Important information for self-employed bookkeepers

The following information applies only to self-employed bookkeepers working in the UK. If you are unsure if this applies to you please refer to the page –

Money Laundering Regulations – who do they apply to?

To comply with the Money Laundering Regulations 2017 all self-employed bookkeepers must have anti-money laundering (AML) supervision in place. As the IAB is an approved AML supervisor all members to whom the regulations apply, must activate their AML supervision with the IAB by applying for an IAB practising certificate*. This also brings other benefits such as access to guidance and additional resources.

If you are considering joining the IAB as a professional member you must be aware that new members, who are already working as self-employed bookkeepers, will be required to at the same time register as a member ‘in practice’.

Once registered you will either need to apply for a practising certificate* which will confer AML supervision and practice assurance upon you OR you will be required to apply for exemption from holding an IAB practising certificate as you already hold a practising certificate with another approved professional association.

The cost of an IAB practising certificate is currently £160 per year. This cost is in addition to membership fees. There is no cost to apply for exemption.  You must hold active IAB Professional Membership in order for your AML supervision to be valid.

The same rule applies to existing IAB members newly going into external practice.

AML Late registration fees

At the point of applying for membership you must declare how long you have been working as a self-employed bookkeeper and which body is currently (or has very recently) been acting as your AML supervisor. This could be another professional association or HMRC.

If you have been working as a self-employed bookkeeper for over one month, and no proof of AML supervision can be provided a ‘Late Registration’ fee will be added to the cost of the first application for a practising certificate.

The late registration fee is currently £175. This cost is in addition to the cost of the practising certificate and membership fees.


AML Late renewal fees

You must ensure that your AML supervision remains up to date via your Member in Practice (MiP) membership.  If you allow your MiP membership to lapse, you will be practising without AML supervision, in breach of the Money Laundering Regulations and IAB membership requirements.  Applications for renewal of your current MiP membership must be made before your current period of supervision ends.  Renewal of your MiP membership will take place from the point that payment is received, after receipt of your completed renewal application form.  Where your application is received after your current period of AML has ended, the following non-compliance fine will be applied in addition to the cost of your MiP renewal (£160):

Practice without supervision (late renewal) 1-14 days: £50 fine

Practice without supervision (late renewal) 15-28 days: £100 fine

Practice without supervision (late renewal) 29 days+: £175 fine

Where late renewals are received, the end date of your new Practising Certificate will be one year from expiry of your previous certificate, however, AML supervision will not be backdated.

If you plan to cease practice and no longer require AML supervision, you must notify the IAB by completing this form.  Should you wish to resume your AML supervision at a later date, you may be required to provide evidence of client disengagement/ceasing practice from the end point of your initial AML supervision period.


Guidance on the Money Laundering Regulations

For further information on the Money Laundering Regulations please refer to the page –

Regulations for self-employed bookkeepers

* Practising certificates are issued to members and fellows. Associates will receive a Certificate of AML supervision.

Please note: All AML supervisors are bound by agreement to share information between each other. Information disclosed on membership application forms may be shared with other professional body supervisors and HMRC for AML supervision purposes.