This document specifies the minimum elements of an unambiguous legal entity identifier (LEI) scheme to identify the legal entities relevant to any financial transaction.
It is applicable to "legal entities", which include, but are not limited to, unique parties that are legally or financially responsible for the performance of financial transactions or have the legal right in their jurisdiction to enter independently into legal contracts, regardless of whether they are incorporated or constituted in some other way (e.g. trust, partnership, contractual). It includes governmental organizations, supranationals and individuals when acting in a business capacity, but excludes natural persons. It also includes international branches as defined in 3.5.
The LEI is designed for automated processing. It can also be conveniently used in other media interchange when appropriate (e.g. paper document exchange).
NOTE Examples of eligible legal entities include, without limitation:
- all financial intermediaries;
- banks and finance companies;
- international branches;
- all entities that issue equity, debt or other securities for other capital structures;
- all entities listed on an exchange;
- all entities that trade financial instruments or are otherwise parties to financial transactions, including business entities, pension funds and investment vehicles such as collective investment funds (at umbrella and sub-fund level) and other special purpose vehicles that have a legal form;
- all entities under the purview of a financial regulator and their affiliates, subsidiaries and holding companies;
- sole traders (as an example of individuals acting in a business capacity);
- counterparties to financial transactions.
 As stated by the LEI Regulatory Oversight Committee on 30 September 2015.