OFAC Yields Little to Financial Industry’s Calls for Looser Self Disclosure Rules

By Brian Monroe

The U.S. Treasury Department finalized a decision Monday to discount voluntary self disclosures by sanctions violators in cases when third parties reveal the same information, despite financial institution concerns. The department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) said it had retained the stipulation despite criticism from banks and other financial institutions following the September 2008 publication of the agency's interim Economic Sanctions Enforcement Guidelines. Overall, OFAC finalized much of the interim guidelines with few changes. Under the finalized rule, companies do not get credit for revealing to OFAC that they have violated U.S. sanctions in cases when a third-party notifies...