Washington Money Transmitter Laws

Who needs to register?

Under Washington statute, those who are receiving money or its equivalent value to transmit, deliver, or instruct to be delivered the money or its equivalent value to another location, inside or outside the U.S., must obtain a money transmitter license.

Money transmission does not include the provision solely of connection services to the internet, telecommunications service, or network access. Money transmission includes the selling, issuing, or acting as an intermediary for open loop stored value devices and payment instruments, but not closed loop stored value devices.


Who needs to register?

Washington Department of Financial Institutions


What are the money transmitter license requirements?

Applications for money transmitters must include the following fees and documentation:

  • Legal name, business addresses, and residential address of the applicant
  • Copy of applicant’s MSB letter of Acknowledgement from the US Treasury Department
  • Copy of AML program and most recent independent review of the program
  • List of countries the applicant will be transmitting money to and from
  • State Reference: all state money transmissions and their current status; name of licensee; type of license; license number; and contact info for individual at regulatory entity
  • Disciplinary History: regulatory investigations, administrative actions, or enforcement actions against applicant; complaints filed against applicant over last five years; material and/or money services business litigation against applicant/control affiliate over last ten years; denials, pay outs; revocations of bonds for the applicant/control affiliate; bankruptcy/receivership against applicant
  • Authorized Delegate Form: entity name and address; contact employee information; authorization for verification; VIN for mobile facilities; previous twelve months of money transmission receipts; total number of delegates; sample contract for independent authorized delegates and screening methods
  • Individual Background Forms and Credit Reports: legal and other names; social security number; date and place of birth; employer name; office of employment; residential address and history over last ten years; citizenship; contact information; signed authorization for background check; ten year employment history and indications of financial service-related business; other businesses engaged in and description including positions with money services-related businesses over last five years; convictions of any crimes over last ten years; criminal complaints, accusations, or information; indictments pending; any regulatory/complaint investigations; material litigation related to money services businesses in last ten years; civil litigation over last ten years; bankruptcy/receivership affecting individual, applicant, or other organization controlled; unsatisfied judgments or liens; adverse administrative actions
  • Financial Statements: balance sheet; profit and loss statement; current financial statement of most recent quarter end; most recent audited financial statement and two years prior if available; method and source of capitalization for new formed business; wholly owned subsidiaries can submit parent statements for current and previous two years or three years of 10Ks; two years of pro forma financial statements
  • Method of tracking Washington business separately from other states
  • Business Model: how money is collected, transmitted; records collection and retention; delegate selection; specific products and services under the license
  • Channel money services business will be conducted through
  • Identifying information, including IRS Employer ID number (social security number for sole proprietorship), trade names, contact information
  • Contact Information: registered agent; application contact; compliance officer; physical location of books and records; individual responsible over Washington money services business
  • Legal Status: Federal tax ID, Washington state unified business ID, state and date of incorporation, fiscal year and stock symbol, must register with Division of Corporations
  • Ownership and Personnel: include all executive officers, directors, partners, managers, trustees, controlling persons, other individuals exercising managerial authority; full legal name, title/status; percent ownership; SSN/IRS tax #/Employer ID; organization chart if there are any indirect owners; description and contact information of any businesses over which a principal (10%) or controlling (25%) shareholder has control
  • License fee of $1,000 plus $100 per location up to a maximum of $6,000



What are the general bonding requirements?

General bonding requirements are based on the previous year’s transmission dollar volume, and range from $10,000 to $250,000.


Additional resources:

Washington Uniform Money Services Act



Disclaimer: Information provided by Shipkevich, PLLC and any of its affiliated web pages is for general educational purposes only, and should not be taken as legal advice.