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The UK’s Anti-Money Laundering Guidelines have been updated

Paint tubes on table
Emma Bennett Studio, photograph by Brian Benson.

Are you aware of your obligations under the Money Laundering Regulations?

UK art market participants who trade in works of art valued at or above €10,000 are required to meet specific obligations under the Money Laundering Regulations, similar to those that apply to banks, accountants and lawyers. They must register with HMRC for supervision, appoint a Money Laundering Reporting Officer, implement Policies, controls and procedures and more… Fines may be imposed on dealers who are found to be trading without complying with these obligations.

Who is an intermediary?

The Money Laundering Regulations 2017 apply to Art Market Participants (AMPs) who are defined as traders or intermediaries in the sale or purchase of works of art valued at €10,000 or more.

The new Guidelines clarify that the intermediary is "someone who, by way of business, actively transacts in the sale or purchase of works of art on behalf of a seller or buyer under whose authority they act".

AMPs are required to carry out "Know Your Customer" checks prior to concluding a transaction. Following consultations between the British Art Market Federation, HM Treasury and HMRC, the new Guidelines provide that "The customer of an AMP who is selling or acting as an intermediary in the sale or purchase of a work of art, will be whoever is paying the AMP for the artwork, or for services in relation to the transaction."

You can find further information here.

Rakhi Talwar is the founder of RTalwar Compliance, an independent compliance consultancy for art businesses and Martin Wilson is the chief General Counsel at Phillips and the author of Art Law and the Business of Art.