Leading risk and compliance consultancy Legal Eye, has been assisting firms across England and Wales…
Against a tide of regulation, Conveyancing remains very much the highest risk area and this was evidenced by the fact that a failure to carry out Source of Funds checks continued to remain the second most common reason for an AML report to be received by the SRA.
According to the regulator in their most recent report, understanding the source of funds, the role of red flags and why having a robust risk strategy and approach to AML compliance is a must when tackling the prevention of economic crime.
In our 2023 legal year in review, we look at what the team has done in this ever-changing and challenging industry.
At the top of the year, we were pleased to join the Conveyancing Association. We were also selected as attribute providers for the government backed MyIdentity scheme.
A short but big month saw our collaboration with O Neill Patient LLP (ONP), one of the largest conveyancing firms in the country, deliver some serious results. Our project helped ONP reduce their Source of Funds collection and approval process from 45 days to just 11. Not only that but the work we did with the team meant that over half of their reports are now delivered within 48 hours. To cap that, we were shortlisting for the British Conveyancing Awards.
Exploring the challenges with Source of Funds, the evidence, what you ought to be collecting and how to truly make the checking simple but compliant for all involved has always been at the core of what Armalytix does. During the month of May we made it our mission to help firms understand how to overcome the challenges they face, why Source of Funds is more than just bank statements and what a true Source of Funds should look like.
We launched more key functionality – Income and Risk Insights. Both of these equip conveyancers and those in high-risk transactional practice areas to better identify red flags. These increase the ease in which necessary checks can be made and help ensure the costs of compliance are lower than the potential financial and reputational costs the legal sector faces through non-compliance.
In May, we extended our collaborative partnerships to include Redbrick Solutions, a leading CMS provider. These partnerships are incredibly important to us and having the accurate data that is delivered by Armalytix sat within the Redbrick Solutions CMS brings more firms the ability to conduct fast and effective Source of Funds and Source of Wealth checks as part of their day-to-day workflow.
Missing money is every COLP and COFAs worst nightmare, and the active and fraudulent nature of criminals impersonating a law firm is just one of several types of conveyancing fraud that have caused law firms and their PII insurers significant headaches over the last decade. We developed and updated our Account Verification tool to help firms adhere to the obligations surrounding the recipient bank account at the conclusion of a transaction. The updated check enables the client to confirm the account they want the proceeds to be paid into, see the name, type of account, sort code and account number, whether the account has been open for 12 months and a snapshot of activity for that period.
In July, we welcomed Lead Assessor for the CQS, Tracy Thompson. Her insight proved to be invaluable in preparing firms for assessment. Covering key documents, the process and potential outcomes along with terminology breakdown and top tips, this was a must-view webinar.
In August, we welcomed Legal Eye to impart their wisdom. Norman Denton helped us to understand how Armalytix can help commercial property departments harness the power of Open Banking to deliver a tailored fact-finding process and arm solicitors with the ability to make faster, more accurate decisions.
With all our clients, we ensure we adapt and develop Armalytix to suit the specific needs of that firm. Rowlinsons achieved its seamless Source of Funds checks for clients with a powerful integration through InCase. Providing intuitive and easy experiences for clients is key and we have been very pleased with how this project has gone.
We spoke to Today’s Conveyancer about the recently published SRA AML Report and held our annual Innovation Day
The annual SRA report points the industry in the direction of what is happening in AML across all practice areas and firms. Every year, the Conveyancing sector is held to be the most at risk of fraud and reputational damage. To help combat this, understanding Source of Funds is key. Knowing your client’s financial situation, providing an audit trail and meeting the regulations to combat crime can all be achieved with an Armalytix check.
We also held our annual Innovation Day with a number of clients. The insights we get at these gatherings are unrivalled. We get to better understand what happens at the front line, what is needed and share where we are in developing our products.
We attended the Modern Law Conveyancing Awards this year – shortlisted for not just one but two awards. As well as sponsoring the Technology Initiative of the Year we were acknowledged for both Innovation of the Year and Service Provider of the Year. It was reward for a strong year for us. We have continued to grow and innovate, creating strong partnerships with the very best in industry.
Looking to 2024, we will continue that path. To give a sense of Armalytix’s growth, next year it is expected that at least 1 in 10 transactions will use an Armalytix Source of Funds check. Conveyancers are in the front line in fighting the criminals and paving a path to success for AML practice and process.
UK Conveyancers are leading the world on Source of Funds checks. There’s more to be done but we should take a moment to appreciate all the incredible efforts made by Conveyancing professionals and firms in 2023. Amazing work and well done to all of you.
Armalytix is a data intelligence firm that allows consumers to safely share Open Banking and other
data to deliver financial insights to firms, helping those firms conduct faster and more effective AML,
fraud and financial risk checks.
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