Tennessee State Seal
Businesses: Beware of Misleading Solicitation
(Published: November 20, 2014)

Secretary of State Tre Hargett is warning Tennessee corporations about a potentially misleading solicitation sent from an organization called the “Tennessee Council for Corporations.” The council, which is not affiliated in any way with the Secretary of State’s office, states in its solicitation that it will prepare annual “corporate consent records” for a corporation for a $125 fee.  Corporate consent records are internal corporate documents that a corporation may choose to prepare, but are not required to be filed with the Secretary of State’s office.  However, the solicitation is similar in appearance to the notice that the Secretary of State’s office distributes to businesses informing them of their obligation to file annual reports.

Because this solicitation appears similar to an official government notice, it has the potential to mislead Tennessee corporations.  Similar misleading correspondence has been sent out by the organizations “Corporate Records Service” and “Annual Business Services,” neither of which are affiliated with governmental entities. 

Secretary Hargett said: “I encourage Tennessee businesses to be cautious when providing private and confidential information, including credit card information, because there are several organizations sending these misleading letters.” 

Businesses can call the Secretary of State’s Business Services Division at (615) 741-2286 to help determine the source of correspondence they may receive.   The Secretary of State’s website also has a user-friendly online annual report filing system for businesses, which can be accessed at https://tnbear.tn.gov/Ecommerce/AnnualReportInstr.aspx.