Changes to practice rules for Scottish solicitors will provide greater clarity on what is required of them in terms of interaction with the Law Society of Scotland and anti-money laundering compliance, the Society said today.

The new rules will take effect from 3 May 2019, coinciding with the setup of a new AML Subcommittee of the Society, whose responsibilities will include ensuring the Society's own compliance with the requirements of the Money Laundering Regulations, as well as protecting the profession and the public interest by dealing properly and promptly with significant cases of non-compliance.

Philip Yelland, executive director of Regulation at the Society, explained that the new rules "don’t place any additional requirements on solicitors and will provide greater transparency on some of the compulsory processes our members must follow in order to comply with the Anti-money Laundering Regulations".

He added: "In our ongoing commitment to effectively and efficiently supervise our members’ anti-money laundering compliance, we have a range of tools and activities at our disposal. However it is important that we are clear on what solicitors have to do to comply. Firms which are already compliant with the AML Regulations, can be assured that they will continue to be so under the new rules."

Following a member consultation in October 2017, the rules were approved at the Society’s special general meeting in January 2018, and by the Lord President in February 2019.