NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has filed a lawsuit against an Albany-based company that allegedly issued thousands of notices designed to look like they were from the New York government.
Compliance Filings LLC allegedly issued solicitations designed to look like official government notices leading businesses to believe that they had to pay over $100 for paperwork falsely labeled as required by state law.
"Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and we cannot afford any scams that defraud them of their hard-earned money," Schneiderman said in Friday's filing. "This office has zero tolerance for scam artists - especially those imitating government offices to prey on working men and women. Our message is clear: those who cheat New York's small businesses will be brought to justice."
The company, which operates as Corporate Records Compliance Office, allegedly sent mailings labeled "Notice of Annual Minutes Compliance" to hundreds of thousands of small New York businesses.
Schneiderman alleges that the notices, including information like a company's incorporation date, said that "failure to comply" could lead the corporation's owners and officers to have personal liability for all debts of the company. The suit alleges that the mailings include a prepared invoice for the company's annual board meeting at a cost of $120.
Approximately 11,000 businesses allegedly mistakenly believed that the notices were sent from the state.
The lawsuit seeks restitution for the businesses involved with Compliance Filings LLC and injunctive relief prohibiting the company and its owner from continuing to operate the business or doing business in the state of New York until they file a $500,000 performance bond.