New OFAC Regulations Removes Some Issues For US Financial Institutions; May Create Opening For Resumption Of Credit Card/Charge Card Transactions

25 November 2015

Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of The United States Department of the Treasury

52. Is a financial institution required to independently verify that an individual’s travel is authorized when processing Cuba travel-related transactions?

No. A financial institution may rely on U.S. travelers to provide their certifications of authorized travel directly to the person providing travel or carrier services when processing Cuba travel-related transactions, unless the financial institution knows or has reason to know that the travel is not authorized by a general or specific license.

The CACR requires persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction providing travel or carrier services to retain for at least five years from the date of the transaction a certification from each customer indicating the section of the CACR that authorizes the person to travel to Cuba. See § 515.572(b). U.S. travelers utilizing a general or specific license are also required to retain for five years records associated with their travel to Cuba.