In 2009, New Zealand passed a law called the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 (we call it the AML/CFT Act). Its purpose reflects New Zealand’s commitment to the international initiative to counter the impact that criminal activity has on people and economies within the global community.
Recent changes to the AML/CFT Act mean that from 1 July 2018 law firms are required to comply with its requirements.
The AML/CFT Act requires law firms to assess the money laundering and terrorist financing risks they may face in their businesses and to identify potentially suspicious activity.
To make that assessment law firms must obtain and verify information from prospective and existing clients about a range of things. This is part of what the AML/CFT Act calls “customer due diligence” (‘CDD’).
CDD requires a law firm to undertake certain background checks before providing services to clients. Law firms must also take reasonable steps to make sure the information they receive from clients is correct, and so they need to ask for documents that show this.
TGT Legal will need to obtain certain information from you to meet these legal requirements. This information includes:
To confirm or verify these details, documents such as your driver’s licence or your birth certificate, and documents that show your address, such as a current bank statement will be required.
If you are seeing us about company or trust business, we will need information about the company or trust including the people associated with it (such as directors and shareholders, trustees and beneficiaries).
We may also need to ask you for further information. We will need to ask you about the nature and purpose of the proposed work you are asking us to do for you. Information confirming your source of wealth and source of funds for a transaction may also be necessary to meet the legal requirements.
If we are not able to obtain the required information from you, it is likely we will not be able to act for you.
Before we start working for you, we will let you know what documents and other information we need.
Please contact TGT Legal’s Compliance Officer, Tracy Owen, if you have any queries or concerns.