MSBStatus.com FAQ

Who needs MSBStatus.com reports?

  • Banks performing due diligence on new fintech clients
  • State and federal regulators preparing for audits
  • Fintech startups doing market research
  • Payments law firms doing due diligence and research for clients
  • Fintech consultants

Each of the above can save about 35 hours of work per report. Tha'ts not including the snazzy presentation of aggregated data in each report.

Doesn't NMLS give all this information?

No. Actually, NMLS covers only about 30 states. So NMLS data is only part of the story for any given MSB. Some states that use NMLS have actually sent only partially complete information to NMLS when compared to the information posted on their own state regulator sites. MSBStatus reports attempt to make the best of these multiple sources for each state and license-type.

Doesn't FinCEN give all this information?

No. FinCEN provides only the Federal MSB BSA registration information, but has no state licensing information.

Why should I pay for publicly available information?

To save time. If you prefer searching all the state and federal sites for report information, you can. Our reports save a lot of time and bring together information that is not available in one place. MSBStatus.com has spent over a year developing expertiese in MSB information and an MSB-specific big data analytics system to help gather the most relevant information on an MSB within 30 seconds or so. Collecting MSBStatus.com report information manually would take about 20 hours per report.

How long does it take to get a report?

About 30 seconds.

How fresh is the data?

All FinCEN and most state data is pulled fresh for each report. Some data may be older than the date of your report owing to state supply of data on a limited basis. Alabama data may be up to 6 months old because we have to buy the list of Alabama MSBs from the regulator; it is not posted on the internet.

Will reports purchased always be fresh?

MSBStatus.com reports will be fresh at the time of purchase, subject to the Terms of Use of this site, but if the entity searched picks up new licenses a few months after the report, you would need a new report to find information on those new licenses. Reports at not fresh after they are purchased. For fresh data, a new report on the same entity must be purchased.

What name should I search?

Search the company name or dba of the entity for which you would like to know the MSB status.  MSBStatus.com will then give you the best matches to the name you have entered. Select from amongst those matches the one for which you want a report.  MSBStatus.com will then give you additional information, such as the address of the entity, to make quite sure that you are searching the entity in which you are interested. Confirm that this is the one you would like and a report will be produced.

Can't get a report on name I entered?

We allow searches only for entities that are registered with FinCEN. Remember, an entity can register with FinCEN before it gets its state licenses. An entity is not likely to have any state licenses without also being registered with FinCEN. This is why we limit searches to FinCEN-registered entities. If we don’t permit the search you are trying check the names / dbas of the entity and try again. When you search a name, we run it against the largest list of company names and dba's that we have to try to give you the broadest possible scope of search. Custom searches, by country or address, can be done for additional fees by special request through contacting us.

Will you sell me a useless report?

We only sell reports on entities that say they are MSBs, so our reports are very unlikely to be useless.

Why am I offered 2 or more reports for one name?

Some MSBs operate through more than one entity, others have changed their name and DBA's over time. The restuls is that you might need to pull more than one report on a given entity to get the full picture of their MSB status.

Entity has no state licenses but is FinCEN-registered as an MSB in all states. How is this possible?

For various reasons, some entities take the position that they are MSBs under federal law but not under state law. Alternatively, the entity could be in the process of obtaining its state licenses which is why it is not licensed there yet. For legal information on MSB status at the federal or state levels, see www.fintech.law.

Why are the reports not perfect?

MSBStatus reports are impefect because the dozens of website that provide the data that we collate are constantly changing. We have made a decsion to provide as much information as possible 

Is this a government site?

No. MSBStatus.com is a private business and is not owned or endorsed by any state or federal government agency.

What about Canada?

For now, MSBStatus.com reports cover the U.S. (federal and state) and Canada (federal). Quebec is the only province in Canada that licenses MSBs, Quebec license information is not yet incldued in MSBStatus.com reports, but Canadian Federal information from FINTRAC (which is like the FinCEN of Canada) is included.

What about the U.K., E.U., Singapore etc...?

We hope to add other jurisdictions to the reports soon.  Note that our FACTA results already show the various international companies a given entity is using if they register with FATCA using a similar name.

Are reports legal opinions on MSB status?

No. None of our reports constitute legal advice. The legal MSB status of a given entity is a mixed question of law and fact that can be determined only by a qualified lawyer. MSBStatus reports show what entities have filed with various federal and state regulators, but that information does not, legally, prove that an entity is or is not an MSB. For more information on laws related to MSBs, see www.fintech.law. For example, some entities are registered with FinCEN as money transmitters, but they are not actually money transmitters.  Similarly, some entities are money transmitters but do not actually have the state licenses that moeny transmitters are required to have. Please consult a qualified lawyer for legal advice.

What's the price?

Reports cost between US$300 and US$150 depending on how many report credits you purchase. There is no recurring billiing and no subscription. If you buy more than one report credit, you get a discount on subsequent purchases for the ensuing year.  Each report save about 35 hours of work.

Can I get an API into MSBStatus.com Data?

Sure, contact us to discuss this feature.

Who runs this site?

MSBStatus.com is a company founded by Adam Atlas who is a leading U.S. payments lawyer. More on Adam at www.adamatlas.com. Adam found himself wasting a lot of time resarching MSB status information for clients and thought that an automated system would be much more efficient.

What should I do with time saved by using MSBStatus.com?

Outdoor sports are highly recommended.