Foreign Money Transmittal for Massachusetts Consumers
Sending money outside of the United States can be completed by using a foreign transmittal agency or with a foreign transmittal agent/branch. Both foreign transmittal agencies and their agents require licensure by the Division of Banks.
A foreign transmittal agency is a business where consumers are able to send money (remittance) to recipients outside of the United States for a fee. Funds are converted to the recipients' local currency based upon the prevailing exchange rates. A consumer will typically visit an agent to initiate a transaction.
A foreign transmittal agent or branch is an affiliate of a foreign transmittal agency in which a consumer will use to commence a remittance outside of the United States. Commonly, an agent will be located at a convenience store or neighborhood market.
- What Consumers Should Know About Foreign Money Transmittal
- Relevant Statutes & Regulations for Foreign Money Transmittal
- Additional Foreign Money Transmittal Resources for Consumers
What Consumers Should Know About Foreign Money Transmittal
- Beware of unlicensed companies. Always be sure to utilize licensed foreign money transmittal agencies and agents. All foreign transmittal agencies and their agents require licensure by the Division. Several unlicensed entities have purported to be legitimate foreign transmittal agencies. Before conducting business, consumers are able to verify license status for foreign transmittal companies using the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS); licensure for foreign transmittal branches and agents are available using the Division's Find an Agent or Branch of a Foreign Transmittal Agency portal. Consumers may also use the Division's Enforcement Actions list to view any outstanding actions against licensees.
- Consumer remittances must be forwarded to the recipient within seven (7) days of acceptance and the consumer must be furnished with a receipt as proof of payment. If the consumer failed to provide the correct transmittal information, funds may be delayed beyond 7 days; however, once the consumer provides the correct transmittal information, the money transmittal must be forwarded to the recipient within 7 days.
- Consumers are required to receive disclosures prior to the remittance including, at a minimum: the exchange rate, amount of money transmitted, fees, and taxes. Receipts must also detail when the money is expected to arrive.
- Consumers have 30 minutes to cancel a transfer for a full refund.
- If a consumer's funds have not been remitted within 7 days consumers are encouraged to contact the company or agent in an attempt to resolve the matter. If an attempt to resolve the matter is unsuccessful, consumers may contact the Division of Banks Consumer Assistance Unit for further assistance.
Relevant Statutes & Regulations for Foreign Money Transmittal
- Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 169: Receipts of Deposits for Transmittal to Foreign Countries
- Division of Banks Regulation 209 CMR 45.00: The Licensing and Regulation of Money Services Businesses
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Remittance Rule (subpart B of Regulation E)
Additional Foreign Money Transmittal Resources for Consumers
- View any outstanding actions against entities using the Division of Banks Enforcement Actions
- Download a List of Approved Licensees
- Verify licensure for a foreign money transmittal company using the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS)
- Find an Agent or Branch of a Foreign Transmittal Agency
- Division of Banks Industry Guidance Relative to Money Transmission to Foreign Countries by Foreign Transmittal Agencies
- Division of Banks Selected Opinions Relative to Foreign Transmittal Agencies