Tristar Investigation has a 30 year history of conducting investigations for the trail bar. When you are prosecuting a case job one is to make sure you have correctly identified the opposing parties. In instances where this involves a business entity, identifying the correct business can sometimes be murky. This is where our skills and experience in identifying the correct business entity come into play.

Need to Identify a Business or Defendant?

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Frequently Asked Questions

I need to find out who owns a business or company
If you are involved in a legal case which involves a business the first step is often to find out who owns that business or company. There are several possible ways in which a business is owned, the most common of which is a sole proprietorship, those that are owned by an individual. There are also many types of partnerships, the two most common are general partnerships and limited partnerships. Finally there are those that are incorporated, and there are also many types of corporations, some held privately and some held publicly (those on the stock market.
In most states, including California, if a business is a sole proprietorship and the name of the business is other than the exact name of the owner, the owner needs to file a Fictitious Business Name Statement (FBN) in the county where the business is located. These are also referred to as DBA’s, which stands for “Doing Business As.” These FBN’s must be published as a legal notice in a local newspaper and in general must be renewed every five years.
There are other intricate details as to how businesses are owned and registered. If you are having trouble identifying the owner of a business or corporation, hiring a private investigator to sort out the details is the best course of action. Not all businesses follow the letter of the law in regard to registration. In other cases the legal maze of ownership of parent corporations and sub-corporations can present problems. Experienced investigators know how to untangle these webs of data trails and get to the bottom of a business ownership.
I need to know if a business is incorporated
In California and most other states if a business is either a corporation or partnership, these must be registered with the Secretary of State in the state where the business is located. If the corporation is out of state and doing business in California, then the out of state of corporation must also register with the local Secretary of State as a “Foreign Corporation.”

If you are having trouble identifying a business or corporation then hiring a private investigator is your next step. You may have the wrong name or an inaccurate spelling of the business. In some cases there are multiple corporations with the same name. In other cases there may be both corporate and partnership filings with the same name or names.

Not all businesses in other states properly comply with the requirement to file as a “Foreign Corporation” when doing business in another state. Many corporations file in Delaware because the laws there favor corporations and others sometime file in Nevada where there is no state income tax. Private eyes have the experience and resources to solve these complex ownership issues.

I need to know if a business has proper licensing
Hiring a private investigator is the best way to find out if a business is properly licensed. Business licenses in general are issued by the city in which a business operates. They are usually connected to the local taxation department by the city or county. There are different types of business licenses, however having a local business license does not guarantee that the business is properly registered to do business on the county or state level.

In many states including California there is a state agency called the Department of Consumer Affairs. These agencies regulate and license everything from mechanics, to hair dressers to accounts to doctors and private investigators. There are dozens of other types of businesses they regulate and anyone performing any of the regulated types of businesses needs to have a current license issued by the Department of Consumer Affairs agency to be properly licensed.

Businesses that conduct commerce that are covered by the state sales tax in California tax must register with the State Board of Equalization. Businesses that sell or serve alcoholic beverages must be licensed by the Alcoholic Beverage Control. Businesses that do business in a state must also file state income taxes, in California the agency that collects such taxes is called the Franchise Tax Board. An experienced investigator can help you find out if the business you are focusing on is properly licensed.

I need to know who the agent for service of process is for a corporation
When a business incorporates they are required to designate a person or company as the “agent for service of process” with the Secretary of State. If someone wants to bring legal action against the corporation the agent for process is the entity who is served the legal papers. If you are having trouble finding the agent for service of process your next step is to hire a private investigator to find out who to serve.

In some cases you may have the wrong name of the corporation. An investigator can conduct research to identify the correct name. In other cases the corporation may no longer be in business and in these cases the investigator will track down the principles of the defunct business.

There are also times when the agent for service of process is no longer at the address specified with the Secretary of State. Private eyes are experienced in tracking these people to their current location or determining who the correct agent for service of process is.

I need to find who are the partners of a Limited Partnership
In California there are several types of partnerships. The most common types are Limited Partnerships, General Partnerships and Limited Liability Partnerships. Depending on the type of partnership, not all partners are required to be listed in a Limited Partnership filing. If you need to know who the partners are of a Limited Partnership, hiring a private investigator is the place to start.

The problem with partnerships is that many times the same people are involved in various partnerships. To further complicate matters, often similar names may be used for various partnerships, an example might be Caswell Partners, LLC; Caswell Partners II, LLC; Caswell General Partnership; etc.

Private investigators have the means and experience to untangle these webs of inter-related Limited Partnerships. They have access to a wide variety of databases that can be cross-referenced and triangulated to track down the correct partnership data.

What people are saying

Thank you for providing me with such outstanding service. I truly appreciate you and your staff for all you’ve done for me and my family…. I’m totally pleased with the outcome and their findings… Great job!

Gerome S. | Retired | USA

I have used Tristar for years. Their response time and results are unparalleled. They get my highest praise.

Robert Clayton, Attorney | Taylor & Ring, LLP | Los Angeles, CA

Tristar found my birth mothers records the same day. I am very impressed with their professionalism and the services they provide. I will use them again for any of my needs.

Dr. Claudia Barne | Professor | 23 years

Tristar was very helpful in my address search. Kellie Anguiano was very personable and kept me up to date with the search process… Thank you so much for your help!

Emily | DDS Student | 2 years | Los Angeles, CA

Tristar is by far the most reliable and efficient investigator we have ever used.

Nicole Young | Attorney, 14 years | Woodland Hills, CA

Tristar in the news

Tristar Investigation has been featured in a dozens of publications, everything from print to TV and radio. Bellow you will find Burce Robertson interviewed and discussed on famous publications such as the History Channel, New York Times, CNN and a lot more.