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Minnesota Office of the Secretary of State

Frequently Asked Questions

Listed below are all FAQs. To select a specific topic click on the down arrow under "Please Choose a Category."

How and where do I file UCC documents?
What is the fee for being a MBLS Registered User?
Do I need to register to file online?
How will I pay for my online filings and orders?
How long will my transactions be retained in the transaction history?
What are the benefits of being a MBLS Registered User?
How do I become a MBLS Registered User?
What is the logic used for an online secured search?
Is the debtor signature required for UCC filings?
How long is my filing active?
Does a UCC-3 Termination change the status of a UCC filing?
How do I know you have received and filed our document?
How do I file my business document?
Can I order an original Certificate of Incorporation?
How do I place an order for business copies or certificates?
How many presidential electors does Minnesota have? What determines this number?
How does a person become a candidate to be chosen as a presidential elector in Minnesota?
What are the qualifications to serve as a presidential elector in Minnesota?
Do the names of the presidential elector candidates appear on the general election ballot?
Are the presidential elector candidates required to receive a majority of the votes cast (50%) in Minnesota?
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Q: How and where do I file UCC documents?
A:

UCC documents can be filed online or by submitting the national UCC form to the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State.

Q: What is the fee for being a MBLS Registered User?
A:
There is no fee to be a registered user.
Q: Do I need to register to file online?
A:
User registration will be required for online filings.
Q: How will I pay for my online filings and orders?
A:
For security reasons, payment must be made by credit card. We currently accept Visa, MasterCard or Discover. Client Accounts and Automatic Clearing House (ACH) will no longer be available for payment options. 
Q: How long will my transactions be retained in the transaction history?
A:
The transaction history retains online filings and orders up to 90 days.
Q: What are the benefits of being a MBLS Registered User?
A:
Ability to file business filings and UCC, Tax Liens and CNS filings and orders online. Upon signing in, delivery information will auto-fill and a transaction history will display previous online filings and orders.
Q: How do I become a MBLS Registered User?
A:
Follow the steps to register on the MBLS Portal.
Q: What is the logic used for an online secured search?
A:
See the Secured Search Logic Implementation Guide for further information.
Q: Is the debtor signature required for UCC filings?
A:
Minnesota Statutes contain no signature requirements.
Q: How long is my filing active?
A:
A financing statement is active for five years, statutory agricultural lien for five years, transmitting utility is perpetual, Public Finance Lien is thirty years and Manufactured Home Lien is 30 years. A continuation will extend the duration of the filing for an additional 5 years.
Q: Does a UCC-3 Termination change the status of a UCC filing?
A:
No, the UCC-3 Termination does not change the status of a filing in the Central Filing System. The UCC filing remains in the active database until it's lapsed.
Q: How do I know you have received and filed our document?
A:
Two ways: 1) We will return an acknowledgement copy to you that will be filed stamped, or 2) You may request a UCC-11.  Click on the UCC-11 National form and send in your completed request.
Q: How do I file my business document?
A:

File your business document online.   
Visa, Mastercard and Discover are acceptable payment methods.   

You may also file In-Person or Mail your documents to:
Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
Saint Paul,  MN 55103
(Staffed 8:00 - 4:00, Monday - Friday, excluding holidays)
Cash or Check are acceptable payment methods.

Q: Can I order an original Certificate of Incorporation?
A:
No, but a copy is retained by this office. You can obtain a copy of the Certificate of Incorporation by selecting one of the options listed in: "How do I place an order for Business Copies or Certificates?"
Q: How do I place an order for business copies or certificates?
A:
We provide four options to obtain business copies and certificates:
  1. Online Services:  Order Business Certificate or Copies Online.  Visa, MasterCard or Discover is accepted for payment.  There is a $10.00 service fee in addition to the certificate or copy fee.
  2. Walk-In Service:  Processed while you wait.  
  3. Mail:  Complete the certificate and copy request form and include a check with the applicable fee payable to the MN Secretary of State.

Mail or Walk-In Service:
Minnesota Secretary of State
Attn:  Certification
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
Saint Paul,  MN 55103-2141
(Staffed 8:00 - 4:00, Monday - Friday, excluding holidays)

Business Certificate and Copy Fee Schedule

Q: How many presidential electors does Minnesota have? What determines this number?
A:
Minnesota currently has 10 presidential electors. Article 2, Section 1, Clause 2 of the Constitution of the United States provides that each state appoints a number of electors equal to the number of Senators and Representatives to which each state is entitled in Congress. Since Minnesota currently has eight U.S. Representatives and two U.S. Senators, the state is entitled to 10 electors. The number of electors can change after each decennial census when the number of U.S. Representatives elected by each state can change due to shifts in population.
Q: How does a person become a candidate to be chosen as a presidential elector in Minnesota?
A:

Major political parties: Minnesota's major political parties (currently the Independence, Republican, and Democratic-Farmer-Labor parties) nominate candidates for presidential elector by delegate conventions called and held under the supervision of the party‚Äôs state central committee. The state chair of a major party must certify to the Secretary of State the names of the persons nominated as presidential electors and the names of the party candidates for president and vice-president on or before the day of the primary. Minnesota Statutes 208.03

Minor political parties: A minor political party may nominate candidates for presidential elector by circulating a petition. The petition must list the names of the presidential elector candidates and the names of the candidates for president and vice-president. This petition must be signed by at least 2,000 individuals eligible to vote in Minnesota. Candidates for presidential elector must file their petitions on or before the day of the primary. Minnesota Statutes 204B.07, 204B.08, and 204B.09. In 2012, the Libertarian, Socialist Workers, Constitution, Constitutional Government, Green, Grassroots, Socialism & Liberation, and Justice parties filed petitions for presidential electors and candidates for president and vice president to be placed on the general election ballot.

Write-in candidates: An individual may file a "written request by write-in candidates for federal and state office." This form requests that all write-in votes cast for the candidate be counted. A write-in candidate for president must also state the name of at least one, but no more than ten, candidates for presidential electors. Minnesota Statutes 204B.09, and 208.04.

Q: What are the qualifications to serve as a presidential elector in Minnesota?
A:

The qualifications are set forth in the Constitution of the United States. Article 2, Section 1, Clause 2 provides that "no Senator or Representative, or person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector."

Section 3 of the 14th Amendment also states that "No person shall be...elector of President or Vice-President...who, having previously taken an oath...to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability."

Q: Do the names of the presidential elector candidates appear on the general election ballot?
A:
No. The names of the presidential and vice-presidential candidates appear on the ballot, but not the names of presidential elector candidates. Minnesota Statutes 208.04
Q: Are the presidential elector candidates required to receive a majority of the votes cast (50%) in Minnesota?
A:
No. The presidential electors pledged to support the presidential and vice-presidential ticket that receives the most votes in Minnesota are certified as the official presidential electors for Minnesota. The winning slate of electors is only required to receive more votes in Minnesota than any other slate of electors. A majority (50% plus one vote) is not required for an elector to be elected.
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