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Helping Businesses in Alabama


October 14, 2016 - MONTGOMERY - Under the direction of Secretary John Merrill the Secretary of State’s Office has worked to more expeditiously process the large volume of business filings coming in from throughout Alabama.  This new process will better serve Alabama’s businesses and strengthen business development in the state.

“During my time working to earn the People of Alabama’s trust to serve as their 53rd Secretary of State, I was made aware that when someone wanted to form a new business in the state, it would take 5 to 7 months or longer from the time the Secretary of State’s Office received certain business filings for them to be placed in the online state business filings database available to the public, banks and the business community.  After a period of better understanding the process, it became apparent that a dramatic restructuring, including new leadership as well as the establishment of certain financial controls and employee accountability measures, was necessary to end this continuous cycle of failing to meet the highest expectations of service to business in Alabama,” Secretary Merrill said.

Following completion of Secretary Merrill’s internal restructuring efforts, the waiting period for filings to be completed dropped and, for the past two months of July and August, recently reached for the first time the goal of completely handling from start to finish the processing of the incoming filings to no later than the next business day. 

“Once our team met this new and high standard they were then reminded that we may have tied the game but the clock is still ticking. I have instructed our team to communicate with each other at the end of each week and the beginning of the succeeding week to ensure that we stay on track,” Merrill said.

Secretary Merrill continually emphasizes to the staff that it is our duty as public servants to be a resource to new and existing businesses.  Resolving this issue is one of many changes made by Secretary Merrill during his administration.