Real Estate Agents or Companies

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Real Estate Agents and Business

The Financial Transactions Reporting Act applies to a real estate agent or company when such a person or entity buys or sells real estate for a client.
Your key obligations under this Act are as follows:

  1. Identify and verify your clients;
  2. Monitor your clients transactions;
  3. Maintain proper clients records;
  4. Report transactions to the Financial Intelligence Unit;
  5. Implement appropriate internal controls and systems to protect your business from being used for money laundering and terrorist financing purposes;

Refer to guideline 8 AML Compliance Obligations of Real Estate Agents and Businesses, 01 October 2019 for the detailed requirements.

Client Identification and Verification

You must undertake specific procedures to identify your clients. You must also ensure that client engagement files are opened and maintained in the true name of the client.
For further guidelines refer to:                                                                                   

Monitor your Clients transactions

You must scrutinize or monitor your client's transactions to ensure that the transactions being conducted are consistent with your knowledge of the client and his or her background.

For further guidelines refer to: 

Maintain proper Clients records

You must establish and maintain records of your clients' identity, transactions and records of all reports of transactions made to the FIU. Any enquiries made to your firm by the FIU and other law enforcement agency must also be recorded.
For further guidelines refer to:  Policy Advisory 7/2007- Record Keeping 

Report transactions to the Financial Intelligence Unit

You must report the following types of transactions to the FIU:

  1. All suspicious transactions including attempted transactions; and
  2. All cash transactions of $5,000 and above.
 
For further guidelines refer to: 

Reporting of Terrorist Property

If you have in your possession or your control any property which is owned or is controlled by a terrorist or terrorist group or if you have information on a transaction or proposed transaction relating to a terrorist property, you must report this information to the FIU.

For further guidelines refer to:

Internal Controls and Systems

Other measures that your firm must implement are:

  • Develop and implement internal policies and procedures to comply with the FTR Act and regularly review your compliance with these internal policies and procedures.
  • Appoint a "Compliance Officer" to be responsible for ensuring compliance with the FTR Act and Regulations.
  • Implement adequate recruitment procedures to screen potential employees.
  • Have regular training for relevant staff on anti-money laundering and terrorist financing issues and legislative requirements.
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