As a follow-up to yesterday’s post regarding the status of FinCEN’s 2014 marijuana banking guidance in light of the Attorney General’s policy reversal on marijuana enforcement at the federal level, we have received written confirmation from FinCEN that its 2014 guidance remains in place. In response to our inquiries, FinCEN provided us with the following statement:
“The SAR reporting structure laid out in the February 14, 2014 guidance remains in place. FinCEN will continue to work closely with law enforcement and the financial sector to combat illicit finance, and we will notify the financial sector of any changes to FinCEN’s SAR reporting expectations.”
In addition, the two U.S. Senators from Colorado, Michael Bennet (D) and Cory Gardner (R), announced that they have sent a letter to FinCEN urging the agency to retain its 2014 marijuana banking guidance. In their press release, the senators warned that “repealing the guidance could increase the amount of cash used by marijuana businesses, raising public safety issues and reducing the oversight and transparency of marijuana transactions.” A copy of their letter is available here.
We are closely monitoring this area and will provide timely updates as to any developments.