Provide an example of when you have shown good client care?
When I was instructed on the disposal of a shopping centre in Latvia, I tracked investor interest in the asset using an investor list and arranged a weekly conference call with the client so that I could keep them abroad of progress
Why does your firm have Professional Indemnity insurance?
It is one of the Rules of Conduct for Firms, 2007 (as amended 2017)
To protect surveyors, clients and third parties against negligence claims where there is a duty of care breached and a claim for damages arises
How much professional indemnity insurance does your firm require?
Firm’s turnover in the preceding year determines the minimum level of indemnity required for every claim:
£100,000 or less => £250,000
£101,000 - £200,000 => £500,000
£201,000 and above => £1,000,000
What is the maximum level of uninsured excess?
Liability of up to £500,000 => greater of 2.5% of the sum insured or £10,000
Liability of over £500,000 => 2.5% of the sum insured
When would your insurer need to know if a complaint was made against your firm?
Depends on your agreement with the insurer but usually when the complaints handling procedure is triggered as this could lead to a claim for negligence
What procedures are required to be in place if a complaint has been made?
- RICS has issued a Guidance Note on Complaints Handling, 2016
- Complaint should be acknowledged within 7 days and investigated within 28 days
- Firms must include a RICS approved ADR method e.g. Centre for Dispute Resolution (CEDR) or the RICS Dispute Resolution Service
What is the guidance set out in RICS Complaints Handling, 2016?
- Firm’s written complaint handing procedure (CHP) must be approved by RICS
- Notify your PII insurer as soon as possible if there is a complaint as this could lead to a claim for negligence
- Details of the CHP should be issued to a client at the same time as Terms of Business
- Complaints log must be maintained to show the details, progress and outcome of any complaints
- Firms must include an RICS approved Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mechanism in the Complaints Handling Procedure
What is your firm’s complaints handling procedure?
- Acknowledge receipt within 5 working days and provide a written response within a further 10 working days
- The complainant should confirm within 10 working days whether they wish to take the matter further
- If they do, then within 5 working days of such written notification, the person dealing with the complaint will write to the complainant informing them of what action has been, or will be taken
• If the complainant is still dissatisfied, it can be referred to Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) or the RICS Dispute Resolution Service (DRS)
If still not resolved then it can be referred to the Independent Dispute Resolution Scheme (IDRS) for arbitration
When you first receive a complaint, how should it be dealt with?
Aim to deal with the complaint in house initially
Ask for the complaint to be made in writing
Issue details of the CHP to the complainant
Share the details of the Complaints Handling Officer with the complainant, as the person who should be contacted in the first instance
If a complainant is unhappy with how the complaint has been dealt with in house, what should be done?
- Use an independent redress scheme chosen by the firm
- Name of the redress mechanism must be provided to the complainant e.g. Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR), Property Redress Scheme and RICS Dispute Resolution Service
When will the RICS become involved with a complaint?
If a member fails to respond to the complainant or prevents the party gaining access to an independent redress mechanism
What should a sole practitioner do differently with regards to the their complaints handling procedure?
Must nominate a surveyor in another firm to act as their complaints handling officer
What are the principles of client care?
Ensuing communication is regular, open and transparent