20 June 2016
The Estate Agency Affairs Board wishes to bring the following to the attention of principals of estate agencies and their auditors.
A notification was issued on 1 June 2015 in relation to IT3b certificates and that notification is still effective for the 2016 financial year and all financial years thereafter. In terms of that notification, it will be acceptable for the auditor to attach a covering letter (in place of the IT3b certificate) explaining the reasons why the IT3b certificate could not be obtained and attached when submitting the audit report online. The delays or difficulties in obtaining the IT3b certificates from banks should not delay the submission of the audit reports within the prescribed four months after the financial year end.
FIC Registration Numbers
The Estate Agency Affairs Board is the supervisory body of estate agencies in terms of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act. Estate agencies are accountable institutions in terms of FICA and are required to register with the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC).
FIC introduced a new registration and reporting platform called goAML in April 2016 and all estate agencies previously registered with the FIC on the previous system as at 7 March 2016 were required to update their details on the new registration and reporting platform from 30 March 2016.
Using the address “firstname.lastname@example.org”, the FIC e-mailed a new entity registration identity, called an “Org ID”, to the Compliance Officer of registered estate agencies on the FIC database, in April 2016. The Org ID replaces the AI/RI number issued to estate agents registered with the FIC. All estate agencies must update their registration details to receive a new confirmation of registration from the FIC in order to file reports with the FIC.
The auditor’s report for estate agencies that should be submitted on the MyEAAB Auditors Portal requires the auditor to confirm whether the estate agency is registered with FIC as an accountable institution and if registered, to state the registration number. Previously this FIC registration number used to be an AI number.
With the introduction of the goAML platform by FIC, the Org ID Number replaces the AI number previously issued to estate agencies. Auditors of estate agencies are therefore required to only include the new Org ID number when submitting the audit report online, and not the old AI Number. The new Org ID number to be entered by the auditor should have been activated on the goAML system and an email from FIC confirming the activation should be used in this regard.
Estate agencies without an activated Org ID Number will therefore not be registered as accountable institutions with FIC and auditors are required to include this non-registration on the audit report to be submitted online.
Further details relating to the goAML system can be obtained on the FIC website.
The estate agencies with a February financial year-end has a 28 February year end recorded on our system. With 2016 being a leap year, it has come to our attention that some estate agencies whose auditors entered the year end as 29 February received letters requesting confirmation of change of year-end. Estate agencies who have received this request of a signed letter confirming change of financial year-end by reason of the auditor selecting 29 February as a financial year end instead of 28 February are advised to ignore the request.
The EAAB is in the process of addressing this system issue and in the meantime, auditors of estate agencies are advised to enter the February financial year-end as 28 February instead of 29 February when submitting the audit reports on the MyEAAB Auditors Portal.
Principals of estate agencies are encouraged to share the contents of this notification with their auditors.
AUDIT COMPLIANCE DEPARTMENT