On 29 November 2017 BaFin published the long-awaited updated guidance notice regarding the German Payment Services Supervisory Act (“ZAG”). In its notice, BaFin does not just address the changes required due to the implementation of PSD2. It also provides information on changes in its administrative practice in respect of situations that are already currently included in the ZAG. And it there definitely are changes to its administrative practice! Fancy a few examples?

Explanations regarding Payment Initiation Services

Is this the all-clear for Technical Service Providers that only process payment data? Possibly. In any case, the BaFin states that a Payment Initiation Service requires technical access to a payment account. Network providers and Internet-PSPs can therefore start their Christmas holidays early, right?

Information about Account Information Service Providers

Do banking software providers now require a permit? This depends, if you ask the BaFin:

The provision of software which exclusively runs on computers in the sphere of influence of the payment services user is therefore not affected.

Understood. So this means that a web-based information service (web app) requires a registration or permit but a smartphone app or the good old WISO-CD [Note: software tool in Germany that helps you to prepare your tax return] does not. That makes sense, doesn’t it?

Significant restriction of the intra-group exemption

This may not sound particularly interesting. However, if we understand the BaFin correctly, many companies that have outsourced their payment services to other companies within their group require a permit in future. This will not only delight retail chains.

Have we sparked your interest? Stay with us! PayTechLaw will further analyse the guidance notice for you in the next few days.