Indiana business owners should be wary of a misleading letter offering assistance in filing state paperwork.
Secretary of State Connie Lawson announced Thursday that some Indiana businesses have received a deceptive letter that may appear to come from the office’s Business Services Division.
The letter is attempting to solicit Indiana business owners. It is not from the Secretary of State’s office.
The letter informs the business that Indiana law requires a business entity report to be filed every two years, and if it is not filed there may be penalties.
In the middle of the page, it says the letter is from a private business that will assist in filing your business entity report for you. While it is legal for businesses to make this offering, many business owners think complying with the letter is mandatory.
Secretary Lawson is concerned businesses may be confused by the letter and may believe responding to it substitutes the need for filing a business entity report, which is required by state law.
Businesses operating in Indiana can securely file their business entity report online at INBiz.in.gov. There is a $10 charge for non-profits to file on INBiz and a $20 charge for for-profits.
The deceptive letter charges $107 to file the report for you.
Businesses wishing to check the validity of any mailing from the Indiana Secretary of State should contact the INBiz help deskat firstname.lastname@example.org or (317) 234-9768.
To view a copy of the deceptive letter and an example of an official reminder from the Secretary of State, click here.