Those who report concerns about a Regulated Members can find out information about what happens next.
Regulated Members are RICS professionals and RICS-regulated firms.
Following receipt of a concern about a Regulated Member (see here for How to raise concerns about RICS-Regulated firms or professionals), we will review the information provided to determine whether it meets the threshold for an investigation to be commenced.
Please see RICS guidance on Investigating and Managing Concerns for details about the threshold for commencing an investigation as well as details of steps that we might take instead of an investigation. Appendix A offers specific advice on Concerns about valuations.
If the complaint does not require an investigation to be commenced, we will consider whether other regulatory action might be appropriate. We will usually write to you to let you know our decision and the reasons for it.
If the complaint does meet the threshold, we will commence an investigation. During the process, we will contact you to discuss your concerns and may ask you for more information (including copies of any documents or evidence). We may also contact the Regulated Member to inform them about the complaint, and to request relevant information and their explanation as to the concern.
We strive to work efficiently and effectively during an investigation, and you can expect to hear from us every 30 calendar days (or will be informed that you will be contacted less frequently if appropriate for the particular case).
No, compensation is not available as part of the RICS Investigation and Disciplinary Process.
However, RICS does require RICS-regulated firms (including most sole practitioners and small surveying companies) to have a Complaint Handling Procedure (CHP) in place, which includes the requirement to appoint an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) provider. If after following the CHP, you are unable to resolve your dispute, you can refer the matter to the ADR, who will review the issue and may award compensation if they find in your favour. This is free for consumers.
You may be assisted (depending on whether you are a consumer or commercial customer) by using on the services provided by RICS Dispute Resolution Service (DRS).
Alternatively, you may wish to obtain independent legal advice.
No, there is no appeal process for those raising concerns as part of the RICS Investigation and Disciplinary Process.
However, we may reconsider a decision to close a case without disciplinary action, in certain circumstances such as where:
Guidance on reconsidering decisions to be published early 2022.
The majority of cases are closed without a disciplinary outcome, as they are not sufficiently serious and/or it is not in the public interest to take disciplinary action.
However, in meeting the purpose of Regulation to maintain standards of performance and conduct, we often provide advice to Regulated Members to improve the way in which they work (and a record of the concerns are kept for future consideration).
If disciplinary action is taken, a disciplinary outcome may include a Regulatory Compliance Order (or Consent Order) or a decision being taken by the Regulatory Tribunal sitting as a Disciplinary Panel or Single Member of Regulatory Tribunal (which can include expulsion of a Regulated Member or deregistration of a firm).
A Disciplinary Panel is made up of members from the Regulatory Tribunal, which is an independently led pool of panellists who provides the profession with an effective, fair and independent judicial body.
A Disciplinary Panel sits as a panel of three and comprises of a Panel Chair and two other Regulatory Tribunal members. At least two of the three must be independent Members (non RICS members). A Disciplinary Panel hearing is usually a public hearing, conducted in-person or remotely (via video conferencing platform). Following hearing the evidence and submissions from RICS and the Regulated Member, the Disciplinary Panel will determine whether disciplinary action should be taken, including if a regulatory outcome (sanction) should be imposed.
If the information you provide assists in the presentation of the case, you may be invited to attend the hearing as a witness and provide your evidence directly to the Disciplinary Panel. For more information on Hearings please see Observing an RICS tribunal hearing or Guidance for attending a virtual hearing.
Yes. Some cases are reviewed by a Single Member of the Regulatory Tribunal on the papers. These cases are where we believe there is a realistic prospect of establishing liability to disciplinary action, and the breach is of sufficiently seriousness but that there is not a need for a full hearing.
A case may be referred to a Single Member of the Regulatory Tribunal if:
We do receive information anonymously and where is raises serious concerns these are investigated to establish if the Regulated Member is liability to disciplinary action.
Please see further guidance: do you have concerns about RICS-regulated firms or professionals?