Code Section Group

Financial Code - FIN

DIVISION 1.2. MONEY TRANSMISSION ACT [2000 - 2176]

  ( Division 1.2 added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 243, Sec. 4. )

CHAPTER 6. Consumer Disclosures [2100 - 2106]
  ( Chapter 6 added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 243, Sec. 4. )

2100.
  

(a) (1) Each licensee shall file with the commissioner a certified copy of every receipt form used by it or by its agent for receiving money for transmission prior to its first use. No licensee or its agent shall use any receipt, a certified copy of which has not been filed with the commissioner, or use a receipt that the commissioner has deemed not to be in compliance pursuant to paragraph (2).

(2) If the commissioner determines, within 30 business days of the filing date of a receipt, that the receipt does not comply with the requirements of this section or Sections 2102 and 2103, the commissioner shall notify the licensee in writing that the receipt is not in compliance with those requirements.

(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), before a new licensee issues its first receipt to a customer, it shall file with the commissioner a certified copy of the receipt forms to be used by it or its agents for receiving money for transmission. The new licensee shall not use the receipt forms until approved by the commissioner. For purposes of this subdivision, a new licensee is a licensee that has not been previously licensed by the commissioner as a money transmitter or has not previously received money for transmission in California.

(c) If a receipt is required by this division to be in English and another language, the English version of the receipt shall govern any dispute concerning the terms of the receipt. However, any discrepancies between the English version and any other version due to the translation of the receipt from English to another language including errors or ambiguities shall be construed against the licensee or its agent and the licensee or its agent shall be liable for any damages caused by these discrepancies.

(d) Any licensee violating the requirements of this section shall be subject to a fine of fifty dollars ($50) for each violation. This provision is in addition to any other enforcement provisions that may apply to such a violation.

(e) If any licensee or its agent uses a receipt form, a certified copy of which has not been filed with the commissioner, the licensee shall be liable for the acts of its agent whether or not the licensee authorized the agent to use that form.

(f) The receipt form shall comply with the requirements of Sections 2102 and 2103.

(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 356, Sec. 22. Effective January 1, 2013.)

2101.
  

Every licensee or its agent shall forward all money received for transmission or give instructions committing equivalent money to the person designated by the customer. Unless the transmission is for the payment of goods or services or unless otherwise ordered by his or her customer, this requirement shall be satisfied within 10 days after receiving that money.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 533, Sec. 7. Effective January 1, 2014.)

2102.
  

(a) Every licensee or its agent shall refund to the customer within 10 days of receipt of the customer’s written request for a refund any and all money received for transmission unless any of the following occurs:

(1) The money has been forwarded within 10 days of the date of receipt.

(2) Instructions have been given committing an equivalent amount of money to the person designated by the customer within 10 days of the date of the receipt of the money from the customer.

(3) The customer instructs the licensee to transmit the money at a time beyond 10 days. If the customer gives instructions as to when the money shall be forwarded or transmitted and the moneys have not yet been forwarded or transmitted, the licensee or its agent shall refund the customer’s money within 10 days of receipt of the customer’s written request for a refund.

(4) The refund would violate law.

(b) If a customer’s instructions as to when the money shall be forwarded or transmitted are not complied with and the money has not yet been forwarded or transmitted, the customer has a right to a refund of his or her money. A cause of action under this section may be brought in small claims court if it does not exceed the jurisdiction of that court, or in any other appropriate court. The customer shall be entitled to recover each of the following:

(1) Any and all money received for transmission, plus any fees and charges paid by the customer.

(2) A penalty in an amount not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000). The court shall award the prevailing party costs and attorney’s fees.

(Amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 499, Sec. 12. Effective January 1, 2015.)

2103.
  

(a) In the case of money received for transmission, the licensee or its agent shall give the customer a receipt at the time of the transaction.

(1) The receipt shall contain the following information, as applicable:

(A) The name of the sender.

(B) The name of the designated recipient.

(C) The date of the transaction, which is the day the customer funds the money transmission.

(D) The name of the licensee.

(E) The amount to be transferred to the designated recipient, in the currency in which the money transmission is funded, using the term “Transfer Amount” or a substantially similar term.

(F) Any fees and taxes imposed on the money transmission by the licensee or its agent which are payable or have been paid by the sender, in the currency in which the money transmission is funded, using the terms “transfer fees” for fees and “transfer taxes” for taxes, or substantially similar terms.

(G) The total amount of the transaction, which is the sum of subparagraphs (E) and (F), in the currency in which the money transmission is funded, using the term “total” or a substantially similar term.

(H) The exchange rate, if any, used by the licensee or its agent for the money transmission, rounded consistently for each currency to no fewer than two decimal places and no more than four decimal places, using the term “exchange rate” or a substantially similar term.

(I) For all transmissions, other than transmissions related to e-commerce transactions, the amount that will be received by the designated recipient, in the currency in which the funds will be received, using the term “total to recipient” or a substantially similar term. For transmissions related to e-commerce transactions, the amount that will be received by the designated recipient before any fees, taxes, or other amounts payable by the designated recipient are deducted, using the term “total to recipient” or a substantially similar term. These fees, taxes, or other amounts shall be disclosed to the designated recipient. The disclosure of fees, taxes, or other amounts payable by the designated recipient, which need not be disclosed to the sender, shall be disclosed as part of a separate written agreement between the licensee and the designated recipient.

(2) (A) In addition to the disclosures set forth in paragraph (1), the receipt shall either include or have attached a conspicuous statement as follows:


“RIGHT TO REFUND

You, the customer, are entitled to a refund of the money to be transmitted as the result of this agreement if _____ (name of licensee) does not forward the money received from you within 10 days of the date of its receipt, or does not give instructions committing an equivalent amount of money to the person designated by you within 10 days of the date of the receipt of the funds from you unless otherwise instructed by you.

