Government Publishing Impact on Changes to Money Laundering Regulations

by drivingoffence on January 18, 2017

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In a bid to help businesses, the government is trying to decrease the amount of red tape surrounding companies, while still somehow reinforcing anti-money laundering protocols. Any regulation changes are set to influence the businesses that are at a moderate-to-low risk of money laundering, and therefore are in a safer position to benefit from these new proposals.

The government hopes to make processes more effective and efficient, saving firms approximately £3 million a year. Of course, all businesses should still be vigilant, when it comes to protecting themselves against the dangers of money laundering. These changes came through in 2007.

The government’s post-implementation review called for meetings, evidence, interviews, and conferences. The findings were published in June 2011 and the regulations were set to come to force on the 1st October 2012.

Money Laundering – Why You Should Be Concerned

Many businesses are at risk of being taken advantage of for illegal money laundering. A nominated officer should be regularly checking customers’ identities. Any suspicious activities should be reported to the Serious Organised Crime Agency.

Money laundering involves exchanging money (or assets) that were illegally claimed, so it hides the criminal activity behind them. Money laundering also involves cash used to fund terrorism. Money laundering regulations apply to many business sectors, accountants and estate agents. These companies need to be supervised and will have to register with the HMRC.

Businesses that fall into this category will have to carry out assessments about the risks involved in criminals laundering money. Always checking the identity of customers or business owners is especially important. A customer’s business activities will have to be monitored, and any suspicious activity will have to be reported to the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA).

These businesses will also have to keep all the financial documents that relate to transactions, their customers’ identities, the risk assessment, and any management procedures. Employees will have to undergo rigorous training, so they can deal with accounts competently.

To check your customer’s identity, you’ll need to obtain evidence of their name, their photograph on an official document, their address and date of birth. A passport, utility bills, and bank statements should do the trick. Customer due diligence measures should be instated when a business relationship is established, when a large ‘occasional transaction’ is processed, when something is suspicious, when a customer’s identity is questioned, and when their circumstances change.

Enhanced due diligence should be considered when the customer isn’t physically present for the identification checks. Also, when you’re dealing with someone political or high profile, such as a government minister, you should take extra care.

If you’re found to have been negligent and supporting money laundering, you can get into serious trouble. If any of your employees notice that suspicious activity is going on, it’s their duty to report this to the nominated officer. At the earliest opportunity, tell SOCA and delay the financial transaction in question. Burton Copeland is a great resource for more information so click here for their money laundering page.



A marketing executive working on behalf of criminal defence clients.

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