Do you need to conduct a corporate asset search? If you have a judgment against someone who owns an LLC or against a corporation as a whole, it’s important to look for hidden assets within the debtor’s company. An LLC and its owner are separate entities. If you have a lawsuit against a person that owns an LLC, it’s imperative to establish the connection to prove their involvement.
Piercing the corporate veil
Piercing the corporate veil means holding a company’s directors, officers, or shareholders personally liable for the company’s debts or actions. If a creditor can pierce the corporate veil and hold anyone else but the corporation legally responsible for a corporation’s debts, then it can recover from those individuals. Why is that important? To a creditor seeking to collect a claim against an LLC or corporation, piercing the corporate veil provides an additional way to collect from someone other than the business. To pierce the corporate veil, you’d have to show some sort of wrongdoing on behalf of those individuals — fraud or concealment of corporate affairs.
Connecting the debtor to the LLC or corporation
In order to collect on a judgment, you must be able to prove your case by connecting the debtor to the company. When you’re dealing with an LLC or Corporation, things can get pretty tricky. To remedy this situation, it is imperative that you begin your search with a comprehensive database search of the Secretary of State’s records. Each state has its own database which holds information such as names, DBAs (doing business as), incorporation documents, officer names, and more depending on your state.
Types of corporate assets
A corporation can hold assets just like any other individual or organization. Typically the asset classes are similar, but corporate asset searches will also have a large focus on intellectual and intangible assets. One of the most valuable intangible assets to a corporation is its website or domain name. If you’re conducting a corporate asset search, make sure that you and your investigator are not only looking for things like property and bank accounts, but also websites, domain names, logos, music, and any other online intellectual-type property.
Pre-litigation planning is key to making sure you don’t miss any practical means of recovery. Flush out hidden assets by conducting thorough searches of financial records. When you discover that the defendant owns an LLC, you may be able to sue the company. When you do, it can help to know who will be liable for the debt. By seeking the services of a private investigation agency that specializes in corporate asset search, you’ll be one step ahead of other plaintiffs and make sure you have a strong case against your debtor.
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