Does My Small Business Need to File Beneficial Ownership Information?

Does My Small Business Need to File Beneficial Ownership Information?

Last updated on May 3rd, 2024

Under the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA), certain businesses formed or operating in the U.S. must report information about their beneficial owners – the people who own or control them – to the Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). This applies to most companies, including small businesses.

While it sounds like the stuff spy movies are made of, FinCEN Beneficial Ownership Information (BOI) reporting is real and is something businesses need to take seriously.

The U.S. adopted the law to protect against money laundering and related crimes while promoting national security. The willful failure to comply or the willful attempt to provide fraudulent information can result in fines of up to $591 each day a violation continues and criminal prosecution (imprisonment for up to 2 years and/or up to a $10,000 fine).

Earlier this year, the law was challenged in the Northern District of Alabama. The court ruled it exceeds Congress’ power and can’t be enforced against the plaintiffs (Isaac Winkles and companies for which he is the beneficial owner; the National Small Business Association, and its members. This is currently under appeal. For now, any covered entity other than those named in the suit are required to comply.

So, what is beneficial ownership information (BOI)? BOI is information about individuals who directly or indirectly own or control a company.

What companies are required to report BOI? According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a reporting company is any privately held company – domestic or foreign – registered to conduct business in the U.S.

There is a list of 23 entity types that are exempt from reporting, including nonprofits, government authorities, publicly traded companies, banks/credit unions, and such. If your business is not considered exempt and it is a domestic or foreign reporting company, filing requirements and deadlines apply.

A business created or registered before January 1, 2024, has until January 1, 2025, to file. Otherwise, the business must file within 90 calendar days of receipt of the company’s creation or registration if it’s before January 1, 2025. Thereafter, the filing must occur within 30 days of creation/registration.

Full details and resources are available on the FinCEN website.  Go there to file BOI information, see Frequently Asked Questions, and access resources for small businesses including a Compliance Guide.

As you take care of the many aspects of running a business – including BOI filings (if required), please remember RBT CPAs is available to meet all of your accounting, tax, audit, and advisory needs. We’ve been proudly serving municipalities, businesses, non-profits, and individuals in the Hudson Valley for over 50 years. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call and find out how we can be Remarkably Better Together.

RBT CPAs is proud to say 100% of its work is prepared in America. Our company does not offshore work, so you always know who is handling your confidential financial data.


Note: RBT CPAs is not a law firm and the information provided herein should not be taken as advice. Any questions should be directed to your legal counsel.