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OFT warns estate agents on penalties for non-compliance

Where the OFT believes estate agents and certain credit lenders are not registered but are carrying on a supervised activity, it will give them 21 days to apply for registration or to explain why they are exempt from registration, before notifying them of the intention to apply a financial penalty.

Mario Tsavellas, OFT Director of Anti-Money Laundering, said:

‘Estate agents and certain credit lenders have an obligation to comply with statutory obligations under the Money Laundering Regulations 2007, which includes registration with the OFT. Where businesses choose to ignore OFT warnings and do not register, we will impose civil financial penalties. It is vital that the OFT continues to identify those who should register, so that the OFT can supervise them effectively and reduce the risk of money laundering and terrorist financing in these sectors.’

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  1. I fail to understand the real need for agents to have to subscribe to this. The agent is there to agree a deal admittedly, but ultimately doesn’t actually handle cash and in the vast majority of cases invoices their fee notes to be settled via solicitors upon exchange /completion of a transaction. I can see fully why the legal profession need to be a party to the regulations as they oversee the actual transfer of funds and are possibly party to the origin of those funds, but agents – no.