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Money Transmitter License Guide

How to Become a Licensed Money Transmitter

This guide is for informational purposes only. SuretyBonds.com does not regulate or manage licensing for money transmitters. Contact your obligee for the latest official requirements.

How to Become a Licensed Money Transmitter

Money transmitters, also known as money remitters or money transfer services, transfer funds or provide payment services. They are money services businesses (MSBs), meaning they convert or wire money from one party to another. 

Exact license requirements vary state-to-state. Read this comprehensive guide for an overview of money transmitter licensing. 

How to Get a Money Transmitter License

Who Needs a Money Transmitter License? 

Most companies and individuals providing funds transfer services in the U.S. need a money transmitter license. Examples of money transmitter companies include: 

  • Online retailers accepting credit card payments
  • Mobile applications allowing peer-to-peer money transfers
  • Wire transfer companies
  • Currency exchangers and dealers

A money transmitter license is required in every state except Montana. 

How to Get a Money Transmitter License in 7 Steps 

Step 1. Complete Your Application

Each state has a unique application packet. Fill out all sections and submit the required documentation. 

At minimum, you’ll need to provide the following information on your application:

  • Name
  • Personal address  
  • Business address(es) of all locations 
  • Names and address of all business partners/officers 

Step 2. Start NMLS Registration 

Most states require online registration through the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS). Find your state on the NMLS map, select your license type and get started. 

Colorado, Nevada and Florida are the only states that don’t do licensing through the NMLS. If you work in one of these states, contact your local licensing authority for more information. 

Step 3. Submit an Up-To-Date Financial Statement 

You’ll need to provide proof of your current financial status. Exact documentation varies, but states usually require: 

  • Audited financial statements
  • Credit reports 
  • Proof of net worth 

Step 4. Pay All Fees Associated With Your Application 

You’ll need to pay an application fee along with a variety of other administrative fees before getting your money transmitter license. The main fees you can expect include: 

  • Initial application fee (varies by state)
  • Credit report fee ($15 per person) 
  • Criminal background fee (typically $36.25)
  • NMLS processing fee (typically $100)

Step 5. File a Surety Bond

You must be bonded in your state to ensure you handle all funds legally and ethically. Once you apply for and purchase your bond, SuretyBonds.com will file it directly through the NMLS. 

Visit our Money Transmitter License Guide to find specific bond information for your state.

Step 6. Complete a Criminal Background Check

Many states require you to submit fingerprints for a criminal background for licensing approval. FBI criminal background checks cost $36.25 per person. 

Step 7. Register With the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network

You must complete online registration with the BSA E-Filing System for the Department of Treasury, regardless of the state your license is in. This registration requires renewal every two years.  

How to Get a Money Transmitter License in 7 Steps

How Much Does a Money Transmitter License Cost in the U.S.? 

Fees vary state-to-state. Some money transmitter license fees cost as little as $100, but states like Texas require fees up to $10,000. The NMLS may charge an additional $100 processing fee. 

Get Your Money Transmitter License Today 

SuretyBonds.com is ready to help you get bonded easier and quicker than any other surety company! Visit our money transmitter bond page to get your free quote today. 

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Last Updated: May 3, 2024

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