaged in agriculture as bona fide producers of agricultural products or in any one or more of the activities specified herein.
History.s. 4, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6469; s. 4, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.07 Powers of corporations.Except as the same may be limited in its articles of incorporation, each association organized under this chapter shall have the following powers:
(1) To engage in any activity in connection with the producing, marketing, selling, preserving, growing, harvesting, drying, processing, manufacturing, canning, packing, grading, warehousing, storing, handling, or utilizing of agricultural products or in the manufacturing or marketing of the byproducts thereof; or in any activities in connection with the manufacturing, purchasing, hiring or using supplies, machinery, or equipment; or in the financing of any of the above-enumerated activities, or in performing business or educational services, on a cooperative basis, for those engaged in agriculture as bona fide producers of agricultural products; or in any one or more of the activities specified herein;
(2) To borrow money from any source without limitation as to amount of corporate indebtedness or liability, with authority to give any kind or form of obligation or security therefor;
(3) To act as the agent or representative of any person in any of the above-mentioned activities;
(4) To make loans or advances to members and to their members, to nonmember patrons, and to nonmember patrons of members, with authority to accept therefor any kind, form or type of obligation with or without security; to purchase, endorse, discount, sell, or guarantee the payment of any note, draft, bill of exchange, indenture, bill of sale, mortgage, or other obligation, the proceeds of which have been advanced or used in the first instance for any of the purposes provided for herein; to discount for or purchase from any association organized under the laws of any state, with or without its endorsement, any note, draft, bill of exchange, indenture, bill of sale, mortgage, or other obligation the proceeds of which are advanced or used in the first instance for carrying on any cooperative activity authorized in this chapter and with authority to dispose of same with or without endorsement. An association organized under this chapter and exercising any of the powers provided in this subsection shall not engage in the business of banking;
(5) To purchase or otherwise acquire, to hold, own, and exercise all rights of ownership in, and to sell, transfer, pledge, or guarantee the payment of dividends or interest on, or the retirement or redemption of shares, of capital stock, bonds, or other obligations of any corporation or association, engaged in any directly or indirectly related activity, or in the producing, picking, hauling, packing, shipping, handling, warehousing, financing, canning, preserving, processing, manufacturing, utilizing, marketing, or selling of any of the products handled by the association, or any byproducts thereof;
(6) To establish reserves and to invest the funds thereof in bonds, or in such other property as may be provided in the bylaws;
(7) To buy, hold, and exercise all privileges of ownership over such real or personal property, as may be necessary or convenient for the conduct and operation of any of the business of the association or incidental thereto;
(8) To sell, convey, and transfer all of the assets of the association; provided, such sale shall be consented to by not less than two-thirds of its members or by the holders of not less than two-thirds of its common stock, which consent shall be given either in writing, or by vote at a special meeting of its members or stockholders called for that purpose;
(9) To establish, secure, own, and develop patents, trademarks, and copyrights;
(10) To do each and everything necessary, suitable or proper for the accomplishment of any one of the purposes, or the attainment of any one or more of the objects herein enumerated, or conducive to or expedient for the interest or benefit of the association, and to contract accordingly; and in addition, to exercise and possess all powers, rights, and privileges necessary or incidental to the purposes for which the association is organized or to the activities in which it is engaged, and any other rights, powers, and privileges granted by the laws of this state to corporations for profit, except such as are inconsistent with the express provisions of this chapter; and to do any such thing anywhere;
(11) No association organized under this chapter, during any fiscal year thereof, shall deal in or handle products, machinery, equipment, supplies, or perform services for and on behalf of nonmembers to an amount greater in value than such as are dealt in, handled, or performed by it for and on behalf of members during the same period.
History.s. 6, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6471; s. 6, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 1, ch. 16879, 1935.
618.08 Corporations may mortgage farm supplies.A mortgage, executed by a cooperative association, may cover its stock of farm supplies, changing in specifics, which stock mortgagor is permitted to retain in its possession and sell in the usual course of business. The lien of such mortgage shall be lost on all farm supplies sold up to the time of foreclosure, and shall attach to the farm supplies acquired to replenish the stock. No such mortgage shall be invalid as to creditors of the mortgagor because the mortgagor is permitted to retain possession and sell such mortgaged property in the usual course of business; provided, the mortgagor replenishes such property from the proceeds of sale or applies such proceeds in payment of the mortgage debt. In all other respects the laws relating to chattel mortgages shall be applicable to such mortgages.
History.ss. 1, 2, ch. 17111, 1935; CGL 1936 Supp. 6471(1); s. 1, ch. 99-3.
