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  • Elizabeth A. McMorrow

FinCEN Seeks Comments on BOI Access Rule

On January 29, 2024, the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced it is seeking comments on two aspects of the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA) Access and Safeguards Rule. The CTA authorizes law enforcement, government agencies, and financial institutions and their regulators to obtain beneficial ownership information (BOI) under certain specified circumstances for national security and law enforcement purposes.

What Is the BOI Access Rule?

The BOI Access Rule was published in the Federal Register on December 22, 2023. It implements the CTA protocols for protecting sensitive personally identifiable information (PII) reported to FinCEN. The Rule establishes the circumstances under which specified recipients have access to BOI, along with the data protection protocols and oversight mechanisms applicable to each recipient category.

Burden on FIs

If a financial institution (FI) with customer due diligence requirements under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) choses to request access to BOI, it must complete a FinCEN form. FinCEN states in its January 30, 2024 Federal Register notice that it expects the total time burden on all such FIs to be 6,474,992 hours in the first year and 1,917,352 hours in year 2 and onward. The tasks requiring this time commitment are:

  • Developing and implementing administrative and physical safeguards

  • Developing and implementing technical safeguards

  • Obtaining and documenting customer consent

  • Submitting certification for each request that it meets certain requirements

  • Training

  • Complying with certain geographic restrictions

  • Notifying FinCEN if an FI receive an information demand from a foreign government

Proposed Data Fields

The following are the proposed data fields and certification for FIs requesting BOI from FinCEN:

Company name (reporting company legal name)

Identifier type (reporting company tax identification number type; select one from list of options):

  • EIN (Employer Identification Number)

  • SSN/ITIN (Social Security Number / Individual Taxpayer Identification Number)

  • Foreign Company identifier (reporting company tax identification number)

[Select “I agree”] I certify on behalf of the financial institution making this request that: The financial institution is subject to customer due diligence requirements under applicable law and is requesting beneficial ownership information from FinCEN to facilitate the financial institution’s compliance with those requirements; the financial institution has obtained and documented the consent of the above identified company to request its beneficial ownership information from FinCEN; and the financial institution has fulfilled all other requirements of 31 CFR 1010.955(d)(2).

Comment Topics

The public has an opportunity to comment on:

  • Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of FinCEN, including whether the information shall have practical utility;

  • Accuracy of FinCEN’s estimate of the burden of the collection of information;

  • Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected;

  • Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of technology; and

  • Estimates of capital or start-up costs and costs of operation, maintenance, and purchase of services required to provide information.

The deadline for comments is April 1, 2024. Click to read the full Federal Register notice.

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