Understanding Laws for Reporting Large Cash Transactions

Large Cash Transactions

What Your Business Needs to Know

As a business owner, understanding the laws surrounding reporting cash transactions is not just good practice – it is a legal obligation that must not be overlooked. Under federal law, a person is required to report cash transactions of more than $10,000, whether in a single transaction or a series of related transactions. This gets done by filing the IRS Form 8300 within 15 days of receiving the cash. Businesses can file the form electronically using the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) Electronic Filing System.

The Basics: Cash Transactions

For purposes of reporting cash transactions, the term “person” covers a wide range of entities, including individuals, companies, corporations, partnerships, associations, trusts, or estates. Tax-exempt organizations are also persons and may be required to report certain transactions. The term “cash” refers to any coin or currency of either the U.S. or any other country. Additionally, cash transactions include cashier’s checks, money orders, and traveler’s checks. However, personal checks are not considered cash for reporting purposes.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

Failure to comply with the reporting requirements may be punishable by civil or criminal penalties. A negligent failure to timely file, include all required information, or include correct information will result in a civil penalty of $310.00 per return. Intentional disregard of filing requirements constitutes a felony and is subject to criminal sanctions. Individuals may face fines ranging from $25,000-$100,000, along with possible imprisonment for up to 5 years.

Additionally, a person who attempts to interfere with or prevent the proper filing of Form 3800 may also be subject to penalties. This includes structuring the payments to break up a large transaction in an attempt to disguise the true amount of cash involved.

Mitigating Risks and Ensuring Compliance

To avoid the penalties associated with non-compliance, a business must report the cash transaction within 15 days of receipt. If the 15th day falls on a weekend or holiday, the report must be filed on the next business day. Adherence to satisfactory recordkeeping can help ensure compliance. Businesses should keep a copy of every Form 3800 filed for at least five years from the date filed. In essence, the penalties for failing to report large cash transactions far outweigh the temporary inconvenience of filing the necessary form. Consulting with an attorney can assist you in navigating the financial regulations in place to help protect you and your business every
step of the way.

EPGD Business Law is located in beautiful Coral Gables. Call us at (786) 837-6787, or contact us through the website to schedule a consultation.

*Disclaimer: this blog post is not intended to be legal advice. We highly recommend speaking to an attorney if you have any legal concerns. Contacting us through our website does not establish an attorney-client relationship.*

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Eric Gros-Dubois

Founding partner Eric Gros-Dubois established EPGD Business Law in 2013. With over a decade of experience expanding the firm and leading it to its current success, Eric now primarily manages the corporate division of EPGD. Given Eric’s educational background, holding both a JD and MBA, combined with his own unique experience of starting a business from scratch and growing it to a multi-million dollar firm, he brings a specialized and invaluable perspective to those seeking legal assistance for themselves and their businesses. Having now instilled his same values in our team of skilled corporate associates, Eric leads a firm that is always ready, willing, and equipped to handle any and every legal matter that a business owner may have.


*The following comments are not intended to be treated as legal advice. The answer to your question is limited to the basic facts presented. Additional details may heavily alter our assessment and change the answer provided. For a more thorough review of your question please contact our office for a consultation.



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