Guidance

Individuals and entities that are designated as reporting entities under the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA) have certain obligations to fulfill. FINTRAC is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Act and its associated Regulations, and provides guidance on how individuals and entities can incorporate these obligations into their operations.

FINTRAC has re-organized guidance on the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA) and associated Regulations. This page now directs you to all FINTRAC guidance as well as additional information such as policy interpretations and operational alerts. The Reporting entity section now directs you to guidance specific to your business sector.

Please direct questions to guidelines-lignesdirectrices@canafe-fintrac.gc.ca.

Overview and interpretation

Background information on FINTRAC and its role in detecting and deterring money laundering in Canada, as well as how FINTRAC conducts examinations to ensure compliance with the legislation. This section also provides technical interpretations of questions related to the PCMLTFA and its associated Regulations.

Compliance program requirements

A documented and comprehensive compliance program is the basis of meeting all of your obligations under the PCMLTFA and its associated Regulations.

Know your client requirements

Reporting entities must verify the identity of their clients for certain activities and transactions according to the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Regulations (PCMLTFR).

Transactions reporting requirements

Reporting entities are required to complete reports about certain transactions and property and submit them to FINTRAC. Financial transaction reports are critical to FINTRAC’s ability to develop and disseminate financial intelligence.

Record keeping requirements

You are responsible for keeping certain account, transaction and client identification records. These records are to be kept in such a way that they can be provided to FINTRAC within 30 days upon request.

Correspondent banking relationship requirements

If your business enters into a correspondent banking relationship with a foreign financial institution, you have specific obligations related to this agreement.

Foreign branches, subsidiaries and affiliates requirements

If you have foreign branches, foreign subsidiaries or affiliates, you have to develop policies to establish requirements with respect to record keeping and retention, and client identification.

Register your money services business (MSB)

Before beginning to operate in Canada, you must register your money services business (MSB) with FINTRAC.

Penalties for non-compliance

Failure to comply with your record keeping or client identification requirements can lead to criminal charges against you. A conviction of failure to retain records could lead to up to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to $500,000, or both. Alternatively, failure to keep records or identify individuals and confirm the existence of entities can lead to an administrative monetary penalty. For more information on penalties, you can also consult the Penalties for non-compliance.

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