Obtaining a payment license

Launching payment business from scratch.
EMI, PI, MSO, MSB licenses

Who needs it

Acquiring a payment license is an optimal solution for financial service providers, fintech companies, and startups that handle payments and money transfers for individuals and companies. If your goal is to have a modern and functional electronic payment service and you aim to get a tool that provides a competitive advantage, elevating your business to a new level, you will need a license for payment services. With it, your company can become a sought-after processing center. This solution allows:

  • Conducting transactions across various payment systems;
  • Issuing and offering payment cards to your clients;
  • Working with a diverse range of global currencies.

Types of Payment Service Licenses

Our company provides legal support in obtaining various payment service licenses in European, Asian, Canadian, and offshore countries. 

In the European Union countries, we specialize in procuring EMI (Electronic Money Institution) and PI (Payment Institution License) for legal entities. 

SBSB Fintech Lawyers assist in acquiring licenses in Lithuania, Spain, the UK, and other European countries.

PI (Payment Institution) is a license for payment institutions which enables them to provide financial intermediary services. A PI license is equivalent to a PSP (Payment Service Provider) license. 

EMI (Electronic Money Institution) is a license for electronic money. It is mandatory if a company plans to open electronic wallets for clients from which funds can be withdrawn. It encompasses all the capabilities of the PI license and provides the right to issue electronic money. 

Generally, acquiring a PI payment license is simpler and cheaper compared to EMI.

Many European countries issue PI and EMI licenses with restrictions; in such cases, they come with labels such as “small,” “restricted,” or “specialised.” These prefixes indicate that the company offers a limited range of services and has limits on the average monthly number of transactions.

SPI (Standard Payment License) and MPI (Major Payment License) in Singapore. 

In Singapore, there are two primary payment institution licenses available: SPI (Standard Payment Institution) and the expanded MPI (Major Payment Institution). SPI (Standard Payment License) – regulates the activities of a company whose transactions do not exceed a limit set by law;

MPI (Major Payment License) – a license for major payment institutions allows the provision of all payment services, and the financial operations of such a company exceed the limits set by law.

MSO (Money Service Operator) license in Hong Kong 

The MSO (Money Service Operator) license allows the provision of financial services in Hong Kong and involves the following activities:

  • Organizing and sending money in fiat currency to any country in the world and within the territory of Hong Kong;
  • Organizing and receiving money in fiat currency within Hong Kong and abroad.

MSB (Money Service Business) License in Canada 

A Money Service Business (MSB) is a financial institution that is not a bank. It allows you to engage in specific financial activities such as:

  • Currency exchange
  • Issuance/redemption of traveler’s checks, money orders, or bank drafts
  • Cashing checks
  • Trading/exchange of virtual currency
  • Merchant acquiring

PSP (Payment Service Provider) License in Mauritius

For clients interested in offshore opportunities, we offer payment license processing for Money Transmission and Payment Processing in Belize. Upon request, we can also assist with licensing in the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, and other offshore jurisdictions.

Main Requirements for Obtaining a Payment Service License

Requirements vary depending on the jurisdiction but have the following basic aspects:

  • Requirements for Directors, Founders, and Shareholders: This includes their nationality, place of residence, reputation (absence of criminal records and debts), competency, experience, and education.
  • Requirements Regarding Company Registration and Office Location: Typically, the company’s place of registration should match the jurisdiction where the license is sought. The same requirements apply to the physical office.
  • Company and Shareholder Reputation Requirements: It is essential to consider whether the company adheres to KYC and AML policies, has income verification, possesses consumer protection mechanisms, maintains confidentiality, etc.
  • Company Documentation Requirements: This includes the presence of corporate documents, a business plan, a financial plan for a specified period, internal procedures and policies, and risk management mechanisms.
  • Financial Requirements: These might encompass capital requirements and the verification of all duties and taxes paid.

Our professional lawyers will help you familiarize yourself with the specific requirements of each jurisdiction and provide all the necessary information.

Cost of Obtaining a Payment License

The cost of getting a payment license varies depending on its type and the chosen jurisdiction. You can get an exact project calculation by consulting our lawyers. After thoroughly examining your project and objectives, the SBSB Fintech Lawyers specialists will select the optimal solution for its successful implementation.

Why Choose Us

The team of experts at SBSB Fintech Lawyers specializes in providing a full range of legal services related to obtaining payment licenses. 

Our comprehensive legal support encompasses all stages of the process – from selecting the most suitable jurisdiction and compiling the required document package, to project registration, obtaining the license, tax burden optimization, accounting, and financial reporting.

We handle all legal issues, accompany the entire licensing process turnkey, and guide the client until the license is obtained. If you are aiming for a swift and efficient launch of your project, contact us, and a team of experienced lawyers will assist in achieving your set objectives.

Close up of hands using laptop and smartphone on desktop with abstract online banking hologram on blurry background. Money, technology and trade concept. Double exposure
EMI license
Знімок екрана 2024-04-03 о 11.06.22
Payment institution license
Знімок екрана 2024-04-03 о 11.09.29
MSB license
Знімок екрана 2024-04-03 о 11.11.22
MSO license

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