In this Dec. 2, 2020, file photo, Shenna Bellows is seen at the Augusta Civic Center. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine’s secretary of state is warning businesses of a misleading solicitation that is targeting companies by asking them for a fee.

The solicitation is from a group that calls itself “C.F.S.” that sends materials that resemble the Maine Division of Corporations’ annual report form, Secretary of State Shenna Bellows said. The mailings offer to file annual reports for a $185 fee, she said.

Bellows said the solicitation is not recognized by the state and does not come from a state agency.

The 2022 annual report form isn’t even available until January, she said. When it is, an updated form will be available online and corporate entities will have until June 1 to complete the report, Bellows said.

The solicitation is targeting corporations and not-for-profit groups, Bellows said. She said anyone with questions about the annual report or other business filings should contact the state corporations division.