Search for Business Records in Alaska
Business Records in Alaska
Certain business records are matters of public record, including records documenting the formation of a corporation, and filed documents demonstrating business licenses. Therefore, private citizens, even if they are not involved in the business, are entitled to access records. In Alaska, these documents are kept by the Alaska Secretary of State.
What Records Are Maintained by the Alaska Secretary of State?
There are number of forms a business may elect to take. Perhaps the best known business format is the corporation, which is viewed as a separate legal entity from its owners, founders, directors and officers. The State of Alaska also permits businesses to take the form of a limited liability company, or LLC, which combines certain advantages of a corporation with other advantages of a partnership. When businesses incorporate or become a limited liability company, the business must provide notice of the formation of the new entity. In Alaska, this notice is filed with the Alaska Secretary of State.
Businesses may also register or reserve a business name in Alaska. This means that a business gives notice of the name to the Alaska Secretary of State so that when others search the Secretary of State records to determine whether the name is available, they will learn that the name is already in use and claimed by another company.
Out-of-state corporations are also able to register with the Alaska Secretary of State in anticipation of doing business in the State of Alaska.
Why Would a Business Not Have Documents On File?
Not all businesses are incorporated. Sometimes individuals own private businesses which they call a “sole proprietorship,” and these businesses are not registered with the Secretary of State. Also, a business may operate under a special business name, or trade name, but this does not necessarily indicate that the business is incorporated.
Additionally, it should be remembered that businesses often do not incorporate in the same state where their offices are located. Sometimes, business elect to incorporate in a different state to take advantage of certain laws. If you suspect this is the case, the State of Delaware would be a good place to begin your search, since many businesses consider Delaware’s laws to be most advantageous to businesses.
How Can I Search for Records Maintained by the Alaska Secretary of State?
For businesses that have been incorporated in the State of Alaska, documentation can be searched both in person and online. The Corporations Section of the Alaska Secretary of State may be visited at 333 West Willoughby Avenue, 9th Floor, Juneau, Alaska.
To view the business records maintained in Alaska, it will be necessary to visit the Alaska Secretary of State’s website at www.commerce.state.ak.us/occ. From the home page, viewers may select the option “Search Corporations Database” under the listing “Corporations.” This selection will take viewers to a page where they may opt to search the database by entity name, entity number, officer name, or by registered agent. Searchers may also verify a corporate certificate of file their own business documents from this page. Choosing to search by any of the presented options will take searchers to a page where they may input the search criteria and then view the search results. If more than one corporation matches the criteria, the searchers will be presented with a list of results in blue. Each blue name is a clickable link that will take searchers to additional information about that corporation, including the name and type of entity, the entity number, whether or not the entity is active and in good standing, the date of incorporation, the address of the principal office, the mailing address, the registered agent, and the identities of officers and directors.
Searchers looking for information about business licenses held in Alaska may select the option “Search Business Licenses” under the listing “Business Licensing” on the homepage. The option will take viewers to a page where they may first review some basic information about license searches, and then select the button marked “Begin Search” at the bottom of the page. Searchers will then be presented the opportunity to choose the type of business searched for, or the general category “All Business,” and then proceed to a page where additional information such as the business name, address and other information may be inputted to view license information matching those criteria.
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