A complaint was made to the Institution arising out of the appointment of a member to determine the structural integrity of a barn. Taking all matters into account the PCC found that the member failed to discharge their duties with care, courtesy, impartiality and fidelity; failed to document the structure of his organisation; failed to engage in detailed discussion of how the clients’ requirements would be met, and failed to supply a letter of engagement or acceptance; failed to take all reasonable steps to ensure that the client understood the scope of the service to be provided including any limitations; failed to supply terms of appointment before any work commenced; failed to ensure that the brief and terms of payment were agreed by the client; and failed to obtain written acceptance prior to commencement of work
The PCC, taking into consideration its findings above, decided that the member failed to comply with Articles 1, 5 and 6 of the Code of Conduct.
The PCC issued Guidance to the member pursuant to Regulation 184.108.40.206(1) in the following terms:
Members should take all reasonable steps to understand and define the brief with the client, taking all reasonable steps to ensure that their client understands the scope of the service to be provided including any limitations. The terms of appointment should be agreed (preferably in writing) before any work is commenced.
The PCC issued Training Orders to the member pursuant to Regulation 220.127.116.11(3) in the specific area of:
Dealing with domestic clients, in particular client communications and producing clear and unambiguous terms of appointment.
Understanding company structure and the lawful basis for VAT registration
The PCC directed the member to provide an Undertaking pursuant to Regulation 18.104.22.168(4) in the following terms:
I, <member>, undertake to amend the misleading presentation of my practice, to present clearly and unambiguously in all business communications and collateral that I operate as a Sole Practitioner.
The PCC issued a Warning to the member pursuant to Regulation 22.214.171.124(5) in the following terms:
The member’s professional conduct as a Chartered Member of the Institution has resulted in a decision by the PCC that there has been a failure by him to comply with Articles 1, 5 and 6 of the Code of Conduct and that any complaint against him which comes before the PCC in the future, resulting from conduct similar to that which gave rise to this complaint, may be dealt with more severely.
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