618.09 Bylaws.Each association incorporated under this chapter shall adopt for its government and management, a code of bylaws not inconsistent with the powers granted by this chapter. A majority vote of a quorum of the members or stockholders attending a meeting, of which notice of the proposed bylaws shall have been given, is sufficient to adopt or amend the bylaws. Each association, under its bylaws, may provide for any or all of the following matters:
(1) The time, place, and manner of calling and conducting its meetings, which meetings and meetings of its directors, may be held either within or without the state.
(2) The number of stockholders or members constituting a quorum.
(3) The right of members or stockholders to vote by proxy or by mail or both; and the conditions, manner, form, and effects of such votes.
(4) The number of directors constituting a quorum.
(5) The qualifications, compensation, and duties and term of office of directors and officers; time of their election and the mode and manner of giving notice thereof.
(6) Penalties for violations of the bylaws.
(7) The amount of entrance, organization, and membership fees, if any; the manner and method of collection of the same; and the purposes for which they may be used.
(8) The amount which each member or stockholder shall be required to pay annually or from time to time, if at all, to carry on the business of the association; the charge, if any, to be paid by each member or stockholder for services rendered by the association to him or her and the time of payment and the manner of collection; and the form of marketing contract between the association and its members or stockholders, which marketing contract shall be binding upon every member or stockholder, unless otherwise agreed upon in writing.
(9) The number and qualification of members or stockholders of the association and the conditions precedent to membership or ownership of common stock; the method, time, and manner of permitting members to withdraw or the holders of common stock to transfer their stock; the manner of assignment and transfer of the interest of members and of the shares of common stock; the condition upon which and time when membership of any member shall cease; the automatic suspension of the rights of a member when he or she ceases to be eligible to membership in the association; the mode, manner, and effect of the expulsion of a member; whether a member upon withdrawal, death, or expulsion shall have any interest in the property of the association, if organized without capital stock; the manner of determining the value of the property interest or the shares of common stock of retiring or expelled members, which interest or stock may be conclusively appraised by the board of directors of the association and purchased by the association at such value within 1 year after the date of such retirement or expulsion.
History.s. 10, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6475; s. 10, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 4, ch. 16879, 1935; s. 7, ch. 22858, 1945; s. 108, ch. 97-102.
618.10 Membership of corporation.
(1) Under the terms and conditions prescribed in the bylaws adopted by it, an association may admit as members, or issue common stock only to persons engaged in the production of agricultural products and to associations as defined in this chapter.
(2) An association organized hereunder may become a member or stockholder of any other association or corporation.
History.s. 7, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6472; s. 7, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 7, ch. 22858, 1945.
618.11 How meetings called.In its bylaws each association shall provide for one or more regular meetings annually. The board of directors shall have the right to call a special meeting at any time, and 10 percent of the members or stockholders may file a petition stating the specific business to be brought before the association and demand a special meeting at any time. Such meeting must thereupon be called by the directors. Notice of all special meetings, together with a statement of the purpose thereof, shall be mailed to each member at least 10 days prior to the meeting; provided, however, that the bylaws may require instead that such notice may be given by publication in a newspaper of general circulation, published at the principal place of business of the association.
History.s. 11, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6476; s. 11, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.12 Directors; election.
(1) The affairs of the association shall be managed by a board of not less than three directors, to be elected by the members or stockholders, with such qualifications as may be provided for in the articles of incorporation or the bylaws. The bylaws may provide that the territory in which the association has members shall be divided into districts and that the directors shall be nominated according to such district, either directly or by district delegates elected by the members in that district. In such case the bylaws shall specify the number of directors to be nominated by each district, the manner and method of reapportioning the directors and of redistricting the territory covered by the association. The bylaws may provide that primary elections shall be held in each district to nominate the directors apportioned to such districts and the result of all such primary elections may be ratified by the next regular meeting of the association or may be considered final as to the association. The bylaws may provide that one or more directors may be nominated by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services or by the other directors nominated by the members or their delegates. Such directors shall represent primarily the interest of the general public in such associations. Such directors shall not number more than one-third of the entire number of directors.
(2) An association may provide a fair remuneration for the time actually spent by its officers and directors in the service and for the service of the members of its executive committee. No director, during the term of her or his office, shall be a party to a contract for profit with the association differing in any way from the business relations accorded regular members or holders of common stock of the association or others, or differing from terms generally current in that district.
(3) The bylaws may provide for an executive committee to be elected by the board of directors from within or without the membership of the board and may allot to such committee all the functions and powers of the board of directors, subject to the general direction and control of the board.
