On November 5, 2014, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a no-action letter granting relief from registration as a commodity trading advisor (CTA) to family offices that qualify for the family office exemption under the Securities and Exchange Commission's family office rule, 17 CFR 275.202(a)(11)(G)-1. A family office is defined generally under the SEC rule as a professional organization that only has family clients, is wholly-owned by family clients, and is exclusively controlled by one or more members of a family and/or family entities. The new letter expands upon the CFTC's November 2012 letter, which provided no-action relief to family offices from registration as a commodity pool operator (CPO).
To obtain relief from CTA registration, a family office must file a claim with the Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (Division) that must:
- State the name, main business address, and main business telephone number of the family office claiming relief;
- State the capacity (i.e., CTA) and, where applicable, the name of the pool(s) for which the claim is being filed;
- Be electronically signed by the family office; and
- Be filed with the Division using the email address firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line "Family Office CTA Relief."