Permissibility To Establish Representative Office - q3 1999

By the Division of Banks

Mass. Gen. Laws chapter 167, section 37 provides, in pertinent part, that a foreign corporation shall not conduct the business of a savings bank, cooperative bank, savings and loan association, credit union, trust company or banking company unless otherwise authorized to do so under the laws of the Commonwealth. It is the position of the Division that a foreign bank may establish a representative office in the Commonwealth where the representatives would not execute necessary paperwork to establish a contractual agreement, would not accept funds in any form, would not assign account numbers, and would not receive money for deposit in Massachusetts. Such activity does not constitute the business of banking and the representative office would not constitute a branch office.