The state of Alabama makes it relatively simple to look up business information through the website of the Secretary of State. Below we’ll walk through the steps for doing this, and show you some additional resources you might not know about.
There are any number of reasons you might need this information. It’s absolutely critical when performing due diligence and for Know Your Client (KYC) purposes. If you’re only performing these kinds of searches occasionally, Alabama’s search portal allows you to find the information you’re looking for quickly and easily. If you’re searching records like these in high numbers, there are some tools you’ll want to know about, but we’ll come back to that in just a moment.
You can find the Business Entity Records search page here. The landing page looks like this:
As you can see, there’s a separate link for each type of search that you might wish to perform. You can choose to search by name, Entity Number, the name of an Officer, Agent, or Incorporator, the month and year a business was formed (the specific month, not a range), the specific date it was registered, or by the reservation ID number.
Clicking on any of the search links opens a new browser tab with that search interface. The name search page looks like this:
The search interface is simple and clean. When you enter all or part of the name, you can limit your results to businesses formed in a specific county, or with a principal address in a specific city. Under ‘Type’, there are dozens of options, all related to the legal structure of the business. The ‘Status’ menu allows you to restrict your results to companies currently in existence, ones that have been consolidated, merged, withdrawn, and so forth.
Performing the search brings you to the results page, which looks like this:
The results are sorted by company name in alphabetical order by default. Clicking on the column headers allows you to reverse the search order, and to sort by the other fields.
On the results page, you’ll see each company’s name and ID number, the city in which it’s located, the type of business, and its status (all ‘Exists’ here, as I chose to limit the search to only those).
Clicking on the name or ID for any of the records will bring you to the details page for that business. All of the information for each business is arranged vertically on the same page, so let’s look at the top half of the page first:
Here, you can see more information about the business if it was provided to the office, including name and contact information for the Registered Agent, the date the company was formed, and some information about the capital in the business.
On the lower half of the page, you’ll find some additional information:
The Incorporator’s name and address are there if they’ve been provided, plus links to documents. Documents are available to purchase. You can view the Annual Reports for the business summarized in an online form, which looks like this:
Need More Information, More Quickly?
Alabama offers a reasonable amount of business information at no cost, and their search interface makes the process relatively smooth and simple for each search. If you need to search for hundreds – or even thousands – of these records each month, though, this would quickly consume a lot of time. Furthermore, Secretary of State data is different from one state to another, so combining and integrating data from multiple states is complex.
Cobalt Intelligence gives you the ability to quickly access Secretary of State business data from Alabama and all other states via API. If you’re looking for a solution that your engineering team can implement, try it here and let us show you how we can help. If you’re technically minded, watch this short video to see the more advanced features in action.