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I got a job offer from a company, and looked them up online at the registrar and their status is "not in good standing." Should this be a factor in deciding whether to work for them?

  • How is this a question about the law? – BlueDogRanch Sep 5 '17 at 14:51
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it belongs on workplace.stackexchange.com – BlueDogRanch Sep 5 '17 at 14:53
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    Well, one of the reasons stated on the site was labor issues, so I was trying to find out if this would be enough of a warning for me not to accept the position; target audience being the employment attorneys. – maverick Sep 5 '17 at 14:56
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    When you say you looked them up online, what registrar are you referring to? – user13424 Sep 5 '17 at 19:49
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is not a question about law. – Nij Sep 11 '17 at 5:35
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This has very little legal effect. It means that someone forgot to update their annual registration and pay the fee and could be resolved in half an hour with a small late fee payment. It is a sign of slight sloppiness, but is only sometimes evidence of something more serious.

For example, if a company moves to a new location without remembering to inform the Secretary of State, it might not get the annual report notice and thus fail to file. And, a company rarely has an occasion to double check that it is in good standing.

Usually, the only legal consequence is that the company can't commence a lawsuit without bringing itself into good standing and that another company can steal its business name (if it can do so without violating a common law trademark arising from use of the name). It does not significantly change the rights of parties dealing with the company in terms of property ownership, contract rights, etc.

This said, closer scrutiny than a company without that issue might be in order and the fact that you are checking at all means that there might have been other reasons apart from this fact to be concerned.

  • Thanks. I initially went to the site looking for the registered agent, but I only see a record for resident agent. Do you know if they are the same? I just want to ensure the contract I have with them is valid given that they modified a couple of items for me. – maverick Sep 5 '17 at 15:53
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    They are the same. – ohwilleke Sep 5 '17 at 15:54
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    Are there other potential reasons a company might not be in good standing, or could be unable to gain good standing, aside from just not paying the fee? For instance, could a company be not in good standing due to something more serious and/or nefarious? Or is it literally just a matter of being up-to-date on your paperwork and fees? I get that it’s usually just a logistical issue, but I wonder if there could be a possibility, however slim, of something more serious. Whether or not such a possibility exists would be a good addition to this answer. – KRyan Sep 5 '17 at 18:53
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    @KRyan No. There are no other reasons that they would not be in good standing. The scenario you are worried about is one whether not just this, but all of its obligations are being disregarded (e.g. it also isn't paying its employees on time, isn't filing tax returns, isn't keeping accounting records, etc.) and this is just one issue among many, rather than the quite innocuous issue it would be standing alone. None of those other issues would deprive it of good standing, but companies that are in organizational disarray rarely remember to update their annual reports. – ohwilleke Sep 5 '17 at 19:12
  • OK, fair enough. I think that could be a little more clear; maybe instead of “it basically means” say something like “it only means” in the beginning? The basically seems to imply that maybe there is a little more to it. – KRyan Sep 5 '17 at 19:14

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