VinciWorks understands that the UK is unlikely to introduce its own version of the Mandatory Disclosure Rules (UK MDR) before 2023.

As the government has changed and the Treasury has fully changed its Ministers, including the Financial Secretary to the Treasury who is responsible for tax policies, the official position is that the government is still reviewing the consultation responses. It is unlikely that we can expect any serious developments in relation to UK MDR in the near future.

VinciWorks is in regular discussion with HMRC and will be providing updates when we have more information.

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This week we surveyed a wide range of UK law firms on their approach to AML. The survey explored firms’ biggest AML challenges, different approaches to risk assessments, ongoing monitoring, AML audits and more.

Key findings:

  • The biggest AML challenge is identifying the source of funds/wealth
  • Matter risk assessments are a struggle for 50% of firms
  • 58% of firms carry out independent audits through an external firm
  • 28% of firms feel they wouldn’t be prepared if they received a notification of an SRA visit
  • 64% of firms don’t believe the SRA and Law Society provide enough guidance to help firms stay AML compliant

Download results and summary

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VinciWorks ESG survey results

Now more than ever, companies are expected to have a positive impact on society and the planet. Customers are increasingly considering sustainability in their purchases, with upwards of 75% of millennials reporting they do so. Investors also expect companies to understand these issues, with the value of sustainable fund assets doubling over the last two years to $2.7 trillion according to Morningstar.

But addressing these stakeholders and attempting corporate sustainability can be an alphabet soup of different terms, topics, and targets. Two of the most common buzzwords are CSR and ESG. While they are often used synonymously, CSR and ESG are distinct concepts. In this article, we will explore their definitions, whether we need both, and how they are evolving.

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ESG – Environmental, Social and Governance – helps businesses measure their impact on the world. It goes broader than profit and loss and is more detailed than corporate social responsibility.

Over the past year, we have fielded hundreds of questions during our ESG webinars. From how to get started to understanding how to choose the proper ESG framework, businesses at all stages in their ESG journey have unanswered questions.

In this webinar, Director of Learning and Content Nick Henderson and Director of Product Alona Stern answered attendees’ ESG questions.

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In July 2021, HM Treasury launched a new AML consultation entitled ‘Amendments to the Money Laundering Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds Regulations 2017 (MLRs)’. The planned updates, most of which are coming into force on 1 September, are required to ensure that the UK continues to meet international AML standards, whilst also clarifying how the UK’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing (AML/CTF) regime works. UK law firms continue to be at the forefront of the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.

In this webinar, Lindsay Taylor from Compliance Office and Nick Henderson from VinciWorks gave a thorough overview of the latest in AML compliance and what’s changing.

The webinar covered:

  • The latest amendments to the LSAG guidance and what they mean
  • An overview of MLRs and what’s changing
  • Lessons learnt from previous AML fines
  • How recent sanctions on Russia affect client onboarding and ongoing monitoring
  • Answering attendee questions – send your question in via the registration form

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VinciWorks’ AML client onboarding solution

AML on-boarding solution dashboard

Law firms, accountancy firms and financial corporations are required to conduct risk assessments, client due diligence (CDD) and ongoing monitoring of their clients. The precise processes for CDD and risk assessments are often complex and vary greatly, depending on industry and jurisdiction. Organisations often struggle to implement systems which adequately incorporate all the interconnected requirements of these two vital AML components.

VinciWorks’ AML client onboarding solution can be used to enhance both the risk assessment and document collection aspects of client onboarding. As specific risk factors differ, Omnitrack offers unique workflows built for several industries based on extensive research into industry best practice and regulator guidance.

People can be marginalised for many different reasons. This is often because they have a particular characteristic and are oppressed because of it. Racism, homophobia, transphobia, religious hatred, sexism, misogyny, ageism, and ableism are all forms of oppression which can marginalise someone.

Allyship is a process of building relationships with marginalised people and standing in solidarity with them. Allyship takes work. It requires active efforts to create trust, be consistent, and be accountable. 

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Anti-money laundering rules require trust registration by 1 September

Around a million trusts have not yet been registered with HMRC ahead of the 1 September 2022 deadline, according to official figures. The Trustee Registration Service began registering trusts in 2017, but has only registered just over 200,000 despite over 61,000 being added in the first six months of this year.

The ubiquity of trusts for tax and estate planning means many people may not realise they have a trust, or that they are required to register it with the TRS. Initially, registration was only required if the trust was liable to pay UK tax, such as income tax, capital gains tax or inheritance tax.

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Symbol of corporate social responsibility

Having an environmental sustainability policy is a valuable way for a company to clarify its commitment to managing its environmental impact. It can also serve as a valuable component of your ESG toolbox.

An environmental sustainability policy can help provide a vision for employees to understand their roles and responsibilities. It can also help improve company decisions, reduce costs, and improve efficiency across the organisation.

Additionally, having such a policy can help improve relationships with customers and suppliers who want to see a commitment to sustainability.

Download policy template

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Part 6: Upcoming changes to the UK’s anti-money laundering regime

In July 2021, HM Treasury launched a new AML consultation entitled ‘Amendments to the Money Laundering Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds Regulations 2017’. This consultation outlined ways in which the government intended to amend the UK’s money laundering regulations (MLRs) with several time-sensitive updates. The planned updates are required to ensure that the UK continues to meet international AML standards, whilst also clarifying how the UK’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing (AML/CTF) regime works. 

The changes to the MLRs have been made through draft secondary legislation entitled ‘the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 2022’. Most of the measures in this SI will come into force on 1 September 2022, subject to parliamentary approval

In this series of blog posts, we take a closer look at what these changes will mean for anti-money laundering compliance.

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Improved experience for new users

When a new user logs in for the first time they will be directed to an account activation page instead of the standard login page. Clicking the ‘Activate my account’ button will trigger an email to the user’s inbox and they can set a password from there.

Improved warning messages on the form builder

The form builder now has a clear warning message to users about which fields are being used in conditional logic. The warning message will appear when a user tries to delete a field that’s being used in conditional logic.