AML/CFT in full swing

The requirements of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 (AML/CFT) are now in full force for lawyers. This will mean that next time we do work for you, we may need to collect more information from you.

AML/CFT introduces practical measures aimed at eradicating the ability for criminals to profit from their crimes, and also to prevent the supply of money to terrorist organisations.  You have probably noticed that banks implemented these requirements several years ago. 

If you are a new Cavell Leitch client, before we can act for you, we will have to conduct customer due diligence (CDD) on you.  The extent of CDD required depends on who you are (for example are you a trust or a person), and the type of work you are doing.

Even if you are a long-standing Cavell Leitch client, next time you provide us with instructions, require money to flow through our trust account, or otherwise change the nature of your relationship with us, we will have to conduct CDD before we can proceed. 

It is important that you comply with these requirements otherwise we cannot act for you.  In general, once CDD is conducted it won’t have to be done again for some time. 

Conducting CDD involves asking you to provide some form of identification and proof of address, in order for us to verify your identity.  Depending on the type of work you are doing, we may also need to ask you some questions about the purpose of the work and where your wealth is coming from. 

This table below provides an overview of the type of information we will require, however, depending on the circumstances, these requirements might change:

Client Type

Information required


Proof of your identity and date of birth – for example, a driver’s licence, passport or firearms licence.

Proof of your address – such as a recent (within the last 12 months) utility bill, rates demand, government agency or bank statement


We are required to conduct CDD on those people who have certain control over the Company, such as directors, key management and some shareholders.

For these people, we will require the same evidence required of ‘Individuals’, as outlined above.  We may also be required to ask questions about who your work is benefiting.


We are also required to conduct CDD on those who have control over trusts, including trustees, settlors and some beneficiaries. 

For trustees and settlors, we will require the same evidence outlined above under ‘Individuals’.  Less information will be required from some beneficiaries.

We have been working hard to ensure this is a simple process for our clients.  While we appreciate that complying with our requests may be inconvenient and time consuming for you, it is mandatory for all law firms to comply with the new legislation.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Cavell Leitch team.  

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Copyright © Cavell Leitch. All rights reserved. Redistribution is only permitted with express written permission. For enquiries please contact us. This article by its nature cannot be comprehensive and cannot be relied on by clients as advice. It is provided to assist clients to identify legal issues on which they should seek legal advice. Please consult the professional staff of Cavell Leitch for advice specific to your situation.