The amendments for the 5th Money Laundering Directive comes into force on 10th January, and with Christmas and New Year in the meantime, this realistically gives lawyers around 15 working days to get everything that is required into place.
As such, SearchFlow has prepared a handy check list of some of the most important things that lawyers and conveyancers need to be aware of, including:
- Firms require a robust risk assessment
- Staff must know the details of the risk assessment
- Evidence of CDD and EDD through policies and procedures
- Ensure all staff know how client risk can be identified.
SearchFlow has provided some free resources to help lawyers and conveyancers get on top of the compliance responsibilities:
- An on-demand webinar about implementation money laundering regulations with advice from a panel of experts to help lawyers understand the details: https://info.searchflow.co.uk/implementing-aml-regulations-webinar
- Online advice that gives a solid overview of the new AML responsibilities: https://www.searchflow.co.uk/news-and-events/news/2019/june/aml-is-serious-but-it-doesnt-need-to-be-hard-work/
- A Best Practice Guide focusing on the AML risk assessment obligations: https://info.searchflow.co.uk/aml-bestpracticeguide
- Save time and stay compliant by learning how to set up client risk profiles: https://www.searchflow.co.uk/news-and-events/news/2019/june/understanding-risk-profiles/.
Tracy Burtwell, Sales Director at SearchFlow said, “Make sure you have strong AML policies and procedures in place across your entire firm. We recommend you adopt company-wide procedures on how to make Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs); understand how to identify PEPs, relatives and close associates; have processes in place to identify all relevant parties in the transaction, including beneficial owners; arrange appropriate staff training; and put in place strict record keeping and clear audit trails.”
The Solicitor’s Regulation Authority has also launched a Stay Sharp campaign, which raises awareness of the threat money laundering poses to the legal sector. It has published a host of resources to help firms #staySHARP and keep both themselves and the public safe: https://www.sra.org.uk/home/hot-topics/anti-money-laundering/.
With more than one million conveyancing searches and legal reports run every year for over 2,000 legal clients across England and Wales, SearchFlow is regarded as the leading provider of comprehensive property searches, surveys, identity checks and conveyancing insurance solutions and prides itself in working in partnership with its clients to provide solutions that enable competitive advantage.