The Corporate Transparency Act (CTA) was signed into law to fight crimes commonly associated with illegal business activities. A couple examples include terrorist financing and money laundering. If your business can be defined as a “reporting company” under the CTA, you may need to comply with new beneficial ownership information (BOI) reporting rules. This new law will be taking effect on January 1, 2024.
A reporting company includes:
A reporting company may also be any private entity formed in a foreign country that’s properly registered to do business in a U.S. state.
Reporting companies must provide information about their “beneficial owners” to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. A beneficial owner is someone who, directly or indirectly, exercises substantial control over a reporting company, or who owns or controls at least 25% of its interests. A senior officer or person with authority over senior officers often exhibits indirect control.
The CTA does exempt a wide range of entities from the BOI reporting rules — including government units, nonprofit organizations and insurers. Notably, an exemption was created for “large operating companies” that:
However, many of these businesses need to comply with other reporting requirements.
The Beneficial Ownership Information (BOI) reporting requirements are extensive. Reporting companies must file a report with FinCEN that includes:
Reporting companies must also submit the name, address, date of birth and “unique identifying number information” of each beneficial owner. A unique identifying number may be a U.S. passport or state driver’s license number. Reporting must also include an image of the document containing the identifying number in the filing.
In addition, the CTA requires reporting companies to provide identifying information about their “company applicants.” The IRS defines a company applicant as someone who’s responsible for:
Note: This rule often encompasses legal representatives acting in a business capacity.
Reporting companies have either 30 days or one year from the effective date of January 1, 2024, to comply with the CTA. Reporting companies created or registered before the effective date have one year to file their initial reports with FinCEN. Those created or registered on or after January 1, 2024, will have 30 days upon receipt of their creation or registration documents to file initial reports.
After initially filing, reporting companies have 30 days to file an updated report reflecting any changes to previously reported BOI. In addition, reporting companies must correct inaccurate Beneficial Ownership Information in previously filed reports within 30 days after the date they become aware of the error.
With the effective date closing in quickly, now’s the time to determine whether your business is a nonexempt reporting company that must comply with the Beneficial Ownership Information reporting rules. Our accountants in Mundelein IL can help you make this determination in consultation with your legal advisors.