Depending on the nature of the services the firm provides, our lawyers are subject to the Act of 18 September 2017 concerning the prevention of money laundering and financing of terrorism, which also imposes deontological obligations. These regulations aim to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism and, to this end, impose a number of mandatory obligations upon lawyers.
Duty of identification, verification and vigilance
Our lawyers are required to identify their clients and to request and retain a number of documents proving their identity for a period of ten years. For this reason, the firm may carry out checks using external electronic databases. The client accepts that any associated costs are at its expense.
Throughout the client relationship, lawyers are also subject to a duty of vigilance which may result in additional information being required. This duty to disclose information and maintain vigilance applies not only to our clients (natural and legal persons), but also to their agents, such as company directors, and their ultimate beneficiaries ("UBO").
We rely on the client’s cooperation
The aforementioned procedures require cooperation from the client and also oblige clients operating as a legal entity to notify the firm of the identity of the UBO. The client undertakes to notify the firm of any change that may affect their status and to provide any information requested by the firm upon first request.
If the client refuses to provide the information upon request, the firm will not be able to enter into a business relationship. If provisional action has already been taken, any further intervention will have to be terminated.
Notification of suspected money laundering
If, in the course of their activities as laid down in the regulations, lawyers become aware of facts which they know or suspect to be related to money laundering or the financing of terrorism, they must immediately notify the president of their bar association, unless their activities are aimed at determining the legal position of their client or at defending or representing their client in (connection with) legal proceedings. The president of the bar association will decide whether or not to pass on the information received to the Financial Intelligence Processing Unit. Neither the firm nor its lawyers shall be liable as a result of any notifications made in good faith.
What do we use your data for?
We guarantee complete discretion concerning any data you provide us with before and during our business relationship. The money laundering prevention act does not interfere with our professional secrecy and we fully respect the relevant privacy regulations, also in accordance with our privacy statement (to be consulted here). We share data with third parties insofar as required for careful handling of your file (bailiff, notaries, accountants, lawyers, etc.).
We will only disclose the identification data you have provided us with if money laundering prevention regulations require us to do so.
We trust that you understand the procedures we have to comply with and that we can rely on your cooperation in this respect. Please be assured that these procedures will in no way affect our professionalism and commitment to you.
Should you require further clarification, please do not hesitate to contact us.