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Secretary of State Griswold alerts Colorado businesses of misleading solicitations posing as government

 

Last updated 5/13/2020 at 9:33am



The Colorado Secretary of State’s office is again alerting small business owners about potentially misleading notices requesting an extra fee from a third party to file business documents. In recent days, the Secretary of State’s office has received numerous reports of third parties sending deceptive and misleading solicitations to Colorado businesses. The Colorado Secretary of State maintains an easy-to-use online filing system for businesses, and use of a third party to complete filings is not required.

“During this time when many small businesses are struggling, third parties have been sending out solicitations asking for unnecessary fees to file business reports with our office,” said Secretary Jena Griswold. “The Colorado Secretary of State’s office takes pride in having an easy-to-use and affordable business filing system, which is why we are alerting business owners about these dubious solicitations.”

The newest versions of these solicitations ask businesses to pay a fee of $110 to file their yearly periodic report with the Secretary of State’s office. It is important for businesses to know that their yearly periodic report can be filed online at the Secretary of State’s website for only $10. Colorado continues to be one of the lowest business filing fee states in the nation.

Other misleading solicitations may:

• Appear similar to a government form.

• Cite specific Colorado statutes.

• Contain your business entity’s actual business ID number and date of formation, as reflected in the Secretary of State’s business records.

• Contain a “Customer ID Number” that does not match a number given to you by a State or Federal Agency.

• Contain a warning to make sure that the form’s instructions are followed exactly when completing the form.

• Require a fee.

• Contain a due date for your response.

• Offer to file a “Statement Curing Delinquency” or “Periodic Report.”

Please be advised that the Colorado Secretary of State’s office does not send these solicitations. A sample of the latest misleading notice can be found here. The Secretary of State’s office does not mail out business filing forms, and compliance with these notices is not required.

All business filings are filed online on our website. Business owners can find instructions to easily and directly file business forms on the Secretary of State’s website under the Business Organizations heading.

In order to receive advance notice of when Periodic Reports, Trademark renewals, or Trade Name renewals are due, business owners can sign up online for free email notifications. Additionally, business owners can visit http://www.sos.state.co.us to verify their business status, file a form or obtain a free certification. The Secretary of State posts alerts and notices about misleading filings here: https://www.sos.state.co.us/pubs/business/alert_notices.html.

 

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