|Purpose:||To draw barristers' attention to their obligations in relation to countering money laundering and terrorist financing, and to make practical suggestions in that regard|
|Scope of application:||All practising self-employed barristers|
|Issued by:||The Ethics Committee|
|Status and effect:||Please see the notice at the end of the 'Core Points' section of this document. This is not "guidance" for the purposes of the BSB Handbook I6.4.|
This guidance assists barristers in determining and navigating their obligations under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 and related legislation.
Pages 1-4 sets out when considerations of money laundering and terrorist financing apply to self-employed barristers.
The Important Notice at the end of this page relates to this document.
The Legal Sector Affinity Group (LSAG) comprises all the legal sector supervisors and representative bodies for anti-money laundering/counter-terrorist financing in the UK. The General Council of the Bar of England and Wales is the supervisory authority for anti-money laundering/counter-terrorist financing for its members under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 . In practice this supervision is delegated to the Bar Standards Board.
With the advent of the 2017 Regulations, HM Treasury asked the LSAG to draft a single piece of guidance for their approval, to be applicable to the whole legal sector in the UK. The Legal Sector Anti-Money Laundering Guidance takes account of the changes introduced by the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 which came into force on 26 June 2017. Barristers should refer to those sections of this document which are applicable to them, as well as to the Bar Council’s specific guidance to barristers.
This document was approved by HM Treasury on 5 March 2018.
On 10 January 2020, the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 were updated by the new Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) Regulations 2019. These changes were brought in by the EU’s 5th Money Laundering Directive (which the UK will continue to comply with post-Brexit). Key changes include an expanded definition of tax advisors, further requirements for carrying out Customer Due Diligence, and a new requirement to report discrepancies on the Companies House register. The Bar Council, along with the other legal sector AML supervisors in the UK, are currently updating the joint Legal Sector AML Guidance and agreeing this with HM Treasury.
In the meantime, we have published a joint interim guidance note with the other legal sector supervisors, setting out the key changes brought by the Directive. You can view this note below.
AML COVID-19 Advisory Note for the Legal Sector
In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, particular issues and risks arise for anti-money laundering/counter-terrorist financing, which this note seeks to address.
This note has been drafted in collaboration with the Legal Sector Affinity Group, comprising all UK legal sector supervisors for AML. It has not been approved by HM Treasury.
Download: Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing:Download ( PDF )
Download: Legal Sector Anti-Money Laundering Guidance:Download ( PDF )
Download: 5MLD Key Changes Document:Download ( PDF )
Download: AML COVID-19 Advice for the Legal Sector:Download ( PDF )
This paper only provides professional guidance. Its aim is to assist you in understanding the obligations placed upon you by the primary legislation and the Regulations. It is not “guidance” for the purposes of the BSB Handbook A1, I6.4.
This paper cannot be regarded as a definitive statement of the law or of the effect of the law, and does not comprise, and should not be relied on as giving, legal advice. It has been prepared in good faith, but neither the Bar Council nor any of the individuals responsible for or involved in its preparation accept any legal responsibility or liability for anything done in reliance on it. For fuller information as to the status and effect of this document, please refer to the professional practice and ethics section of the Bar Council’s website here.
If you are unclear as to your obligations you must take independent legal advice from a suitably qualified legal adviser.