Liquidation of unauthorised institutions

FINMA is responsible for winding up and if necessary liquidating institutions operating on the financial market without a licence.

To protect the integrity of the financial markets it is necessary to remove institutions operating without the required licence from the market straight away. In doing so, FINMA attempts where possible to consider the interests of investors and creditors, who are often victims of malpractice.

Winding up unauthorised institutions

In accordance with Article 3 let. a FINMASA, persons and legal entities are subject to supervision by FINMA if the financial market legislation requires them to be licensed, recognised or registered by FINMA. If an institution operates without a licence despite the requirement, it is subject to supervision by FINMA in the same way as a comparable authorised institution.


FINMA orders the compulsory liquidation of an unauthorised institution. It can also place it into bankruptcy if the criteria for bankruptcy is met, for example over-indebtedness or illiquidity. A recovery of the unauthorised institution is not considered.