AML regulations - Confusion in the estate agent industry

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A recent survey of estate agents has revealed the extent of the industries confusion around current Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulations.

Only 12% of participants achieved a perfect score in the multiple-choice questionnaire, which focused on the 4th Money Laundering Directive (4MLD), while 13% of respondents believed a PEP to be a “Property Exempt Person”.

Under current regulations, which will be updated again this year with 5MLD, Estate agents are required to take a risk based approach to AML, with a process in place to identify the level of risk posed by the individual to the business from an AML perspective, and it is vital that this approach is taken by all staff, from management to those on the front line.

At present, HMRC doesn’t reveal which estate agents have been fined, nor the size of the penalty they have been made to pay, however this is likely to change after HMRC warned that under the new Money Laundering Regulations, a policy is being developed to publish details of those not complying with the MLRs.