Becoming a Clearing Member

OCC provides central counterparty clearing and settlement services to multiple exchanges and platforms for options, financial and commodity futures, security futures and securities lending transactions. OCC clearing members comprise approximately 105 of the largest U.S. broker-dealers, futures commission merchants and non-U.S. securities firms that serve both professional traders and public customers.

Begin Membership Process

Benefits of OCC Membership include:

  • Financial guarantee and safeguards mitigate counterparty credit risk
  • Utility model allows for low transaction fees
  • Cross-margin facility provides margin offset
  • Central processing across multiple exchanges allows for single interface
  • Direct access to reports allows greater control of operations and margins
  • Fungibility across U.S. listed options market
  • Resilient technology (Internet-based, real-time ENCORE clearing system)
  • World Class customer service

Requirements of Membership

  • Applicant must be a broker dealer or FCM registered with the SEC or CFTC, or a non-U.S. securities firm.
  • Applicant must meet minimum net capital requirements (initial requirement is a minimum of $2,500,000.
  • Applicant must have qualified staff and adequate facilities to self-clear options and interface with OCC and other Clearing Members (or contract for a facilities management arrangement).


  • Must Enter all Applicable Information into the OCC Pre-Qualification Online Application
  • Must submit appropriate paperwork received from Pre-Qualification
  • FOCUS Reports
  • Audited Financial Statements
  • The Findings of Securities and Commodities Regulators
  • $4,000 Non-refundable Qualification Fee
  • Resumes of Staff Responsible for P&S, Positions Reconciliation and Margin

Site Visit

The Credit Risk and Member Services Departments conduct an on-site visit at the firm. The visit addresses financial and operations requirements of OCC.


The Applicant's Designated Examining Authority (DEA) and/or Designated Self-Regulatory Organization (DSRO) is contacted for pertinent information that OCC should consider during its due diligence review.

The due diligence of the Applicant and any findings associated with the applicant are submitted in a memo to the Board Risk Committee for review. If a request is not made to review the application at an upcoming meeting of the Board Risk Committee, the Office of the Executive Chairman maintains delegated authority to approve or disapprove the application.

Interested Applicants are directed to OCC's By-Laws (PDF) and Rules (PDF) for exact requirements and corresponding interpretations. If you would like to apply for OCC Membership the first step is completing our Pre-Qualification Online Application.


Begin Membership Process


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