Jesse White warns businesses of statewide corporate scam

Online Staff Report

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White (D) is warning businesses to beware of a scam targeting Illinois corporations.

A firm called Corporate Records Service is contacting Illinois businesses in an attempt to collect a $125 fee to fill out a corporation’s “Annual Minutes Records Form.” The Illinois Business Corporation Act does not require corporations to file a “Minutes Records Form” or pay such a fee with the state or any private entity.

The problem is that the form this bogus firm is sending out looks similar to our Secretary of State’s annual report form,” White said. “We are concerned that companies are filing the form and paying the $125 because they believe they are filing their annual report with us, as required by law.”

Although the bogus notice states that the fee must be paid by Sept. 21, 2012, there is no fee due to the state for that purpose. The only fee that corporations must pay is the fee that is paid with their annual report. Illinois corporations should be on the alert for this and other similar attempts to defraud them.

The Secretary of State police and Illinois Attorney General’s Office are investigating this deceptive business practice.

White is recommending that corporations do not reply to the solicitation.

If a business has questions or wants to report that they have been a victim of the scam, contact the Secretary of State’s Office at (312) 814-2201.

Posted Sept. 6, 2012

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