Obtaining a financial license in United Kingdom | Law&Trust International

Until 2013, the Financial Services Authority was responsible for the provision of services in the sphere of financial control and financial activities in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. With the financial reform, these functions were transferred to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This body is an independent non-governmental organization whose powers and authority relate to:

  • establishment of minimum standards and requirements in the field of financial market;
  • regulation of actions in the field of marketing of financial products;
  • control over companies and private entrepreneurs;
  • establishment and application of sanctions.

In the process of doing business and specification of specific types of activities, especially those related to the work associated with the provision and acceptance of financial transactions (cash transfer, money transfer operations, credit transactions, etc.), the company needs to obtain appropriate financial license. In this case, the appropriate authorized institution for the request is the FCA.

This financial license should be owned by companies which services also include providing money transfers, issuing non-bank credit cards and providing merchant accounts. When applying for a financial license, you must pay attention to the total amount of financial transactions within a month. If it exceeds 3 million euros, the company needs to receive the status of a Payment Institution (PI). Otherwise, it can be qualified as a Small Payment Institution (SPI).

Requirements for the company to comply with the status of PI are as follows:


  • Form - limited or partnership;
  • Good reputation of directors and managers who were not convicted of financial crimes;
  • Registered office in the UK;
  • Clear understanding of the person that is the ultimate beneficiary.

Depending on the specific type of financial activity of the company, the amount of the authorized capital must be equal to and, in the course of the company's activity, not be lower than:

  • € 20,000 - if the company is engaged in money remittance;

  • € 50,000 - in case of transactions, when the payer's consent is received by means of telecommunication modes due to the IT technologies using which the payments were made;

  • € 125,000 - other financial services not included in the categories listed above.

For authorization as a financial institution, it is necessary to submit the Application for Authorization as a Payment Institution to the Financial Conduct Authority. The application should describe the activities of the company in detail, its mechanism and structure of work, indicate the persons responsible for providing payment services, as well as information on persons who own more than 10% of the company's shares. Also, it is necessary to confirm the intention to receive an account in a member state of the European Economic Area, and also to fill in the PSD Individual Form for each member responsible for providing payment services.
The amount of the state registration fee is £ 1500 - £ 5000 depending on the type of company's activity. The completed application is considered within 7 days. Further, the FCA within 3 months (if the applicant provided complete information) or 12 months (if the applicant provided incomplete information) notifies the acceptability of registration.
In the event that the monthly turnover of the company's payment transactions does not exceed 3 million pounds, the company can be qualified according to the status of Small Payment Institution, which is characterized by a more simplified registration procedure. The amount of the state fee is £ 500. If you want to quickly obtain a financial license in the UK, feel free to contact Law&Trust International.
The experience and professionalism of the specialists of our company will guarantee your success in the financial services market. Our principles are legality, confidentiality, reliability. Our main priority is your comfort. Therefore, we undertake all procedures provided for by the rules for obtaining a license in the UK. And you get a turnkey service from us.

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