Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today alerted New York State business owners of a scam targeting corporations. Businesses are receiving misleading notifications through the mail advising them of their corporate responsibilities and requesting a processing fee for providing a service that they are led to believe is required by New York State law.
"Business owners should be vigilant of scams like this that use deceptive tactics to get them to pay unnecessary fees," Governor Cuomo said. "My administration will not tolerate anyone who tries to swindle New York's businesses, and I urge any companies that receive these notices to report them to the State's Division of Consumer Protection. We will work aggressively with law enforcement agencies to prosecute any instances of fraud against New York businesses."
The document, titled 2014 Annual Corporate Minutes, selectively quotes sections of New York's Business Corporation Law regarding a corporation's obligations to hold annual corporate meetings and maintain corporate records. The official-looking document asks the recipient to send $125 to the "Dept. of Business and Compliance" to fulfill their corporate obligations under New York State law.
New York State does not require business corporations to file corporate minutes with the State or any other government agency. The only document a business corporation must routinely file with the New York Department of State after registering a corporation is a biennial statement.
Businesses that have received these offers should ignore the solicitation and report fraudulent activity to the Department of State's Division of Consumer Protection at 518-474-8583 or www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection. The Department will work closely with law-enforcement authorities to refer complaints and to assist in the prosecution of any act of fraud committed by these scammers.
To obtain information on corporate filing requirements visit the Department of State's Division of Corporations at www.dos.ny.gov/corps.