(4) When a vacancy on the board of directors occurs other than by expiration of term, the remaining members of the board, by a majority vote, shall fill the vacancy, unless the bylaws provide for the nomination of directors by districts. In such case the board of directors shall call a special meeting of the members or stockholders in the respective district to nominate a person qualified to fill the vacancy.
History.s. 12, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6477; s. 12, ch. 14675, 1931; ss. 14, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 109, ch. 97-102.
618.13 Officers; election.The directors shall elect from their number a president and one or more vice presidents. They shall also elect a secretary, a treasurer, and such other officers as may be provided for in the bylaws, none of whom need be directors or members of the association. The office of secretary and treasurer may be combined into one office designated as secretary-treasurer, or both functions and titles may be united in one person. The treasurer may be a bank or any depository, and as such, shall not be considered as an officer, but as a function of the board of directors, and in such case the secretary shall perform the usual accounting duties of the treasurer excepting that the funds shall be deposited only as and where authorized by the board of directors.
History.s. 13, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6478; s. 13, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.14 Removal of officers and directors.
(1) Any member may bring charges against an officer or director by filing them in writing with the secretary of the association, together with a petition signed by 10 percent of the members, requesting the removal of the officer or director in question. The removal shall be voted upon at the next regular or special meeting of the association, and by a vote of a majority of the members, the association may remove the officer or director and fill the vacancy. The director or officer against whom such charges have been brought shall be informed in writing of the charges previous to the meeting and shall have an opportunity at the meeting to be heard in person or by counsel and to present witnesses, and the person bringing the charges against him or her shall have the same opportunity.
(2) In case the bylaws provide for election of directors by districts with primary elections in each district then the petition for removal of a director must be signed by 20 percent of the members residing in the district from which he or she was elected. The board of directors must call a special meeting of the members residing in that district to consider the removal of the director. By a vote of the majority of the members of that district, the director in question shall be removed from office.
History.s. 15, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6480; s. 15, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 110, ch. 97-102.
618.15 Capital stock and membership.
(1) When a member of an association organized without capital stock has paid his or her membership fee in full the member shall receive a certificate of membership. An association may issue its shares of stock having no par value from time to time for such consideration as may be fixed by the board of directors. No association shall issue stock until it has been fully paid for. Promissory notes may be accepted by the association as full or partial payment for such stock. The association shall hold the stock as security for the payment of the note; but such retention as security shall not affect the right of any stockholder to vote unless such notes are past due.
(2) No member shall be liable for the debts of the association to an amount exceeding the sum remaining unpaid on his or her membership fee or subscription to capital stock, including any unpaid balance on any promissory notes given in payment thereof.
(3) No stockholder of an association organized under this chapter, except an association organized under this chapter or an association as defined in this chapter, shall own more than one-third of the outstanding common stock of the association; and an association in its bylaws may limit the amount of common stock which one member may own to an amount less than one-third of the outstanding common stock. The association shall limit its dividends on stock both common and preferred, to any amount not greater than 8 percent per annum on the par value thereof, or if such capital stock is without par value, then upon the actual cash value of the consideration received by the association therefor. The association by the vote of its directors, may establish and accumulate reserves out of earnings, including a permanent surplus fund as an addition to capital. Net income in excess of additions to reserves and surpluses so established shall be distributed to the members of the association on the basis of patronage. Any distribution of reserves and surpluses at any time shall be made to members at the time such distribution is ordered on the basis of patronage.
(4) Any receipts or dividends from subsidiary corporations or from stock or other securities owned by the association shall be included in the ordinary receipts of the association.
(5) No member in any association without capital stock shall be entitled to more than one vote; but the bylaws may provide that such members or the holders of common stock in an association with capital stock, may vote upon any or all questions on a patronage basis.
(6) Preferred stock may be sold to any person, member or nonmember, and may be redeemable or retirable by the association on such terms and conditions as may be provided for in the articles of incorporation, and printed on the stock certificates. The bylaws, except as otherwise provided for in this chapter, shall prohibit the transfer of the common stock of the association to persons not engaged in the production of agricultural products and such restrictions shall be printed upon every certificate of stock subject thereto.
History.s. 14, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6479; s. 14, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 111, ch. 97-102.
618.16 Referendum upon certain motions.Upon demand of one-third of the entire board of directors made immediately and so recorded at the same meeting at which the original motion was passed any matter that has been approved or passed by the board must be referred to the entire membership or the stockholders for decision at the next special or regular meeting; provided, however, that a special meeting may be called for the purpose.
