The need to use these platforms has been largely driven by Covid-19, accelerating the technology innovations in the industry and accelerating progress within the sector. It without doubt has been the driving force behind the shift to remote working and more efficient working practices. Client habits and behaviours have changed along with their expectations around speed and convenience.
While firms are continually keeping up the pace with expanding regulations from regulatory bodies and tackling threats by defending themselves against increasingly sophisticated fraudsters and money launderers.
As firms increase their online presence and more transactions take place virtually, it becomes even more prudent to ensure the legitimacy of online clients.
With the increased demand, more and more eIDV providers are entering the market and this may seem an overwhelming prospect when trying to choose the right eIDV provider for your firm. This can be a challenge when all firms have different needs and want, so what should you be looking out for?
An eIDV is a method of confirming the identity of an individual, usually using a combination of public information and private databases online.
Most, if not all providers should have the following as a minimum:
The above features ensure robustness in order to keep legal firms compliant and protected against the risk of fraud.
When seeking an eIDV provider that aligns with your firm’s onboarding strategy, you should integrate your case management system with a solution that is truly fit for use by the modern law firm, for seamless full firm management.
In a competitive conveyancing industry, which requires adherence to changing regulations, your eIDV provider should have the capabilities to adjust and grow to meet the needs of the law firm and changing habits and behaviours of your clients.
Therefore, when choosing your eIDV provider it is important to consider completion rates, ID verification checks, customer journey and compliance requirements.
In January 2020 the 5th Money Laundering directive was adopted into UK legislation and with it came the obligations that had been enacted before; that you know your client (KYC) and ensure you comply with the 3 steps of the KYC compliance framework:
Getting to know your customers and identifying high-risk clients can be challenging so it is essential that you have the right support and backup from your provider. A vital consideration is to find out whether the provider has a support service along with their product as otherwise, this can be costly when brought in-house.
Crucially, having a support service in place can have a positive impact on the law firm and your clients. Exclusive, consistent, quality support enhances and adds value to the conveyancing service you are providing to your clients, which reflects well on the firm.
One of the main stumbling blocks that delays the completion process is manual identity checks, which can leave firms open to transaction time delays and compliance risks. Fortunately, requiring customers to come to a physical location with a photo ID and carrying out manual checks is no longer necessary and, in particular ideal, in the digital era and current climate.
An intelligent client onboarding process will allow faster file opening, include secure real-time digital ID verification and provide an end to end onboarding for your client which is paperless and efficient – a better experience for all.
Safe Harbour is a standard that was introduced by HMLR on the 12th March 2021 to encourage the use of digital identity checks in the conveyancing process.
It is important that your provider adheres to HMLR’s Safe Harbour Standard because HMLR will not pursue conveyancers who meet the standard requirements in any recourse claims on the grounds that insufficient identity checks had been carried out.
If the Safe Harbour Standards are not adopted by a legal firm when carrying out conveyancing work, conveyancers and law firms are potentially putting themselves at risk and HMLR could seek compensation on behalf of the victim for fraud or negligence.
Given the prevalence of financial crime, new software to help fight property fraud and money laundering is in high demand.
With Minerva’s intelligent and comprehensive digital client onboarding solution, you can be confident in knowing you have carried out your due diligence and regulatory requirements and reduced the risk of fraud to keep your clients safe and secure.
If you are looking for a solution that has been developed with multi-service law firms in mind and developed alongside large leading law firms, with unrivalled customer experience and fraud prevention, contact Minerva’s friendly team of experts.
Book a no-obligation demo or request more information.