If your instructions as to when the moneys shall be forwarded or transmitted are not complied with and the money has not yet been forwarded or transmitted, you have a right to a refund of your money.

If you want a refund, you must mail or deliver your written request to _____ (name of licensee) at _____ (mailing address of licensee). If you do not receive your refund, you may be entitled to your money back plus a penalty of up to $1,000 and attorney’s fees pursuant to Section 2102 of the California Financial Code.”


(B) The right to refund statement set forth in subparagraph (A) is not required to be included on receipts involving e-commerce transactions where the customer sends a payment for goods or services.

(3) The receipt required by this section shall be made in English and in the language principally used by that licensee or that agent to advertise, solicit, or negotiate, either orally or in writing, at that branch office, if other than English. For transactions that do not occur in a branch office, the receipt shall be made in English and in the language principally used by that licensee or that agent to advertise, solicit, or negotiate money transmission, either orally or in writing.

(4) The receipt required by this subdivision may be provided electronically for transactions that are initiated electronically or in which a customer agrees to receive an electronic receipt.

(5) Disclosures in the receipt required by this subdivision shall be in a minimum 8-point font, except for receipts provided via mobile phone or text message.

(b) If window and exterior signs concerning the rates of exchange for money received for transmission are used, they shall clearly state in English and in the same language principally used by the licensee or any agent of the licensee to advertise, solicit, or negotiate, either orally or in writing, at that branch office if other than English, the rate of exchange for exchanging the currency of the United States for foreign currency. If an interior sign or any advertising is used that quotes exchange rates, it shall, in addition to clearly stating the rates of exchange for exchanging the currency of the United States for foreign currency, also state all commissions and fees charged on all such transactions.

(c) At each branch office, there shall be disclosed the exchange rates, fees, and commissions charged in English and in the same language principally used by the licensee or any agent of the licensee to advertise, solicit, or negotiate, either orally or in writing, with respect to money received for transmission at that branch office. At each branch office, there shall be signage clearly identifying the name of the licensee as well as any trade names used by the licensee at that branch office. In the event that a licensee or agent conducts money transmission activity via an Internet Web site or mobile application that is not in a branch office, the commissioner may authorize an alternative disclosure meeting the requirements of this section. Any Internet Web site through which a licensee conducts money transmission shall clearly identify the name of the licensee as well as any trade names used by the licensee on the Internet Web site.

(d) If the customer does not specify at the time the money is presented to the licensee or its agent the country to which the money is to be transmitted, the rate of exchange for the transaction is not required to be set forth on the receipt. If the customer does specify at the time the money is presented to the licensee or its agent the country to which the money is to be transmitted but the specified country’s laws require the rate of exchange for the transaction to be determined at the time the transaction is paid out to the intended recipient, the rate of exchange for the transaction is not required to be set forth on the receipt.

(Amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 499, Sec. 13. Effective January 1, 2015.)

2104.
  

Each licensee or agent shall prominently post on the premises of each branch office that issues or sells payment instruments, and at machines located in this state and operated by the licensee or agent that issues or sells payment instruments, a notice clearly stating that payment instruments are not insured by the federal government, the state government, or any other public or private entity. This notice shall be printed in English and in the same language principally used by the licensee or any agent of the licensee to advertise, solicit, or negotiate, either orally or in writing, with respect to the purchase of payment instruments. The information required in this notice shall be clear, legible, and in letters not less than one-half inch in height. The notice shall be posted in a conspicuous location in the unobstructed view of the public within the premises. The licensee shall provide to each of its agents the notice required by this section. In those locations operated by an agent, the agent, not the licensee, shall be responsible for the failure to properly post the required notice.

(Added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 243, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 2012.)

2105.
  

(a) Each licensee or agent shall prominently post on the premises of each branch office that conducts money transmission a notice stating that:

“If you have complaints with respect to any aspect of the money transmission activities conducted at this location, you may contact the California Department of Business Oversight at its toll-free telephone number, 1-866-275-2677, by email at consumer.services@dbo.ca.gov, or by mail at the Department of Business Oversight, Consumer Services, 1515 K Street, Suite 200, Sacramento, CA 95814.”

(b) The commissioner may by order or regulation modify the content of the notice required by this section. This notice shall be printed in English and in the same language principally used by the licensee or any agent of the licensee to advertise, solicit, or negotiate either orally or in writing, with respect to money transmission at that branch office. The information required in this notice shall be clear, legible, and in letters not less than one-half inch in height. The notice shall be posted in a conspicuous location in the unobstructed view of the public within the premises. The licensee shall provide to each of its agents the notice required by this section. In those locations operated by an agent, the agent, and not the licensee, shall be responsible for the failure to properly post the required notice.

(c) In the event that a licensee or agent conducts money transmission activity via an Internet Web site or a mobile application that is not in a branch office, the commissioner may authorize an alternative form of the notice required in subdivision (a).

(Amended by Stats. 2015, Ch. 190, Sec. 34. Effective January 1, 2016.)

2106.
  

(a) No licensee shall sell or issue any form of payment instrument in California unless a certified copy of the payment instrument has first been filed with the commissioner. The payment instrument shall clearly identify the licensee as the issuer.

(b) The commissioner may by order or regulation declare that a form of payment instrument is prohibited if it is misleading in any material respect or otherwise does not comply with applicable law.

(c) A payment instrument that identifies the agent through which the licensee sells the payment instrument shall identify the agent as such and shall identify the licensee at least as conspicuously as it does the agent.

(Added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 243, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 2012.)

FINFinancial Code - FIN