Prescribed businesses are advised that the Commission has made two changes to the Handbook for Legal Professionals, Accountants and Estate Agents on Countering Financial Crime and Terrorist Financing (“the Handbook”). The changes are:
- the inclusion of a new section in chapter 4 of the AML/CFT handbook in respect of existing clients (i.e. clients taken on prior to the coming into force of the AML/CFT framework for prescribed businesses in 2008) with whom a continuing business relationship exists; and
- the removal of Greece from Appendix C to the Handbook.
As explained in our consultation letter of 1 July, the rules in the new section in chapter 4 of the Handbook require prescribed businesses to apply CDD requirements to existing clients taken on before the autumn of 2008 on the basis of materiality and risk and to undertake CDD on such existing relationships at appropriate times (ie a trigger event). For example, this would be where a significant transaction takes place, where there is a change in the relationship or where the prescribed business becomes aware that the CDD held is not appropriate to the assessed risk of the relationship.
Prescribed businesses are advised that, as identified in Instruction Number 8 issued on 5 July, Greece continues to be included on the list of jurisdictions which the Financial Action Task Force considers to have strategic AML/CFT deficiencies. The Commission has therefore decided to remove Greece from Appendix C to the Handbook.
Whilst existing business relationships through introducers in Greece may be maintained, prescribed services businesses are not able to accept any new introduced business with entities in Greece even where the introducer is an existing introducer.
The revised handbook for prescribed businesses is available on the legislation and guidance page of the website together with a version of the handbook which includes coloured text to show the changes referred to above.