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Using the New Beneficial Owner Certification Form
Wednesday, February 22, 2017 6:35 AM

Once the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s new customer due diligence rule becomes effective May 11, 2018, credit unions will be required to identify and verify the beneficial owners of business-type accounts. One way to accomplish this is to use the new Beneficial Owner Certification Form, included in appendix A of the rule.

The form must be completed by the person opening the new account, on or after May 11, 2018, on behalf of a legal entity. It must be a natural person authorized to open the account, it cannot be the entity itself.

Legal entities include:

  • Corporations;
  • Limited liability companies;
  • Other entities that are created by filing a public document with a Secretary of State or similar office; and
  • General partnerships or any similar business entities formed in the United States or a foreign country.

This requirement will not apply to sole proprietorships, unincorporated associations, or natural persons opening accounts on their own behalf.

The form requires the person opening the account to provide their name and title, as well as the name, address, date of birth and identification number for each of the “beneficial owners” of the entity. Using the form provided in the rule is not the only way to identify beneficial owners of legal entity accounts. 

Credit unions may also use their own forms, as long as they meet the requirements in the rule, or obtain the information by any other means--provided the person opening the account and providing the information certifies that it is accurate.

For more information, including definitions of “ownership” and “control,” see CUNA’s CompBlog, as well as CUNA’s CompNotes final rule analysis.