History.s. 16, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6481; s. 16, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.17 Marketing contracts.The association and its members may make and execute marketing contracts requiring the members to sell, for any period of time, all or any specified part of their agricultural products or specified commodities exclusively to or through the association or any agencies designated by the association. The contracts may provide that the association may sell or resell the products of its members with or without taking title thereto; and pay to its members the resale price, after deducting all necessary selling, overhead and other costs and expenses, including interest or dividends on stock, not exceeding 8 percent per annum, and reserves for retiring the stock, if any; and other proper reserves; and any other proper deductions.
History.s. 17, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6482(1); s. 17, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.18 Remedies for breach of marketing contract.
(1) The bylaws and the marketing contract may fix, as liquidated damages, specific sums to be paid by the member or stockholder of the association upon the breach by her or him of any provisions of the marketing contract regarding the sale or delivery or withholding of products; and may further provide that the member will pay all costs, premiums for bonds, expenses and fees in case any action is brought upon the contract by the association; and any such provisions shall be valid and enforceable in the courts of this state.
(2) In the event of any such breach or threatened breach of such marketing contract by a member, the association shall be entitled to an injunction to prevent the further breach of the contract and to a decree of specific performance thereof. Pending the adjudication of such an action and upon filing a verified complaint showing the breach or threatened breach, and upon filing a sufficient bond, the association shall be entitled to a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against the member.
History.s. 17, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6482(1); s. 18, ch. 14675, 1931; CGL 1936 Supp. 6482(1); s. 7, ch. 22858, 1945; s. 112, ch. 97-102.
618.19 Contracts and agreements with other like associations.Any association may, upon resolution adopted by its board of directors, enter into all necessary and proper contracts and agreements and make all necessary and proper stipulations, agreements and contracts, and arrangements with any other cooperative corporation, association or associations, formed in this or in any other state, for the cooperative and more economical carrying on of its business or any part thereof. Any two or more associations may, by agreement between them, unite in employing and using or may separately employ and use the same personnel, methods, means, and agencies for carrying on and conducting their respective businesses.
History.s. 22, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6487; s. 22, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.20 Purchase of interest in like corporations.
(1) An association may organize, form, operate, own, control, have an interest in, own stock of, or be a member of any other association or corporation, with or without capital stock, and engaged in planting, growing, producing, preserving, drying, processing, canning, packing, storing, warehousing, handling, shipping, utilizing, manufacturing, or selling of agricultural products, or byproducts thereof; or in performing business or educational services; or in the financing of any of the above enumerated activities.
(2) If such corporations are warehousing corporations, they may issue legal warehouse receipts to the associations against the commodities delivered by it, or to any other person and such legal warehouse receipts shall be considered as adequate collateral to the extent of the usual and current value of the commodity represented thereby. In case such warehouse is licensed, or licensed and bonded under the laws of this or any other state or the United States, its warehouse receipt delivered to the association on commodities of the association or its members, or delivered by the association or its members, shall not be challenged or discriminated against because of ownership or control wholly or in part, by the association.
History.s. 21, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6486; s. 21, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.21 Corporations not in restraint of trade.No association as defined in this chapter while engaged in any of the activities specified in s. 618.20 shall be deemed to be a conspiracy, or a combination in unlawful restraint of trade, or an illegal monopoly, or an attempt to lessen competition or to fix prices arbitrarily; nor shall the marketing contracts and agreements between the association and its members or any agreements authorized in this chapter, be considered illegal as such, or in unlawful restraint of trade, or part of a conspiracy or combination to accomplish an improper or illegal purpose.
History.s. 24, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6489; s. 24, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.22 Adoption of provisions of this chapter by prior corporations.Any corporation or association, organized under previously existing statutes, may, by a majority vote of its stockholders or members, be brought under the provisions of this chapter by limiting its membership and adopting the other restrictions as provided herein. It shall make out in duplicate a statement signed and sworn to by its directors to the effect that the corporation or association has, by a majority vote of its stockholders or members, decided to accept the benefits and be bound by the provisions of this chapter and has authorized all changes accordingly. Articles of incorporation shall be filed as required in s. 618.04, except that they shall be signed by the members of the then board of directors. The filing fee shall be the same as for filing an amendment to articles of incorporation.
