Residential Mortgage Broker

Brokers for mortgages for private customers

Real Estate Agents and Originators: You have until August 13 to setup your AML programme. FinCEN (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network), an office of the Ministry of Finance, has reported that, since 13 August 2012, non-bank mortgage providers and developers have been obliged to implement Anti-Money Labelling Programmes (AMLs) that are reasonably intended to avoid being used to ease the process of facilitating currency lending or funding terrorism.

FindCEN has already enacted ordinances that define non-banks as credit or financing institutions to require them to set up anti-money Laundering programmes and notify activities under the Banking Secrecy Act (BSA). According to the existing guidelines, Financeen has interpreted the concept of'credit or financing company' in the context of the Banking SA in such a way that it includes all non-bank mortgage providers and creditors (RMLOs - commonly known as 'mortgage companies' and 'mortgage brokers' in the field of construction finance).

In general, FunCEN had declared that the AML programmes to be deployed by a RMLO must include: provisions for third-party tests to supervise and sustain proper adherence to the AML programme. Every AML programme created by an RMLO must be authorised by company directors. Copies of the AML programme must be available at all moments for consultation by either FinalCEN or its representative on demand.

Although the FinCEN clearance does not specify what "implement" means, we suggest that all measures relating to the execution of an AML programme, such as the nomination of a Chief Compliance Officer, top executive authorisation of the AML programme and staff qualification, be complete by 13 August 2012.

In addition, it is essential that NMLOs make sure that their AML compliancy programmes have been put in place before they set out in a legislative instrument that they fully comply with all relevant legislation and requirements. Likewise, it is important that depositaries make sure that an RTMLO they are dealing with has an AML programme before they accept an assurance from an RTMLO that it is in full accordance with all relevant legislation and regulation.

A RMLO working with a government-sponsored enterprise, the US Housing Administration or other public entity may be subject to legal action under the False Claims Act if it declares to such enterprise that it complies with all relevant statutes and rules but has insufficient or non-existent AMLs.

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