The Act to Regulate the Legal Profession in Malta

Act No. XIX of 2021 seeks to regulate the legal profession and address Moneyval concerns

| Published on 31 May 2021

The Act to regulate the Legal Profession

An act regulating the legal profession in Malta has entered into force on the 20th April 2021.  The aim of the act was to address inefficiencies identified by Moneyval and to create further safeguards for the legal profession in terms of money-laundering risks.

The Act regulating the Legal Profession in Malta - Highlights

The act has instituted the creation of a register containing information on all advocates and legal procurators holding a warrant in Malta. Indeed, a law firm must also be registered in the Register in accordance with these new provisions.  Names of law firms are further regulated. 

The act has further included specific measures set to curtail risks of money-laundering within the legal profession, such as that an advocate can be disqualified perpetually in the event of continual and systematic failures to satisfy prevention of anti-money laundering obligations.

The act seeks to regulate the profession which is deemed high-risk in its nature and adds the requisite of an advocate being a ‘fit and proper person’.  All in all, this reform is the first major step in regulating a field which was never before so regulated in Malta. 

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