tight rope walker

SRA gets tough with firms on money laundering compliance

Julie James, Senior Manager, Regulatory Compliance  
tight rope walker
Are you compliant with the Money Laundering Regulations?

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) recently announced that it will be writing to a sample of 400 firms asking them to demonstrate how they are complying with the 2017 Money Laundering Regulations. Firms will have to respond by ensuring they have a money laundering risk assessment in place and that it has been implemented. Failure to comply with the regulations or a lack of engagement to correct issues will result in enforcement action.

Why is this happening?

Following concerns by government of the increasing risk of money laundering facilitated by the legal sector, the Office for Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering Supervision and Financial Action Task Force Mutual Evaluation have encouraged the SRA to actively strengthen its supervision of the sector. As a consequence the SRA has advised firms that they should be prepared for further rigorous checks.

A range of guidance and support materials have been produced to assist firms to comply with their obligations, but it has been made clear that non-compliance will be targeted. Over the past five years more than 60 cases of AML failings have been taken to disciplinary action by the SRA resulting in 40 solicitors being struck off, either voluntarily or through suspension. 

How can we help?

We work with law firms of all sizes to provide the assurance they need to navigate AML requirements. Our multi-disciplinary team has the experience and insight to support you in your interactions with clients and regulators.

Contact us today and we will work with you to:

  • perform an independent assessment of your AML systems, procedures and controls
  • evaluate the effectiveness of your current policies and procedures
  • evaluate your risk-rating methodologies
  • make recommendations for improving existing systems and procedures
  • review the effectiveness of your AML training.

Contact us

Louis Baker
Louis Baker
Partner, Head of Professional Practices