The European Parliament and the Council of Ministers reached an agreement on a review of the third anti-money laundering directive
((2005/60/EC) on 20 April.
The text introduces a number of changes for the legal profession: tax advice provided by lawyers is explicitly within the scope of reporting; the definition of serious crimes now refers to tax crimes; and obliged entities including lawyers must maintain for at least five years the necessary information obtained through customer due diligence measures.
The role of the self-regulatory body (Bar or Law Society) is now protected with regard to first instance reporting. The Directive also provides that Member States should provide for the means and manner by which to achieve the protection of professional secrecy, confidentiality and privacy.
Once the Parliament confirms its agreement in a second reading, member states will have two years to transpose the directive into