Client AML Requirements
From 1 October 2018, Phase 2 of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 (AML Act) came into effect for Accountants. You may already be familiar with these requirements if you’ve dealt with a bank recently – now the same customer due diligence requirements extend to Accountants and Lawyers, and Real Estate Agents. (https://www.dia.govt.nz/AML-CFT-Homepage)
What do these changes mean for our clients?
We’re required to undertake customer due diligence on our clients, so we’ll be asking you for some identification and in some cases, we will need to verify your source of funds and/or source of wealth. We are unable to start work for new clients until this customer due diligence is carried out. For existing clients, we will be progressively obtaining the same information and are able to continue to do the same work as before. We will also have obligations to report any suspicious activity or transactions to the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU).
Your Situation (New client)
The person meeting with us needs to bring with them photographic identification documents and documentary proof of their residential address. The following document provides further information on acceptable identification and address verification documents.
These are our preferred ID documents however if you don’t have any of these forms of ID available, please discuss other options with us.
For partnerships, we need to identify all individuals involved in the partnership and anyone else who has effective control and is acting on its behalf, even if they aren’t signing on as a client. We will require identification for all of these people.
For companies, we need to identify the shareholders with 25% or more ownership, directors, and anyone else who has effective control of the company and is acting on behalf of the company, even if they aren’t signing on as one of our clients – this is a legal requirement. We will need to see ID for these people as well.
Clubs and Societies
We need to identify the officers of the club who have effective control and are acting on its behalf, even if they aren’t signing on as a client. We will require identification for these people.
We need to identify the beneficiaries, trustees, settlor and anyone who has effective control of the trust and is acting on its behalf, even if they aren’t signing on as a client. We will require identification for these people.
If there are 10+ beneficiaries in the Trust, there is some leniency on what information you need to provide, please discuss this with us further.
For trusts, we also require additional information regarding the trust’s source of wealth and source of funds. The below documents could be supplied:
Property Sale: Settlement statement, Sale & Purchase Agreement, Signed letter from a solicitor
Savings: Bank statements, Payslips
Sales of shares or other investments: Statements on the sale of investments
Inheritance: Will or probate, Correspondence from the solicitor
Company sale: Copy of contract of sale, plus bank statement showing proceeds
Company profit: Latest company accounts
Gift: Donor’s source of wealth (requirements of evidence as stated above for each individual source of wealth and a letter from the donor confirming details of the gift)
Individuals not able to meet with us in person?
There will be times when it’s not possible for us to meet face-to-face, especially for those people we need to ID verify but aren’t signing up as our clients. If we’re not meeting face-to-face, then we will accept certified copies of their ID. Copies of documents must be certified by a person authorised to take a statutory declaration such as a Justice of Peace, Solicitor, Notary Public, Judge or Deputy Registrar.
How can we help you comply?
If you are an existing client, please collate your identification documents, and provide them to us.
Your transactions: If there will be any significant changes in your activity, please advise us in advance. It's not suspicious if we know all about it.
Invoices / receipts: For transactions that are out of the norm from your day-to-day activity – say perhaps you purchased a new car, or you received money from the sale of an asset/shares – it would be useful to provide us with a clear explanation of the transaction or a copy of the invoice or statement (some cloud software will allow you to upload these to the transaction).
Mead Stark has conducted a risk assessment and set out policies, procedures and controls in line with the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act (2009).