I received a notice in the mail this week that said I need to renew my Fictitious Business Name. An addressed envelope and a request for $150 were included. This looked legitimate at first, but there were several clues that it was not. For example, $150 was much higher than the $30 I had originally paid for my Fictitious Business Name (the name of my publishing company).
I called the Contra Costa County Clerk’s office, which confirmed that this is a scam. People search through public records, pull out names of businesses due for renewal in a few months, and send these misleading letters. In Contra Costa County, the real Fictitious Business Name renewal notice costs $30 and is sent by postcard closer to the due date.