As Tennesseans cope with repairs and cleanup work following the recent flooding, Secretary of State Tre Hargett warns them to be wary of unlicensed and unregistered businesses offering to provide help.
“Many residents of our state have already suffered substantial losses as a result of the flooding and should not have to deal with additional problems created when repair or cleanup work is improperly or incompletely performed by disreputable business operators,” Secretary Hargett said.
In Tennessee corporations, limited liability companies, and limited liability partnerships must file with the Secretary of State's Office prior to conducting business in the state. To verify whether or not one of these business types is active and in good standing, you may contact us at (615) 741-2286 or perform a search online at: http://tnbear.tn.gov/Ecommerce/FilingSearch.aspx
Businesses that are general partnerships or limited partnerships may file with the Secretary of State's office but are not required to do so prior to transacting business in the state. In addition, sole proprietors are not required to register with the Secretary of State's office in order to transact business in Tennessee.
In Tennessee, home improvement contractors are required to obtain a license from the Department of Commerce & Insurance Contractor Licensing Board. If you are trying to determine whether or not a particular business entity has a contractor's license, please search the website that is provided by the Department of Commerce & Insurance Contractor Licensing Board at http://verify.tn.gov
Questions about insurance issues can be directed to the Department of Commerce and Insurance hotline at 1-800-342-4029. Non-insurance issues can be directed to the department’s consumer affairs hotline at 1-800-342-8385.
“There is no guarantee that businesses that are properly registered and licensed will always do satisfactory work,” Secretary Hargett said. “However, if a business isn’t properly registered and licensed, that is a pretty good reason for a potential customer to look elsewhere for help.”