One of the most common corporate services utilized by clients is the filing of annual reports. With few exceptions, states require by law that companies (mostly Corporations and LLCs) file an annual report with the Secretary of State's office, or equivalent agency. Annual reports are often filed annually, although some states have semi-annual filing requirements while a few maintain specific time-frame requirements for the filing of these reports. Additionally, most states require the payment of a statutory fee and/or tax fee at the time of filing. The fee amounts in many states are fixed amounts, while other states may use a calculation method typically based on stock to determine the amount of fees due to the state. Failure to file annual reports by the required deadlines often results in additional financial penalties.
The main purpose of filing annual reports is to provide the states with accurate and current company information for both state record-keeping purposes and for public record access. Although the specific information requested on annual report filings varies state by state, most typically include:
It is not uncommon for companies to overlook the filing of annual reports considering their daily focus is on the nature of their business activities itself. In an effort to remind companies of these annual report filings, some states will mail the annual report form or a reminder notice to the company or the registered agent. However, this courtesy has become less common over the recent years. In fact, some states have done away with paper annual report filings altogether and require the company to e-file the annual report.
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