top of page

Navigating the New Waters of Financial Transparency: FinCEN's Landmark Rule

Updated: Dec 28, 2023

FinCEN's rule with US Capitol, clipboard, magnifying glass, and shield, symbolizing enhanced corporate transparenc
FinCEN's Final Rule: A Milestone in Financial Transparen

Introduction:

The financial world just took a significant step towards greater transparency and security. On December 22, 2023, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) unveiled a groundbreaking final rule that reshapes how beneficial ownership information (BOI) is accessed and safeguarded. But what does this mean for businesses and financial institutions? Let’s dive in!


Understanding the Rule:

This new rule, part of the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA) embedded in the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020, aims to peel back the layers of corporate ownership, shedding light on the true owners of entities. The core of this rule lies in Section 6403 of the CTA ([Section 6403](https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/31/5336)), requiring companies to report their BOI to FinCEN.


Why It Matters:

For too long, opaque corporate structures have enabled illicit activities. By mandating the disclosure of BOI, this rule is a game-changer in combating money laundering and other financial crimes. FinCEN is committed to creating a robust database that balances accessibility for authorized users with stringent security and confidentiality measures.


Access and Safeguards:

The rule, encapsulated in 31 CFR 1010.955 ([31 CFR 1010.955](https://www.ecfr.gov/current/title-31/subtitle-B/chapter-X/part-1010)), clarifies who can access BOI and how it can be used. While expanding access to a broader range of financial institutions, the rule imposes strict limits on re-disclosure and mandates adherence to high cybersecurity standards.


Prohibitions and Permissions:

Adhering closely to the CTA, this rule extends the prohibition on unauthorized disclosure of BOI. It covers current and former government officials, as well as contractors and agents. Yet, it allows certain disclosures, like sharing information for law enforcement or litigation purposes.


Global Reach with Restrictions:

Interestingly, the rule revises how BOI can be shared internationally. Financial institutions aren't confined to keeping BOI within the U.S. but face restrictions on sharing with certain foreign jurisdictions. They must also comply with security standards akin to those in the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act or establish equally protective measures.


Pilot to Full Implementation:

FinCEN plans a phased rollout of the BOI access system, starting with a pilot program in 2024. Access will gradually expand to various federal, state, local, and tribal agencies, and ultimately to qualifying financial institutions.


The Road Ahead:

This rule doesn't alter the 2016 Customer Due Diligence (CDD) Rule yet, but changes are on the horizon. Financial institutions must continue adhering to the existing CDD standards until new revisions are introduced.


Conclusion:

FinCEN’s final rule marks a pivotal moment in the fight against financial crime. By enhancing transparency and tightening security around beneficial ownership information, it sets a new standard in corporate accountability and integrity. As the financial world adapts to these changes, staying informed and compliant is more crucial than ever.


Further Reading and References:

- FinCEN Press Release: [FinCEN Final Rule RIN 1506-AB59](https://www.fincen.gov/news/news-releases)

- Detailed Fact Sheet: [Beneficial Ownership Information Access and Safeguards Final Rule](https://www.fincen.gov/resources/statutes-regulations/administrative-rulings)

- Explore the CTA’s Legal Framework: [Corporate Transparency Act](https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/2513/text)

---

The content provided in this blog post is for informational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice. While we strive to ensure the accuracy and timeliness of the information presented, the rapidly changing nature of legal and regulatory environments means that we cannot guarantee its current applicability or completeness.


This blog post does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Le Tax Law, PLLC. It should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your jurisdiction.


Readers are advised to consult with a qualified attorney to understand how these legal developments may apply to their specific circumstances. If you are seeking legal advice or assistance, we encourage you to reach out to our experienced team.


Schedule a Consultation: If you’re looking to navigate the complexities of FinCEN's new rule or have other legal queries, we’re here to help. Schedule an appointment with us at Le Tax Law to discuss how we can assist you in preparing for these changes and ensure your compliance with the latest regulations.


Remember, taking proactive steps today can safeguard your business interests tomorrow.

コメント


bottom of page