BOISE — Attorney General Lawrence Wasden and Secretary of State Lawerence Denney are alerting Idaho business owners to a deceptive and misleading mailing. The mailing is from a company called ID Certificate Service and is a request form for a 2020 certificate of existence.

Certificates of existence are issued by the secretary of state to requesting businesses who want to show customers or others that they are properly registered to do business in Idaho. The mailing was not authorized by the secretary of state nor is the sender affiliated with the state in any way. Business owners are not required by the state to purchase a certificate of existence, and any certificates sold by ID Certificate Service are not official.

“It is beyond unfortunate that companies attempt to deceive and mislead people in pursuit of illegitimate profit,” Denney says. “But nonetheless these scams persist. We wish to remind Idaho business owners that if at any time you question the authenticity of a request for business information or a statement requesting payment for a service, please contact our office or the Idaho attorney general.”

The mailer offers the unofficial certificate for $73.50. A legitimate certificate through the secretary of state’s office is $10.

“Idaho business owners are facing challenging enough times as it is,” Wasden says. “They don’t need anyone preying on them with less-than-genuine offerings. I encourage Idahoans who receive this mailer to ignore it.”

An example of the mailer is available here.

The secretary of state’s office can be reached by calling 208-334-2301. Business owners can reach the attorney general’s Consumer Protection Division at 208-334-2424 or toll-free at 1-800-432-3545.