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A (Beneficial) Owners Manual: Staying Compliant in Light of New FinCEN Rule

Corporate Compliance Insights

In this article, Ian Herbert discusses what companies can do to stay compliant with new regulations that will require them to report accurate and up-to-date beneficial ownership information to the U.S. government. Keeping track of changes could prove to be a tall task. When the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) published its final rule regarding beneficial ownership reporting in September 2022, its primary goal was to create a comprehensive database of U.S. companies that could be used to aid government investigations. The Corporate Transparency Act (CTA) was based on the premise that criminal actors use the opacity of shell corporations to hide illicit movements of money. 

"Because a primary goal of the registry is to aid government investigations, FinCEN put a premium on keeping the database up to date," Herbert writes. "However, the consequences of this decision are also significant for companies trying to remain in compliance." Herbert discusses the impact of the new rules and various methods for companies to remain compliant with these new regulations, which go into effect in 2024 for new entities and 2025 for entities already in existence. "Given the short timeframe for updating any changes, it will be important for companies to develop strategies for keeping beneficial ownership information accurate and up-to-date," Herbert concludes.