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§32A-2-8. Qualifications for license or renewal of license.

(a) The commissioner may issue a license to an applicant only upon first determining that the financial condition, business experience, and character and general fitness of an applicant are such that the issuance of the license is in the public interest.

(b) An applicant for a license shall agree in writing to comply with the currency reporting and record-keeping requirements of 31 U.S.C. §5313, as well as those set forth in 31 C.F.R. Chapter X and any other relevant federal law.

(c) A person is not eligible for a license or shall surrender an existing license if, during the previous ten years:

(1) The person or a principal of the person, if a business:

(A) Has been convicted of a felony or a crime involving fraud, deceit, or moral turpitude under the laws of this state, any other state, or the United States;

(B) Has been convicted of a crime under the laws of another country that involves fraud, deceit, or moral turpitude or would be a felony if committed in the United States; or

(C) Has been convicted under a state or federal law relating to currency exchange or transmission or any state or federal monetary instrument reporting requirement; or

(2) The person, a principal of the person, or the spouse of the person or a principal of the person has been convicted of an offense under a state or federal law relating to drug trafficking, money laundering, or a reporting requirement of the Bank Secrecy Act, 12 U.S.C. § 1951 et seq., as amended.

(d) The commissioner will review the application to determine whether the applicant:

(1) Has recklessly failed to file or evaded the obligation to file a currency transaction report as required by 31 U.S.C. §5313 during the previous three years;

(2) Has recklessly accepted currency for exchange, transport, or transmission during the previous three years in which a portion of the currency was derived from an illegal transaction or activity;

(3) Will conduct its authorized business within the bounds of state and federal law, including, but not limited to, section 1501, article fifteen, chapter thirty-one-d of this code;

(4) Warrants the trust of the community;

(5) Has and will maintain a minimum tangible net worth of $50,000 computed according to generally accepted accounting principles as shown by the most recent audited financial statement filed with and satisfactory to the commissioner, and in addition has and will maintain a minimum tangible net worth of $25,000, computed according to generally accepted accounting principles for each office or delegate location other than its principal office at which its licensed business is transacted, except that an applicant for a license or renewal of a license may not be required by this article to maintain a tangible net worth of more than $1 million, computed according to generally accepted accounting principles; and

(6) Does not owe delinquent taxes, fines, or fees to any local or state taxing authority or governmental agency, department, or other political subdivision of this state.

(e) A person is not eligible for a license, and a person who holds a license shall surrender the license to the commissioner, if the person or a principal of the person has at any time been convicted of:

(1) A felony involving the laundering of money that is the product of or proceeds from criminal activity under chapter sixty-one of this code, or a similar provision of the laws of another state or the United States; or

(2) A felony violation of 31 U.S.C. §5313 or 5324, or a rule adopted under those sections.

(f) Before approving an application for a license of an applicant who has less than one year's experience in the proposed business governed by this article as a regulated entity in another state, or whose license has been suspended or revoked by another state, the commissioner may, in his or her discretion, conduct an on-site investigation of an applicant at the sole expense of the applicant and may require the applicant to pay a nonrefundable payment of the anticipated expenses for conducting the investigation. Failure to make the payment or cooperate with the investigation is grounds for denying the application.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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