A new anti-money laundering (AML) certificate is to be introduced for law firms this month to strengthen AML procedures and meet the requirements of the 2017 Money Laundering Regulations.

The Law Society of Scotland’s AML Certificate is a questionnaire designed to collect relevant data about firms which carry out work within the scope of the 2017 Regulations, their customers and the services they provide.

The responses will allow the Law Society, as an HM Treasury authorised AML supervisor, to develop an AML risk profile of each firm currently supervised and of the profession as a whole. The new process will inform the Law Society’s risk-based approach to AML supervision moving forward.

As part of the new, compulsory process, firms will be required to upload their own firm-level risk assessment in addition to their completed AML questionnaire. This is to help solicitors identify and assess the risks of money laundering and terrorist financing which may affect their business. It is an essential part of the AML Certificate submission and is key to determining how firms apply a risk-based approach and put the right policies and procedures in place to ensure AML compliance.

The new online AML Certificate portal will be launched on 22 October 2018. Firms are required to complete the certificate by 21 December 2018.

A new AML toolkit has been published on our website providing information, guides and additional resources to help Scottish solicitors meet their AML requirements. These include:

  • Example risk assessment templates
  • Treasury approved UK legal sector guidance
  • AML good practice guides
  • NCA suspicious activity reporting information
  • Information on how to spot fake identification documents

Find out more about AML best practice and completing the new AML Certificate on our website.

AML Certificate

The AML Certificate is a questionnaire about your clients, products, services and the way in which you deliver those services. It is a crucial tool in our statutory obligation to deploy a risk-based approach to our AML Supervision and must be completed by those firms in the scope of the AML Regulations. This year the submission deadline is 30 April 2021.