WASHINGTON, DC (March 7, 2018) – Buckley Sandler LLP today formally announced the launch of APPROVED, a new approach to licensing for financial services companies.
Buckley Sandler is building upon years of financial services experience and licensing know-how to offer APPROVED, a technology-enabled, fixed-fee service that will help regulated businesses — mortgage companies, payments companies, consumer and small business lenders, money transmitters, loan servicers, auto finance companies, debt collectors, and fintech companies, among others — better navigate the costly, burdensome, and time-consuming process of securing state licenses. The firm is also developing proprietary software that will make licensing acquisition and maintenance processes more efficient, particularly for businesses pursuing licenses in more than one jurisdiction.
APPROVED is headed by Director of Licensing Tim Lange, who joined Buckley Sandler in December after nine years as the senior director of policy for the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, where he worked extensively with the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System. Lange brings first-hand experience with the NMLS, as well as with the licensing procedures and regulators in virtually every state. His knowledge of state requirements, regulators, and industry participants makes him uniquely qualified to lead APPROVED in developing new and better approaches to state licensing.
“We’ve combined the knowledge, experience, and legal skills of a preeminent financial-services law firm with the efficiencies of a technology company and the bottom-line focus of a licensing company in a regtech business that is the new standard in licensing,” said Lange. “The APPROVED team has decades of legal and licensing experience, and has successfully represented the full spectrum of the nation’s financial services companies.”
APPROVED is backed by Buckley Sandler and its multidisciplinary financial services practices, including its leading licensing and chartering practice.
“Licensing can be a puzzling and costly process for companies, their management, and their investors,” said Buckley Sandler Co-Managing Partner John P. Kromer. “By combining the top-flight talent of Buckley Sandler lawyers and licensing professionals with process enhancements and technology solutions, we intend to reduce the pain points in the licensing process and achieve better outcomes for our clients, all at a lower cost.”
The new service offers a fixed-fee pricing model that will aid businesses in putting together strategic plans for their new initiatives by removing the uncertainty that comes from hourly billing.
“A major challenge for any financial services firm starting up or offering a new product is obtaining the legal authority, usually in the form of a state license or agency approval, to be able to do business,” said Katy Ryan, a partner at Buckley Sandler and a leader of the APPROVED team. “We designed this service to make sure that businesses could secure these necessary approvals with less paperwork and reduced time from company management, while providing greater cost certainty.”