Requiring lawyers to report suspicions that clients may be involved in money laundering doesn’t violate human rights standards, a European court said.
A French lawyer lost his appeal today against the national rule as the European Court of Human Rights found the requirement doesn’t infringe lawyer-client confidentiality.
The requirement was adopted in 2007 to ensure French lawyers comply with European Union anti-money laundering directives. The rule has safeguards such as requiring the report to be filed to a bar association and restricting the obligation to certain services, including property transactions.
The rule doesn’t “represent a disproportionate interference with lawyers’ professional privilege,” the Strasbourg, France-based court found, according to a statement on the decision.