2019 Tennessee Code
Title 48 - Corporations and Associations
For-Profit Business Corporations
Chapter 25 - Foreign Corporations
Part 1 - Certificate of Authority
§ 48-25-102. Consequences of transacting business without authority.
(a) A foreign corporation transacting business in this state without a certificate of authority may not maintain a proceeding in any court in this state until it obtains a certificate of authority.
(b) The successor to a foreign corporation that transacted business in this state without a certificate of authority and the assignee of a cause of action arising out of that business may not maintain a proceeding based on that cause of action in any court in this state until the foreign corporation or its successor obtains a certificate of authority.
(c) A court may stay a proceeding commenced by a foreign corporation, its successor, or assignee until it determines whether the foreign corporation or its successor requires a certificate of authority. If it so determines, the court may further stay the proceeding until the foreign corporation or its successor obtains the certificate.
(d) A foreign corporation which transacts business or conducts affairs in this state without a certificate of authority shall be liable to this state, for the years or parts thereof during which it transacted business or conducted affairs in this state without a certificate of authority, in an amount equal to treble the amount of all fees, penalties and taxes, plus interest, which would have been imposed by the laws of this state upon such corporation had it duly applied for and received a certificate of authority as required by this chapter, and thereafter had failed to file all reports required.
(e) An application for a certificate of authority by a foreign corporation which has transacted business in this state without a certificate of authority shall not be filed by the secretary of state until all amounts due under subsection (d) shall have been paid.
(f) Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b), the failure of a foreign corporation to obtain a certificate of authority does not impair the validity of its corporate acts or prevent it from defending any proceeding in this state.