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Internal Affairs welcomes lawyers to the "new" world of AML/CFT

28 June 2018

Welcome to the "new" world of Anti Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism, the Department of Internal Affairs says in a message to New Zealand's lawyers.

The department is the supervising agency responsible for ensuring that the businesses brought in to phase 2 - including lawyers and conveyancers - are complying with the requirements.

"1 July 2018 marks the day when New Zealand’s anti-money laundering regime starts to expand, to provide much-needed protection against money launderers and terrorism financers," it says.

"From this date, lawyers and conveyancers undertaking captured activities need to be compliant with the obligations under the Anti Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act.   Other professions, such as accountants and real estate agents, are also being progressively brought into the new regime."

The department's Director - AML Group, Mike Stone, says that the department‘s approach is to help lawyers and conveyancers be aware of money laundering and terrorism financing risks and to provide guidance and support to help protect themselves and their businesses.

“Our goal is for all reporting entities to comply with their obligations under the Act - the sooner everyone is able to comply, the sooner we all start making it much harder for  criminals to take advantage,” he says.

The department says it is confident that its responsive regulatory approach works and it will help lawyers and conveyancers to meet their ongoing obligations.

Department of Internal Affairs resources

The department's website contains codes of practice and guidelines to help lawyers understand and meet their obligations.

The Lawyers and Conveyancers Guideline is specifically designed to help lawyers and conveyancers develop awareness of money laundering and terrorism financing and build their compliance programmes to meet their obligations under the AML/CFT Act.

The guidelines are available in PDF (Guideline: Lawyers and Conveyancers - Complying with the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009) and HTML (Guideline: Lawyers and Conveyancers - Complying with the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009).

The department is also available for inquiries by lawyers and conveyancers by email amlcft@dia.govt.nz or on Free phone 0800 257 887.

New Zealand Law Society resources for lawyers

The New Zealand Law Society has produced a range of resources to assist lawyers and their clients with compliance. These are available in our Practice Resources/AML-CFT section.

Last updated on the 28th June 2018