Spain: financial ownership file and money laundering prevention

Author:Alberto Gil Soriano
Position:Fiscal Department, Uria Menendez Abogados, SLP. Barcelona, Spain
Pages:238-248
SUMMARY

Purpose This paper aims to analyse the legal configuration of the Spanish financial ownership file and identifies its main legal shortcomings and its necessity and proportionality. Design/methodology/approach The primary and secondary sources of information on which this paper is based are statutes and reports issued by Spanish consultative bodies, respectively. Article 43 of Act ... (see full summary)

 
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Spain: nancial ownership
le and money
laundering prevention
Alberto Gil Soriano
Fiscal Department, Uria Menendez Abogados, SLP. Barcelona, Spain
Abstract
Purpose – This paper aims to analyse the legal conguration of the Spanish nancial ownership le
and identies its main legal shortcomings and its necessity and proportionality.
Design/methodology/approach – The primary and secondary sources of information on which this
paper is based are statutes and reports issued by Spanish consultative bodies, respectively. Article 43 of
Act 10/2010 of 28 April on the prevention of money laundering and terrorist nancing created the
“nancial ownership le”, a publicly owned personal data le containing information on the opening
and cancellation of all types of nancial accounts. The recently enacted Royal Decree 304/2014 of 5 May
approving the Regulations of Act 10/2010 contains further guidance.
Findings – The objective of the nancial ownership le is laudable, but the way it has been congured
creates new obligations that it could be argued are unnecessary as there are already mechanisms in
place to obtain the information in question. The recently enacted regulations raise concerns to the
author about access rights, data protection and monitoring, among other aspects.
Originality/value This paper provides a comprehensive analysis of the Spanish nancial
ownership le, a topic not yet explored in great detail, and could be useful for other legislatures
intending to implement similar systems in their countries.
Keywords Regulations, Spain, Money laundering, Data protection, Asset tracing,
Financial accounts
Paper type Research paper
1. The nancial ownership le: using sledgehammers to crack nuts
1.1 Background
Article 43 of Act 10/2010 of 28 April on the prevention of money laundering and terrorist
nancing created the nancial ownership le (“FOF”), a publicly owned personal data
le containing information on the opening and cancellation of all types of nancial
accounts (current accounts, saving accounts, security accounts and term deposits). In
May 2014, the Spanish government enacted Royal Decree (RD) 304/2014 of 5 May
approving the Regulations of Act 10/2010 (RD 304/2014), which contains detailed
provisions on the creation, operation and access to such les. The FOF is operative since
6 May 2016.
Spanish credit institutions hold ca. 93 million nancial accounts (excluding securities
accounts). According to the Spanish Banking Association (AEB) (Asociación Española
de Banca, 2015), the Spanish Confederation of Savings Banks (CECA) (Confederación
Española de Cajas de Ahorro, 2015) and the National Association of Credit Unions
The author gratefully acknowledges the assistance of Kathleen Dooley.
The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available on Emerald Insight at:
www.emeraldinsight.com/1368-5201.htm
JMLC
19,3
238
Journalof Money Laundering
Control
Vol.19 No. 3, 2016
pp.238-248
©Emerald Group Publishing Limited
1368-5201
DOI 10.1108/JMLC-10-2014-0030

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