ICAS launches new annual Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Declaration
The new annual AML Declaration for MLROs is one of three initiatives that will help maintain high standards of AML compliance from ICAS Members and firms.
All ICAS Members and firms will be conscious of the growing prioritisation of anti-money laundering (AML) compliance by the UK Government.
In recent years, ICAS has been in regular contact with the Office of Professional Body AML Supervision (OPBAS) regarding our regulatory oversight of the firms we supervise for AML.
To ensure that we meet the Government’s expectations by providing high-quality supervision, our governance bodies have recently approved three important new initiatives.
AML Annual Declaration
All AML supervisors need information from their firms to allow them to tailor their supervisory activities accordingly. To ensure that ICAS has appropriate information, we are asking our firms' MLROs to complete a new annual AML Declaration, which asks for details about their turnover at the latest set of accounts and the number of clients. It also asks about aspects of AML compliance and risk factors, with most of the questions requiring a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. This information will be used to help us categorise firms from an AML risk perspective and will influence the level of supervision required in the future.
The Annual AML Declaration was issued to MLROs at the end of May, and we ask for early completion, with a deadline of Friday 24 June.
Standalone AML Monitoring process
ICAS is in the process of introducing a standalone AML Monitoring process, which will focus only on the AML compliance processes of ICAS supervised firms. In the short-term, this process will replace Practice Monitoring, to ensure that sufficient time can be allocated to AML compliance.
With AML already constituting a significant part of our Practice Monitoring visits, the impact on firms will not be significant, and will be explained in more detail as and when visits are scheduled. ICAS will take time to review how best to proceed with Practice Monitoring in the future.
AML Regulatory Actions Guidance
ICAS has reviewed and updated its AML Regulatory Actions Guidance document, which explains to firms how issues identified on monitoring visits will be dealt with by ICAS from a regulatory perspective. All firms are encouraged to review the document as part of the monitoring visit process, to properly understand how non-compliance will be addressed.
Questions and feedback
If you have any feedback or questions about the new initiatives, please get in touch with the ICAS Regulation at firstname.lastname@example.org.