State-licensed companies should be on the lookout for fraudulent communications suggesting that a filing or payment is required from them in order to remain in good standing with various secretaries of state. For example, the Connecticut attorney general issued a press release alerting Connecticut companies to such a communication from a business identifying itself as CT Certificate Service. The communication erroneously notes that Connecticut companies must pay a fee of $112.50 to CT Certificate Service to obtain a “Connecticut Certificate of Existence” to evidence that they are in compliance with state requirements. However, a certificate of existence is an optional document in Connecticut. Also, if one is needed, it can be requested electronically from the Connecticut secretary of state for a fee. We have seen the same communication directed to companies that are foreign qualified in Montana and Utah from businesses identifying themselves as MT Certificate Service and UT Certificate Service, respectively.
In another example, a business identifying itself as Nevada Legal News sent a notice to limited liability companies stating that they are required to publish an annual statement and charging $30 to do so. However, this requirement does not apply to limited liability companies as noted under the Foreign Corporation Publication Requirements on the Nevada secretary of state website.
Companies need to remain on alert for such fraudulent communications. We suggest that any company that receives such a communication submit a complaint to the applicable state attorney general.