Financial Technology Sandbox

Financial Technology Sandbox

 

Introduction

 

In 2019, the Wyoming Legislature enacted HB 57, which created a financial technology sandbox for the testing of innovative financial products and services in Wyoming. An “innovative financial product or service” is defined as a product or service that uses:

 

new or emerging technology, or new uses of existing technology, that provides a product, service, business model or delivery mechanism to the public and has no substantially comparable, widely available analogue in Wyoming, including blockchain technology.”

 

Wyoming's sandbox is tailored to allow individuals and companies with new ideas to bring their product or service to market in a supportive environment that facilitates collaboration, consumer protection and innovation.

 

Overview of Wyoming's Sandbox


Innovative financial products or services relating to banking, trusts/trust companies, consumer credit/lending, money transmitters and mortgages are eligible for participation in the Division's sandbox. Products or services involving securities and business entities/corporate law may be eligible for the Wyoming Secretary of State's sandbox.

 

The initial sandbox testing period is two years, with the possibility of a one-year extension. There is no initial limit on the number of customers that may be served, but the Banking Commissioner may consider whether a limit is appropriate.

 

Except as discussed below, as a condition of eligibility, the Wyoming sandbox requires that: (1) some part of the innovative financial product or service not be allowable under existing statutes or rules; or (2) genuine uncertainty exists regarding the application of a statute or rule to the product or service. These conditions potentially may not apply to an individual or company which is currently operating in the sandbox of another jurisdiction, but the individual or company must still file a sandbox application with the Division.

 

An innovative financial product or service that is permitted under existing law may be authorized by the Division using existing processes outside of the sandbox. The Division has a collaborative licensing process that is experienced with the needs of innovators.

 

The sandbox is open to both individuals and companies who are not currently operating in Wyoming, and individuals and companies who have a Wyoming license, charter or other state/ federal authorization, but wish to offer a new product or service.

 

Application Process

 

The Division began accepting sandbox applications on January 1, 2020.

 

The sandbox application may be downloaded below. Among other requirements, the application requires a $500 application fee, a business plan, product/service details, a standard background check and a consumer protection bond.

 

The statutes and draft rules governing the sandbox may also be downloaded below.

 

The Division encourages potential applicants to contact the Division using the information below before filing an application. After an application is filed, the Division will normally review the application and issue a decision within 90 days.

 

Reciprocity

 

Wyoming law allows for reciprocity/sandbox linking between Wyoming and other state, federal and foreign jurisdictions to allow a product or service to be made available simultaneously in each jurisdiction.

 

A number of other jurisdictions, including Arizona, Utah, the United Kingdom and Singapore, operate similar regulatory sandboxes. The Division will coordinate oversight with other jurisdictions to ensure an efficient regulatory approach.

 

The Division encourages sandbox participants in other jurisdictions to consider Wyoming. Wyoming will soon be a member of the Global Financial Innovation Network and the American Consumer Financial Innovation Network, which will facilitate sandbox reciprocity.

 

Please contact the Division for more information.

 

No-Action Letters/Interpretative Guidance

 

The Division regularly issues no-action letters and interpretative guidance relating to Wyoming law and permissible activities. This process is separate from Wyoming's sandbox.

 

Please contact the Division for more information.

 

Rules Open for Comment

 

The Division issued a Notice of Intent to Adopt Rules governing the sandbox on December 16, 2019. The draft rules are available below and comments on the rules may be submitted to the Division through February 3, 2020.

 

Contact Information

 

If you are considering the Wyoming financial technology sandbox, please contact the Division at (307) 777-7797 or at wyomingbankingdivision@wyo.gov.

 

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Joe Mulberry,
Jan 2, 2020, 1:58 PM
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Joe Mulberry,
Jan 3, 2020, 7:17 AM
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Joe Mulberry,
Jan 9, 2020, 12:15 PM