Secretary of State offers online filing of corporate reports
Secretary of State Donetta Davidson is saving mountain folks a trip to Denver. With her new electronic reporting format, businesses can now file corporate reports online.
The reports were required every two years and are now required annually.
To encourage people to use online filing, Davidson has a special offer good through the end of this month.
Reports for domestic, delinquent and foreign businesses and nonprofits can be filed for a whopping 25 cents through April. Normally, domestic businesses pay $25 to file a report in person or through the mail. The online charge is $10.
In addition to reducing the load on her staff, online filing will save the taxpayers $5 million, Davidson said.
Davidson was in Glenwood Springs Wednesday for a regional meeting of county clerks.
The savings “is based on the number of filings we get if you pay $10 per year,” Davidson said. “It’s a great deal.”
To file, a business or nonprofit must pay with either a credit card or a pre-paid account set up with the Secretary of State’s office in advance.
Online filing takes place in “real” time. The Secretary of State’s computer verifies the payment and if it’s accepted, automatically issues a certificate of good standing.
Reports can be filed up to two months ahead of time. During the special promotion period, businesses can file for May and June, Davidson said.
In addition, delinquent fees will be waived during the promotion period.
Since last fall, when online filing first became available, its popularity has grown. In March the Secretary of State’s website had 80,000 “hits” or page viewings.
“People are using it, and the more people use it the more it solves our problem” of understaffing, Davidson said.
Davidson estimated her office has over 600,000 businesses on file. Between 2001 and 2002, it took in over 70,000 new businesses.
“We can’t keep up with it,” she said.
Also on the website, people can check to see if their business or nonprofit is currently in good standing with the state or if it is delinquent. And they can check other businesses as well, Davidson said.
About 50 percent of those who file financial reports with the Secretary of State’s office file online, Davidson said. She hopes to achieve that same rate for corporate filing.
“My goal is to bring business closer to the state office. Glenwood Springs should be able to do business as easily as Denver,” she said.
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