Wis. AG files action against seller of deceptive 'corporate minutes' services

By Jessica M. Karmasek | Feb 11, 2013

MADISON, Wis. (Legal Newsline) -- Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says his office has filed a lawsuit against a Michigan-based business over solicitations it sent by mail to state businesses.

On Friday, Van Hollen said he is suing The Mandatory Poster Agency Inc., doing business as Corporate Records Service, and Steven J. Fata, both of Lansing, Mich.

The solicitations offered to prepare corporate meeting minutes and stated the service would help companies comply with state law.

According to the complaint, which was filed in Dane County Circuit Court Friday, the defendants have sent numerous Wisconsin corporations a 2013-Annual Minutes Form, which has the "look and feel" of a government document.

The document states that by filling out the form and sending $125 to Corporate Records Service, the corporation would satisfy its obligations under certain Wisconsin statutes.

However, Wisconsin law does not require a corporation to prepare minutes of its meetings, and even if it did, the minutes form does not request the information that would be necessary to prepare meeting minutes, according to the eight-page complaint.

The complaint goes on to allege that statements in the minutes form, and on the envelope in which it is enclosed, constitute "untrue, deceptive or misleading" statements made with intent to sell a service, in violation of Wis. Stat. ยง 100.18.

The Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection are assisting Van Hollen's office with the matter.

The attorney general is seeking injunctive relief, civil forfeitures and restitution to any and all victims of the fraud.

The case has been assigned to Dane County Circuit Judge Richard Niess.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at jessica@legalnewsline.com.

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