As a Regulated Member of RICS, on receipt of concerns about your conduct or adherence to RICS rules and standards, we can consider investigating you where it is in the public interest to do so.
The concerns can come from members of the public, fellow professionals, and other authorities (such as the Police). However, we do not act on all information we receive. This is because we will first review the information and consider whether it suggests that there is a case to answer (that is, it gives rise to facts which mean you may be liable to disciplinary action).
Please refer to our Regulatory Decision-Making guidance for more information about how we decide whether there could be a case to answer.
We may not take any action where the concerns raised are not serious enough or it is not in the public interest to pursue them further. Please refer to our guidance on Investigating and Managing Concerns for more information about this. In these cases, we may not contact you at all regarding the concern.
If the information suggests that the threshold for investigation is met, we may contact you to ask for more information and to give you an opportunity to give your explanation on the concerns raised.
Your response will be reviewed alongside the information gathered to decide whether there is credible evidence that rules or standards have not been upheld. If there is, we will assess the seriousness of the concerns and whether it is in the public interest to take disciplinary action. If it is determined that it is, we will write to you with allegations (a list of the individual issues/concerns) and invite you to respond within 28 days.
If we subsequently decide to take disciplinary action, we can do so by agreeing an outcome with you in the form of a Regulatory Compliance Order, by referring the matter to a Single Member of the Regulatory Tribunal or by referring the matter to a Disciplinary Panel for a public hearing.
If we do not take disciplinary action, we still may offer you advice in writing. We will also keep a record of the information as we may consider it again, in the event we receive reports of similar concerns in the future.
Finding yourself under investigation can be very difficult and if you require some further support, please consider contacting LionHeart.
LionHeart is a charity for RICS members and their families that is independent from RICS and is entirely confidential. It can offer work-related support and counselling for stress and wellbeing. It can also offer a referral for one-off legal advice and signpost you to further help if necessary.
LionHeart helps RICS professionals no matter where in the world they are based, although for practical and legal reasons the global services it can offer may vary. You can contact the support team in confidence via the Helpline: 0800 009 2960 (or +44 (0)121 289 3300 if calling internationally). Or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also find further information about LionHeart on their website.
Speaking Up is important part of the profession's "moral compass" and contributes to maintaining the public interest and public confidence in the profession.
Regulated Members have a professional duty to promptly disclose the details of any other Regulated Member that they reasonably believe may have breached RICS rules or standards (see B5.2.1(c) of the Bye-Laws). Regulated Members are provided further guidance on exercising this judgment and speaking up here.