The AML legislation and requirements for valid proof of identity
Published: 28 September 2022
Finanstilsynet receives a number of enquiries about the bank’s requirement for valid proof of identity from customers. The requirements of the legislation are specified below.
The AML legislation comprises a number of requirements regarding the information to be obtained and confirmed by banks etc. This includes the requirement that customers must provide valid proof of identity when entering into the customer relationship.
The AML legislation’s definition of valid proof of identity
According to Finanstilsynet's circular ‘Guide to the Anti-Money Laundering Act’, Section 188.8.131.52 (available in Norwegian only), the following documents meet the requirements:
- Norwegian and foreign passports (not emergency passports)
- Norwegian national ID cards
- Norwegian driving licence
- Norwegian bank card with photograph
- National ID card issued by an EEA country (a list of these can be found in attachment 4 to the Immigration Regulations)
- Norwegian immigrant’s passport (blue passport)
- Norwegian refugee travel document (green passport)
- Electronic proof of identity in accordance with the AML Regulations, Section 4-3 (4)
Why does the bank ask for proof of identity even when I have been a customer for many years?
The AML legislation requires ongoing monitoring of customer relationships. This means that information about customers must be up to date at all times, and that new documentation must be obtained when there is doubt as to whether previously obtained information is correct or sufficient. This requirement has been in force since 2009 and entails, among other things, that obliged entities must obtain valid proof of identity for customers where this was not obtained when the customer relationship was established.
Finanstilsynet has overseen obliged entities’ compliance with this requirement, for example by sending identical letters to banks and others in 2010 and subsequently through its supervisory activity.
Finanstilsynet is nevertheless aware that a number of banks still do not comply with the above requirements. We are currently receiving a number of enquiries which indicate that several banks are in the process of obtaining the statutory documentation.
Why does my bank require a passport as valid proof of identity?
The requirements for BankID and verification of identity are set by Finance Norway’s Service Office/BITS. The new AML Regulations are a continuation and specification of key parts of the current regulations. Finanstilsynet has not tightened the requirements for using BankID for identity verification.
Based on their own risk assessments and business operations, the banks may prepare their own rules and procedures for secure customer due diligence that entail stricter requirements than those mentioned above. However, this is no requirement from Finanstilsynet.
Is personal appearance required?
Section 12 (2) of the Anti-Money Laundering Act requires that the customer’s identity as a rule be verified by personal appearance. However, it is possible to meet the requirements by submitting a copy of the identity document in combination with other measures. The procedure is described in Finanstilsynet's circular, item 184.108.40.206.
Are there exceptions?
No, the legal requirements cannot be deviated from. For a few special groups, somewhat more lenient requirements for documentation are accepted, but these are narrow exceptions that require special reasons. See more information about this in the following items of the circular:
- 3.1.4 People who do not have valid proof of identity – minors
- 3.1.5 People who do not have valid proof of identity – wards
- 3.1.6 Elderly and seriously ill persons without valid proof of identity
- 220.127.116.11 People who do not have valid proof of identity – foreign nationals