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Supervision by CIMA

The Money Laundering Regulations apply to a number of different business sectors, including financial and credit businesses, accountants and estate agents. Those that fall under the regulations must be supervised by a supervisory authority.

The Money Laundering Regulations 2007 (part 4, supervision and registration) grant CIMA power as a designated authority to supervise its membership for anti-money laundering (AML) purposes.
Members are automatically supervised by CIMA upon gaining, and successfully maintaining their member in practice status and meeting CIMA's monitoring criteria through submission of CIMA's anti-money laundering / counter terrorism financing (AML/CTF) annual return.

It is not necessary for CIMA members to register with more than one supervisory authority. There is no extra cost for AML supervision under CIMA as these costs are contained within the current MiP fees.

Members wishing to be supervised under another supervisory body must inform CIMA through completion of the first screen only of the member in practice application.

Members found to be working in practice whilst unregistered

Any member who is found to be offering accountancy services whilst not registered as a member in practice will be given 28 days to register their details with CIMA (or another professional body if they hold dual membership).

Should that member also be found to have been offering accountancy services whilst unsupervised for AML/CTF purposes CIMA will refer that member to the relevant authority, who may wish to take further action:

  • HMRC
  • Department of Justice and Equality (Ireland)
  • The Financial Services Authority (Isle of Man)

CIMA's AML/CTF Annual Return

All members in practice must complete CIMA's anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing annual return as part of member in practice application and renewal.  

The annual return enables CIMA to understand how members are assessing money laundering and terrorist financing risks and what measures are being taken to mitigate them. 

Members must also undertake adequate risk assessments within their practice.

Members monitored by another professional body must still complete the first section of the return.   

AML/CTF Compliance Visits

To improve the robustness of its AML/CTF supervision and to meet HM Treasury and OPBAS requirements, CIMA is conducting annual AML/CTF compliance visits. 

This falls under CIMA's risk-based approach strategy and any member who is selected will be notified prior to any assessments. 

The following document is intended to provide guidance on what to expect should you, as a Member in Practice, be selected for an Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorist Financing (AML/CTF) compliance visit.  

Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorist Financing Compliance Visits On-site and Desk-based Reviews

HM Treasury Supervisors' report

To improve the transparency and accountability of supervision and to encourage good practice, the Treasury has worked with supervisors to develop an annual report on anti money laundering and counter terrorist finance supervision.