FinCEN adds eight new FAQs on beneficial ownership rules, which take effect Jan. 1

“Beneficial ownership information” (BOI) frequently asked questions (FAQs) dealing with information reporting rules have been updated with eight new queries by the Treasury’s financial crime enforcement arm, the agency said Thursday.

The Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) said the updated FAQs include new questions about the reporting process, reporting companies, beneficial owners, company applicants, reporting requirements, initial reports, and reporting company exemptions.

The BOI rules take effect Jan. 1, FinCEN noted. Essentially, FinCEN said, that means many companies will have to report information about their beneficial owners — individuals who ultimately own or control the company. The process for making those reports begins at the first day of the new year.

With the updated FAQs on BOI, the list now includes 54 separate questions. The new questions added to the list are:

  • (B. 7): Is a reporting company required to use an attorney or a certified public accountant (CPA) to submit beneficial ownership information to FinCEN? (The answer: no.)
  • (C. 3) Are certain corporate entities, such as statutory trusts, business trusts, or foundations, reporting companies? (It depends.)
  • (C. 4) Is a trust considered a reporting company if it registers with a court of law for the purpose of establishing the court’s jurisdiction over any disputes involving the trust? (No.)
  • (D. 10) Is a reporting company’s designated “partnership representative” or “tax matters partner” a beneficial owner? (It depends.)
  • (E. 4) Can a company applicant be removed from a BOI report if the company applicant no longer has a relationship with the reporting company? (No.)
  • (F. 6) Is there a requirement to annually report beneficial ownership information? (No.)
  • (G. 3) How can I obtain a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) for a new company within 30 days so that I can file an initial beneficial ownership information report on time? (The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers a free online application for an Employer Identification Number (EIN), a type of TIN, which is provided immediately upon submission of the application.)
  • (G. 4) Should an initial BOI report include historical beneficial owners of a reporting company, or only beneficial owners as of the time of filing? (An initial BOI report should only include the beneficial owners as of the time of the filing.)
  • (L. 4) If I own a group of related companies, can I consolidate employees across those companies to meet the criteria of a large operating company exemption from the reporting company definition? (No.)
  • (L. 5) How does a company report to FinCEN that the company is exempt? (A company does not need to report to FinCEN that it is exempt from the BOI reporting requirements if it has always been exempt.)

For more complete answers for each of the questions, with details, see the link below.

Beneficial Ownership Information Reporting: Frequently Asked Questions