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#1397394 - 05/27/10 07:51 PM Western Union Agent Only-MSB?
ComplianceGurl, CRCM Offline
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Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 498
I feel silly for asking this question but I keep getting conflicting answers. If a business is an AGENT ONLY for Western Union and they cash and sell Western Union money orders with no $$ limits, are they an MSB and should they register?
I've heard that since they are only an agent they do not need to register. I've also been told that since they are selling and cashing WU money orders with no cash limits they DO need to register. Ugh...
Thank you so much for clearing this up once and for all.

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#1397408 - 05/27/10 08:04 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
GenerousLife Offline
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Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,466
USA
A business that is an agent of Western Union must be able to provide you with documentation to support their agent status. Their agent agreement will detail the activities for which they are covered by Western Union.

For any other activities, check cashing for example, if they exceed the MSB triggers, then they need to register as an MSB for those activities in their own name.

I hope that helps.
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#1397410 - 05/27/10 08:04 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
John Burnett Offline
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John Burnett
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 39,704
Cape Cod
They are an MSB, but they don't need to register with FinCEN if their MSB activity is all done as a Western Union agent. If they have other MSB activity that meets the trigger levels, they'll need to register in spite of their WU agent status.

However, they may still have to register with or obtain a license from a state authority, depending on your state's requirements.
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#1397414 - 05/27/10 08:06 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
ACBbank Offline
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ACBbank
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 4,198
New York City
If they are a registered agent of Western Union and not providing services outside of that agreement, I don't believe that they have to register with FinCen. I'm not sure on your individual state requirements (if any).

I would let a few other people chime in prior to accepting my opinion as law though.
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#1397422 - 05/27/10 08:13 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ACBbank
ComplianceGurl, CRCM Offline
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Posts: 498
Thank you John and ACB! My files are complete. :-) For now...

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#1397592 - 05/28/10 12:53 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
ComplianceGurl, CRCM Offline
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Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 498
I've tried searching our states website and cannot find anything on licensing laws for agents...any ideas on where I might look? Thank you!

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#1397788 - 05/28/10 05:12 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
BrendaC Offline
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BrendaC
Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 6,029
Sweet Home AL
It would depend on what activity is triggering MSB classification. You might try "money transmitter" or look in statutes at Sale of Checks Act if they have one.
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#1397832 - 05/28/10 06:33 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? BrendaC
ComplianceGurl, CRCM Offline
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Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 498
Thanks Brenda!

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#1397876 - 05/28/10 07:49 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
Kathleen O. Blanchard Offline

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Kathleen O. Blanchard
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 21,281
Or call state department of licensing.
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#1929142 - 06/03/14 09:57 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? GenerousLife
Lele Offline
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Lele
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 827
In the Sun
So we should request their 'agent agreement'?
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#1929177 - 06/04/14 12:22 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? ComplianceGurl, CRCM
devsfan Offline
Diamond Poster
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,927
NYC
We always request a copy of the agent's agreement with Western Union, Money Gram, etc. Sometimes we are told that WU prohibits this but we insist and always get it.

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#1929207 - 06/04/14 01:35 PM Re: Western Union Agent Only-MSB? devsfan
Cape Codder Offline
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Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 413
We, too, require all MSB agents to provide documentation from the parent MSB that they are an authorized agent. In addition, as all MSB's in our state (agent or otherwise) must be licensed by the MA Division of Banks, we also require evidence of same.
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