Earlier this month I was asked by a large, local bank to meet and discuss the industrial hemp industry and the current state of local, state and federal legal landscapes. Naturally, one topic of our discussion was the recently issued Joint Guidance on Providing Financial Services to Customers Engaged in Hemp-Related Businesses, which is a statement clarifying the legal status of hemp growth and production and the relevant requirements under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) when looking to provide services to hemp-related businesses.
This statement provides banks with background information on the legal status of hemp, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) interim final rule on the production of hemp, and the BSA considerations when providing banking services to hemp-related businesses and clearly conveys that banks are no longer required to file suspicious activity reports (SAR) for customers solely because they are engaged in the growth or cultivation of hemp in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. The statement was issued by the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, FinCEN, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors.
Here is the statement:
If you are a financial institution with further questions, your state department of agriculture or the USDA can help.
Last modified: March 9, 2020