Your REALTOR® is Asking Questions Because it’s the Law

Many times we are asked by Buyers and Sellers, “why do you need my ID?” or ” Why do you need to know my occupation or where I work?”  The answer is…it’s the law.

Your REALTOR® requires this identification information to comply with the law. It is the federal Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA) that requires financial institutions and real estate agents, among other professionals and services covered by the legislation, to identify customers who conduct financial transactions. These include depositing funds or buying and selling real estate. The Act also requires real estate agents to keep these identification records for five years.

Canada has had substantial anti-money laundering and terrorist financing legislation since 2001. Since then REALTORS® have had a legal responsibility in Canada’s efforts to combat money laundering and terrorist financing, by reporting any cash transactions of $10,000 or more, or reporting suspicious real estate transactions.

Those original legal requirements still exist but under these new regulations, REALTORS® must now document personal information and proof of the identity of their client in each and every transaction, including occupation. If the client is a corporation, REALTORS® must obtain official corporate documents, and the names of directors. If the buyer or seller is in another city, province or country and no in-person meeting is held, REALTORS® must now use an agent or “mandatary” to identify third parties.

More information can be found in the PDF below.

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