AML/CTF Programs, Independent Reviews, Guidance & Support

We can assist you to create and implement an AML/CTF program which complies with Australian AML/CTF requirements, and is also tailored to reflect the specific money laundering and terrorism financing (ML/TF) risks that your business faces.

We provide guidance on implementing risk-based AML/CTF procedures (for example, a customer on-boarding/application procedure), as well as in relation to your AML/CTF reporting obligations (including Suspicious Matter Reports and International Funds Transfer Instruction reports).  We also work with you to create a comprehensive ML/TF Risk Register, which is also tailored for your business, and forms a crucial part of your AML/CTF Program.  We also consider your existing management oversight and governance structure, and recommend any changes or enhancements to your current procedures, which ensure that you cover off on your AML/CTF obligations.

We also provide wider advice on Financial Crime matters, including the application of Proceeds of Crime legislation.

Have you received a letter from AUSTRAC?  Perhaps you need assistance with AUSTRAC enrolment or registration on the Remittance Sector Register or Digital Currency Exchange Register, or with ensuring that your International Funds Transfer Reports comply with the AML/CTF laws and with AUSTRAC specifications?

If you have unwittingly breached the AML/CTF laws, the way you negotiate with AUSTRAC can have a substantial effect on how AUSTRAC responds.

We help clients liaise with AUSTRAC, and also assist with preparing comprehensive Remediation Plans to address any AUSTRAC concerns.

AML/CTF Independent Reviews, AML/CTF Program and Risk Registers

Our lawyers and consultants can help:

  • Assist you to respond to AUSTRAC regulatory action
  • Review an AUSTRAC registration and enrolment application
  • Provide you with a template AML/CTF Program for your specific industry
  • Draft, review and tailor your AML/CTF Program
  • Draft a response to AUSTRAC investigations, requests for information, and other queries
  • Respond to AUSTRAC notices (including an AUSTRAC Notice to suspend registration)
  • Act as a liaison between you and AUSTRAC
  • Assist with preparing and implementing a Remediation Plan to address any issues raised by AUSTRAC
  • Advise on Proceeds of Crime issues

Complying with your AML/CTF obligations

To help you comply with your AML/CTF obligations, we can provide you with:

  • Industry-specific AML/CTF Program templates and assistance with tailoring the documents to reflect the specific ML/TF risks that your business faces
  • AML/CTF advice such as:
    • Whether the Australian AML/CTF laws apply to your business
    • The nature of the client’s AML/CTF obligations and how the client complies with those obligations
    • Assistance with responding to an AUSTRAC investigation
  • An Independent Review of the AML/CTF Program
  • How to ensure that you are complying with your AML/CTF reporting obligations, in particular, in relation to International Funds Transfer Instruction (IFTI) Reports
  • Advising on a breach by a client of the AML/CTF laws

AML/CTF Programs

We build AML/CTF programs that comply with Australian requirements (and New Zealand, upon request).  One of our roles is providing ongoing guidance and support in reviewing or auditing your existing AML/CTF program. We provide you with practical recommendations which flow from our review, which impact both the content of the Program and how it should be implemented, to ensure compliance with the AML/CTF laws. We also regularly conduct independent reviews as required by the AML/CTF legislation.

We offer AML/CTF Programs for the following industries:

For a more tailored AML/CTF Program for your business, or to discuss your requirements, book in a consultation to speak to one of our AML/CTF experts.

AML/CTF Independent Reviews

What is an AML/CTF independent review?

AUSTRAC explains that an independent review is an impartial assessment of Part A of your AML/CTF Program, and considers the effectiveness of Part A of the Program, whether Part A complies with the AML/CTF laws, whether your business has effectively implemented the policies and procedures set out in Part A, and whether your business has complied with the obligations set out on Part A.

Who can conduct an independent review?

The person that you appoint to conduct the independent review can be either an internal employee, or an external consultant, however, they must be independent.

How often should an independent review be conducted?

In our experience, most reporting entities determine that a 2-3 year period between reviews is appropriate.

For more information on AML/CTF independent reviews, and what’s involved, read our article “Why your AML/CTF Program needs to be independently reviewed regularly“.

AML/CTF Training

Our lawyers are also trainers!   Under our compliance business, Holley Nethercote Compliance, we train AML/CTF officers and compliance staff on the obligations of the reporting entity under the AML/CTF Act and Rules.

Our upcoming public AML/CTF workshop is on Tuesday, 14 November 2023 from 2:00pm – 5:00pm.  To find out more about the training and to register, please click here.

AML/CTF - What you need to know

Hear from one of our leading experts in AML/CTF, Naomi Fink, about how the regime applies to financial services businesses – and what needs to happen if you do need to register with AUSTRAC.

AML/CTF and Digital Currency Exchanges

Providing a spot crypto exchange with a jurisdictional link to Australia triggers the need to register with AUSTRAC as a Digital Currency Exchange.  We have helped set up a large number of Australian and international DCEs.  Our firm authored Blockchain Australia’s Code of Conduct which applies to DCEs if they want to “raise the regulatory bar” and improve their relationships with banks and other stakeholders.

AML/CTF (Financial Crime)

Useful resources

Blog update
Blog update
Keeping your AML/CTF Program up-to-date

Outsourcing KYC obligations If you are bound by the Australian Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF) legislation[1], (that is, you are a “reporting entity”), you must have in place policies…

Blog update
Blog update
Room to improve AML/CTF Systems and Controls - Our take on AUSTRAC’s Risk Assessment

  In July 2017, AUSTRAC released its latest money laundering and terrorism financing (ML/TF) risk assessment which focuses on the securities and derivatives sector.  Similar to past risk assessments released…

Blog update
Blog update
Why your AML/CTF Program needs to be independently reviewed regularly

We have conducted lots of independent reviews.  In this article we explain who the review obligations apply to, who can undertake them, where they come from, and what to expect.…