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How long does the registration process take?

Initial applications for registration as a Futures Commission Merchant, Swap Dealer, Major Swap Participant, Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer, Introducing Broker, Commodity Pool Operator, Commodity Trading Advisor, Associated Person, Principal, Floor Broker or Floor Trader and for NFA Membership can be filed once entry of the required data is complete. APs who are eligible will receive a temporary license as soon as the application is filed. Guaranteed IBs that are eligible will receive a temporary license as soon as all required filings have been made for it and its principals. However, it may take six weeks or longer to complete all background checks before NFA can grant a full registration to initial applicants.

If an individual is already registered or listed as a principal, it is possible to obtain registration in a new category as soon as the application is filed. For example, an individual who is already listed as a principal, has no fitness information that needs to be reviewed, and has satisfied the proficiency requirements can be registered as an AP when the application is filed. Similarly, a registered firm may be able to add an additional registration category the next day. For example, a registered IB with no disciplinary information to be reviewed that files an application to be registered as a CTA will be registered as a CTA overnight if there are sufficient funds in its prepaid account to cover the application fee.

For other firms, the length of the registration process depends on the completeness and content of the information filed by the firm and on the complexity of the firm's business.

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