State officials warn of scam targeting business certificates

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – State officials are warning businesses of a scam related to misleading certification documents.

Secretary of State Tre Hargett’s office said Tuesday that an entity named State Compliance Center is under scrutiny by the Better Business Bureau of Middle Tennessee.

Officials said State Compliance Center requested businesses pay nearly $90 to obtain a Certificate of Existence/Authorization, also known as a Certificate of Good Standing. The request is being mailed out on an official-looking document.

Officials said the standard fee to obtain a Certificate of Existence directly from the Division of Business Services is $20.

Officials said letters being sent by State Compliance Center make it appear as if a Certificate of Existence is required by law. However, one is not required for a company to do business in Tennessee.