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Bipartisan Senate ‎and House Bills Tackle Abusive Shell Company Practices
by Abby Wilhelm
Thursday Aug 3rd, 2017 1:20 PM
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced the Corporate Transparency Act.
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced the Corporate Transparency Act. The bill requires corporations to register the identities of the owners who benefit from the business. The information is then available for law enforcement to identify those who are responsible for crime and corruption. ‎Representatives Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Peter King (R-NY) introduced companion legislation in the House in June.

“When we can't find the names of people who actually own and benefit from a company, we can't find perpetrators who used the company to take advantage of poor and vulnerable people," noted Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of the religious development group Jubilee USA. "Anonymous shell companies can be used by corrupt government officials to steal money from their people and by human traffickers who are trying to secretly move money.”

Both bills in front of Congress allow the US Treasury Secretary to collect "beneficial ownership" information for all US companies unless the state where the company was formed opted to collect this information instead.

“The developing world loses a trillion dollars a year because of secrecy, tax evasion and corruption. This legislation helps address one of the ways money secretly leaves poor economies," noted LeCompte. “Senator Rubio and Senator Wyden are moving legislation forward that protects the poor, defends human rights and makes us all safer.”