RICS Rules of conduct and disciplinary action Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in RICS Rules of conduct and disciplinary action Deck (40)
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What are the RICS Rules of Conduct?

Sets out MANDATORY standards of professional conduct and practice expected of all RICS members, students, trainees, and regulated firms

Help protect the public and uphold reputation of the profession

Demonstrates to clients, consumers and the public the high professional standards that RICS professionals and firms employ


What are the FIVE principles of better regulation under the RICS Rules of Conduct?


1. Proportionality

2. Accountability

3. Consistency

4. Targeting

5. Transparency


When did the ROC come into force?

Came into force on 4 June 2007


How is the ROC set out for (1) Firms and (2) Members?

ROC = set out individually for:
- RICS members
- RICS firms


Are the ROC mandatory?

Absolutely yes - for all RICS members and RICS-regulated firms


What is Conduct Unbenefitting?

A particular activity / behaviour that is either:
- disgraceful;
- dishonourable; or
- liable to bring the profession into disrepute


What are some examples of Conduct Unbenefitting?

Dishonesty - whether or not resulting in a criminal conviction

Misapplication of clients' funds - whether for the RICS member's benefit or otherwise

Refusing to enter into an undertaking required by a disciplinary body of RICS

Breaching an undertaking given to RICS or any other third party

Giving false and/or misleading information to RICS or any third party


What is the purpose of RICS' disciplinary action?

To protect the public interest and safeguard the reputation of the profession


What do the ROC state about disciplinary action?

Not every shortcoming by RICS member / firm will result in disciplinary action

But failure to follow RICS guidance = considered with behaviour of member / firm

The member / firm will be asked to justify the steps they took and why


Who sets the rules on RICS disciplinary powers?

The RICS Standards and Regulation Board

They formulate and deliver the regulatory policy objectives of RICS under delegated authority from Governing Council


What are the Regulatory Tribunal Rules and who sets them?

Set by the RICS Standards and Regulation Board

These rules set out the processes, decisions RICS can take and regulatory actions available to us in relation to discipline


What is the RICS Sanctions Policy?

Sets out the Regulatory Board’s approach to disciplinary sanctions when applied to a member / regulated firm under RICS’ Disciplinary Rules

Policy intended to be compatible with Human Rights Act 2000


What is misconduct?

Failure to follow RICS’ rules of conduct / professional standards

Where RICS believe the need to take action to protect the public / uphold standards

Behaviour that is likely to damage the public’s confidence in the profession


In what cases might disciplinary action be triggered?

Complaint made to RICS

Allegation of client / third party

Result of information received / established by RICS


When might a case be less serious for discipline?

Where Regulated Member admits allegations, RICS will use a Regulatory Compliance Order (RCO) to ensure future compliance with the RICS standards

Where Regulated Member does not admit allegations, the case can be referred to a Single Member of the Regulatory Tribunal to decide whether to impose a disciplinary outcome

(The Regulatory Tribunal is independent from RICS and the regulatory department)


When might a case be more serious for discipline?

May need to refer case to a Disciplinary Panel, drawn from independent Regulatory Tribunal (Panels are selected from the Regulatory Tribunal)

Disciplinary Panels can issue sanctions ranging from cautions, imposing fines, imposing conditions or expelling Regulated Members and removing registration of RICS-regulated firms


What is a fixed penalty and which Rules are applicable?

A caution and/or fine payable by RICS member / firm for breaching following FOUR Rules:

- Rule 6 of Rules of Conduct for Members - CPD;

- Rule 8 of Rules of Conduct for Members - Information to RICS;

- Rule 10 of the Rules for the Registration of Firms - fees;

- Rule 14 of Rules of Conduct for Firms - Information to RICS.


How might you consider the seriousness of a breach for (i) Regulatory Compliance Order (RCO) and (ii) panel hearings?

Whether breach involved wrongdoing, blame, recklessness or dishonesty;

Risk of loss, or size of damage to the public or consumers;

The member / firm's level of experience in practice;

Where relevant, the length of time over which the breach occurred;

Number or frequency of the breach(es); and

Duration of the breach(es).


What are some mitigating factors for a breach?

Steps taken to rectify breaches, or to avoid a repeat;

Responsibility taken by the member / firm for any failings;

Whether the member / firm notified RICS of the breach;

Any admission and/or regret expressed;

Any steps taken by the member / firm to compensate the client;

A willingness to assist RICS; and

Ill health.


Following Oct 2019, what are Consent Orders now referred to?



What is a Regulatory Compliance Order (RCO)?

A formal written agreement between RICS and the member / firm confirming:

- They are liable for disciplinary action

- admits that they have fallen short of the standards expected

- agrees to an appropriate sanction

- in some cases, take steps to meet the standards expected and/or to prevent it happening again


What does an RCO generally include?

One or more of the following:
- Caution
- Reprimand
- A requirement that the Regulated Member gives one or more undertakings as to future conduct
- A requirement that the Regulated Member takes or stops taking certain actions within a specified period of time
- Conditions on the Regulated member's continued membership of RICS
- Conditions on a Regulated Members registration for regulation
- A requirement that the Regulated Member pays a fine of up to £2000 per breach
- RCO will be published on RICS website for up to 12 months


When might RICS enter into an RCO with a member / firm?

If RICS believes that the rule breach concerned is not serious enough to call for a public disciplinary hearing

If member / firm admits the breach and is willing to co-operate with RICS to rectify the matter


Where a public disciplinary hearing is called for, what are the different penalties that can be issued?



undertakings as to future conduct


conditions on / expulsion of member's continued membership of RICS

conditions on / removal of the firm's registration for regulation


What is the level of penalty dependent on?

The penalty imposed will be proportionate to the breach and all the circumstances


When might a CAUTION be given?

Where breach = minor and is unlikely to be repeated


When might a REPRIMAND be given?

Where there has been / is a risk of public harm


When might UNDERTAKINGS be imposed?

Where standard of the RICS member / firm's professional work has fallen short / not have necessary competence


What are some UNDERTAKINGS which can be imposed?

The member / firm to refrain from practising in a particular specialism;

The member / firm to practise that specialism under supervision; or

The member / firm to refrain from practising a specialism until RICS is satisfied that competence has been achieved in that field


What should the conditions imposted on firms / individuals be?

Should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound

Will state whether a breach of these conditions by the member / firm will lead to automatic expulsion / removal, or whether further disciplinary action is appropriate