Today, you have new rights when you send money to family or others outside the United States.
These protections come from a new federal rule that was finalized by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau earlier this year.
The rule applies to electronic money transfers sent by people in the United States to people or businesses in other countries. In general, the rule covers transfers sent by companies such as money transmitters, banks, credit unions and other financial services companies that consistently send more than 100 international money transfers each year.
If you make transfers covered by the rule, you will receive some new protections. You’ll get – in writing – free, upfront information about the exchange rate, fees, and taxes you will pay, and the amount to be received on the other end. Here’s an example of what you will see.
You’ll generally have up to 30 minutes to cancel transfers at no cost. If there’s an error, you get 180 days to report the problem to the company. Once you contact the company, it has 90 days to investigate and tell you what it finds. In some cases, you could get a refund or have the transfer sent again.
People send tens of billions of dollars from the United States to foreign countries each year, and we’re doing our best to get the word out about these new consumer protections. Do you know people who might want more information? There are online Q&As here. We also have free materials in English, Spanish, Chinese, French-Creole, and Tagalog. Check them out and download them here. (We’ll take bulk orders there soon.) And spread the word, in your real and online worlds.