Check, Please

I own and operate a couple of websites. All are under the umbrella of my company, Imagine Media LLC. My advertisers usually make out their checks to Imagine Media, but last month, an advertiser made a check out to one of my website names, CharterWave.

My bank told me that in order to cash this check, I had to file a Registration of Alternate Name form with the State of New Jersey. The form asked me for my company’s Formation Date, so I looked at my state business certificate. It listed both an Effective Date and an Incorporation Date, but no Formation Date. However, both the Effective Date and the Incorporation Date were in July 2005, a few days apart. I figured this was a pretty good clue that for paperwork purposes, my company’s Formation Date was July 2005.

So I wrote July 2005 on the form, which was promptly returned to me because it lacked the specific day. Apparently, I had to divine for this particular form that one department within the N.J. Division of Revenue uses the term Formation Date to mean the same thing that another department calls the Effective Date.

To learn this golden nugget required 75 minutes of my time, a few choice remarks from a state worker who called me vulgar because I said I didn’t know “what the hell” she was talking about, and a supervisor who put me on hold three separate times to get more information before he could definitively tell me what I needed to do.

All so that I can cash a check from one of my website sponsors.

And people wonder why businesses have been fleeing the State of New Jersey for the better part of a decade. It isn’t just the high taxes. It’s the migraines.

One comment

  1. I don’t think bureaucrats are any different in N.J., Florida, Arizona or Afghanistan. At least you got an answer. Hopefully you didn’t have to kneecap someone first.

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