In December 2020, the United States passed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 (NDAA). President Trump vetoed the NDAA, but the U.S. Congress and Senate decided to override the veto and signed it into law on January 1, 2021.
This Act contains reforms that may affect individuals and corporations that do not reside in the United States, including the following:
- New requirements are introduced for the reporting of beneficial owners to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), an office of the U.S. Department of the Treasury in charge of collecting and analyzing information on financial transactions to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and other domestic and international financial crimes. The Act establishes that regulations must be issued to implement these requirements within one year.
- FinCEN is authorized to share beneficial ownership information with U.S. and foreign authorities.
- Corporations, limited liability companies, and similar U.S. companies, as well as foreign companies domiciled in the U.S., are required to provide FinCEN with the following information about their beneficial owners:
ii. Date of birth
iii. Residence or business address
iii. Identification number
The following companies are not required to report beneficial ownership information:
i. Public companies
ii. Subsidiaries solely owned by the public company
iii. Companies with more than 20 full-time employees in the United States
iv. Companies that have an operating presence at a physical office within the United States, and
v. Companies that filed tax returns in the United States reporting over USD 5 million in gross revenue or sales.
FinCEN’s beneficial ownership database will not be public. FinCEN will only release information in the following cases:
At the request of a state agency related to national security, intelligence, or law enforcement.
At the request of a state or local law enforcement agency with a court order to obtain such information as part of a criminal or civil investigation.
At the request of a federal agency on behalf of authorities of other countries covered by an international treaty or convention or by a request for assistance made by a foreign country.
Failure to report or incomplete/incorrect reporting of beneficial ownership information will be punishable by (i) a fine of up to USD 500 per day for the duration of the violation, and (ii) a fine of up to USD 10,000 and up to two years imprisonment.
- Se introducen medidas para fortalecer las iniciativas contra el lavado de activos, entre las que se incluye la posibilidad de que el gobierno estadounidense solicite a bancos extranjeros que mantengan cuentas de corresponsalía en los Estados Unidos información sobre dichas cuentas o cualquier otra cuenta en dicho banco.