It is a requirement of the Money Laundering Regs 2007 that all Estate Agents MUST be registered with the OFT for Money Laundering purposes - this requirement has been in place since 2009.
An unregistered Estate Agent is prohibited from undertaking Estate Agency business.
Many Estate Agents chose not to do so, for whatever reason, and the OFT have confirmed to us that this is a criminal offence for which the OFT has the power to prosecute and/or apply civil sanctions in the form of penalties.
In a recent small claims case, the Judge determined that failure to have registered at the point that the Agreement was signed rendered the Agreement illegal at common law and a complete defence to the claim. Further, failure to collect photographic evidence of the signee's identity rendered the Agreement illegal by Statute, again a complete defence to the claim.
You can read the full Regulations here - http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2007/2157/contents/made
A full list of registration dates can be requested from HMRC or by looking on HMRC's web-site or by telephoning HMRC - it is called a 'Freedom of Information Act request' but here are the details of just a few of the 'business sales' type Estate Agents.
Advent - 1st November 2012
Meridian - 5th April 2013
RTA (Business Consultants) Limited - 2nd November 2012
Preferred Commercial Limited - 18th February 2013
Knightsbridge Business Sales 11th March 2016 with HMRC who replaced OFT for Registration - See below. Any contract with Knightsbridge Business Sales signed before that date is illegal by statute. See RTA (Business Consultants) v Bracewell - type it into Googlle. Knightsvridge is not the same as KBS - the two different companies need two separate Registrations - see below:
Supervised Business Register
Detailed Search Results
|Money Laundering Regulations registration number including suffix||:||12863482 (00000)|
|Registered business name||:||KNIGHTSBRIDGE BUSINESS SALES LIMITED|
|Business name||:||KNIGHTSBRIDGE BUSINESS SALES LIMITED|
|Trading name (if exists)||:|
|Trading address||:||OCEANIC, 94 WATERS MEETING ROAD, BOLTON|
|Trading postcode||:||BL1 8SW|
|Types of Supervised Businesses||:||Estate agent business|
Need to check any other agent? eMail us or make an FOI request via a site called WHAT DO THEY KNOW where you can check previous requests too.