Business, Crime

Maryland businesses receiving fake “2020 Certificate of Good Standing Request Form” letter; same scam as in 2019

BALTIMORE, MD—An updated version of a common scam targeting business owners is once again making the rounds.

The Office of the Attorney General has received information that businesses in Maryland have been receiving a letter entitled “2020 Certificate of Good Standing Request Form” that requests a fee in exchange for a letter of good standing with an “official seal of the Secretary of State.” This letter is a scame. This same scam letter was circulated in late 2019.

The scam letter asks the recipient to send a check or money order to an entity named “MD Certificate Service” in Annapolis, MD in exchange for an “elective Maryland Certificate of Good Standing.”

The letter goes to great lengths to look official with a “document number” and a barcode, and includes a customer service phone number of 1-855-222-3322.

Some business entities in Maryland are required to have a certificate of good standing, but not from the Secretary of State. An official certificate of good standing is available from the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation for a nominal fee.

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If you receive this scam letter, do NOT send them any money. You can report the letter to the Maryland Secretary of State, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov, or the United States Postal Inspection Service at www.uspis.gov or 1-877-876-2455.

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