Bryan Cohen Sep. 9, 2013, 5:35pm

MADISON, Wis. (Legal Newsline) - Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced a consent judgment Thursday against Mandatory Poster Agency Inc. and its principal to resolve allegations of deceptive solicitation.

The Lansing-Mich.-based Mandatory Poster Agency, doing business as Corporate Records Service, allegedly sent solicitations to 72,860 Wisconsin corporations by direct mail attempting to mislead businesses into sending it a $125 payment. The solicitation allegedly gave the impression that it was a government document when it was not. Wisconsin law prohibits untrue, deceptive and misleading statements made to the public for inducting sale of services or goods.

"This judgment sends a strong signal that those who solicit business in Wisconsin must do so honestly," Van Hollen said. "Engaging in deception to sell goods and services not only harms consumers, but is unfair to law-abiding competitors. I am pleased we will be able to return all of the money paid by Wisconsin businesses because of this scheme."

Under the terms of the judgment, Mandatory Poster Agency and Steven Fata must pay $340,000, including $183,500 in consumer restitution, attorney fees and costs and $156,500 in civil forfeitures and court assessments. The judgment also imposes a permanent injunction against the defendants, forcing them to making changes to their solicitation to protect consumers from being misled going forward.

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