History.s. 23, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6488; s. 23, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.221 Conversion into a corporation for profit.Any association incorporated under or that has adopted the provisions of this chapter, may, by a majority vote of its stockholders or members be brought under part I of chapter 607, as a corporation for profit by surrendering all right to carry on its business under this chapter, and the privileges and immunities incident thereto. It shall make out in duplicate a statement signed and sworn to by its directors to the effect that the association has, by a majority vote of its stockholders or members, decided to surrender all rights, powers, and privileges as a nonprofit cooperative marketing association under this chapter and to do business under and be bound by part I of chapter 607, as a corporation for profit and has authorized all changes accordingly. Articles of incorporation shall be delivered to the Department of State for filing as required under part I of chapter 607, except that they shall be signed by the members of the then board of directors. The filing fees and taxes shall be as provided under part I of chapter 607. Such articles of incorporation shall adequately protect and preserve the relative rights of the stockholders or members of the association so converting into a corporation for profit; provided that no rights or obligations due any stockholder or member of such association or any other person, firm, or corporation which have not been waived or satisfied shall be impaired by such conversion into a corporation for profit as herein authorized.
History.s. 2, ch. 29813, 1955; s. 8, ch. 79-9; s. 234, ch. 79-400; s. 50, ch. 2014-209; s. 75, ch. 2016-10.
618.23 Quo warranto to test validity of corporation.The right of an association claiming to be organized and incorporated and carrying on its business under this chapter to do and to continue its business, may be inquired into by quo warranto at the suit of the Department of Legal Affairs, but not otherwise.
History.s. 26, ch. 14675, 1931; CGL 1936 Supp. 6489(2); ss. 11, 35, ch. 69-106.
618.24 Application of general corporation laws.The provisions of the laws of this state with respect to corporations for profit and all powers and rights thereunder shall apply to associations organized under this chapter, except where such provisions are in conflict with or inconsistent with the express provisions of this chapter.
History.s. 26, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6491; s. 29, ch. 14675, 1931.
618.25 Dissolution.
(1) Any association incorporated under or adopting the provisions of this chapter may be dissolved and its affairs wound up voluntarily by a petition signed by two-thirds of the members or by the holders of two-thirds of the common stock, either in person or by their agent, which petition shall be presented to the circuit judge, who shall direct notice thereof to be published for such time as he or she may judge expedient. After the expiration of the time of such notice, the circuit judge may decree a dissolution and make all necessary orders and decrees for the winding up of its affairs, including the application of its assets toward the satisfaction of the claims of creditors so far as may be and the distribution of any moneys then remaining among its members in proportion to their respective property interests.
(2) Any such association shall continue to be a body corporate for a term of 2 years after the date of the decree or dissolution for the purpose of prosecuting and defending suits and settling its affairs, and the president and directors at the time of its dissolution, and the survivors of them, or such other person as may be appointed by the circuit judge, shall be trustees of such association for that purpose during said term with full power in its name to settle its affairs, collect all sums due it, sell and convey its property, pay its debt as far as may be, and distribute any moneys or property then remaining among those entitled thereto.
History.s. 27, ch. 14675, 1931; CGL 1936 Supp. 6489(3); s. 113, ch. 97-102.
618.26 Conditions under which foreign similar corporation may do business in this state.Any cooperative association with or without capital stock as defined in this chapter heretofore or hereafter organized under the laws of another state shall be allowed to carry on any proper activities, operations and functions in this state upon the filing with the Department of State of a certified copy of its articles of incorporation and the payment of a filing fee of $17.50 in lieu of all franchise or license or corporation taxes as required of associations organized under this chapter, and all contracts which could be made by any association organized under this chapter, made by or with such associations shall be legal and valid and enforceable in this state with all of the remedies set forth in this chapter.
History.s. 25, ch. 14675, 1931; CGL 1936 Supp. 6489(1); ss. 10, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 71, ch. 90-132.
618.27 Use of term “cooperative.”
(1) No person doing business in this state, shall be entitled to use the word “cooperative” as part of its corporate or other business name or title unless it has complied with the provisions of this chapter.
(2) Any person now organized and existing or doing business in this state, and embodying the word “cooperative” as part of its corporate or other business name or title, and which is not organized in compliance with the provisions of this chapter, shall eliminate the word “cooperative” from its said corporate or other business name or title.
History.s. 20, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6485; s. 20, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 7, ch. 22858, 1945.
618.28 This chapter not to affect certain laws.The provisions of this chapter shall not be construed to affect, limit, or in anywise interfere with the rights, powers, or privileges of any corporation or association which exists or which may be hereafter organized under chapter 617 or chapter 619 and laws prior thereto.
History.s. 29, ch. 9300, 1923; CGL 6494; s. 30, ch. 14675, 1931; s. 6, ch. 16879, 1935; s. 2, ch. 80-192.