Obligations of Registered Firms and PCCB

5.1 A Registered Firm shall:

5.1.1 Adhere to the Invasives Code and be bound by these Rules. 

5.1.2 Organise and conduct its business in a responsible manner, keep proper records, have clearly defined procedures for ensuring compliance with the Invasives Code and these Rules including the appointment of a Code Compliance Officer. 

5.1.3 Deal with PCCB in an open and co-operative manner. 

5.1.4 Notify PCCB within 15 working days of: 

1. any change to the address of the Registered Firm;

2. any change to the details of the appointment or resignation of the Code Compliance Officer; 

3. any merger, de-merger or acquisition decisions relating to its operations.

5.1.5 Ensure that internal procedures for handling customer complaints meet the following minimum standards:

1. A Registered Firm must send a written acknowledgement within 5 working days of receipt of a complaint, giving the name or job title of the person handling the complaint within the firm. At the complainant's request, the Registered Firm will liaise with anyone formally acting on the complainant's behalf. 

2. Within 20 working days of receiving a complaint, a Registered Firm must send the complainant either: 

(1) its written final response; or 

(2) a holding response which explains why it is not yet in a position to resolve the complaint and indicating when the firm will make further contact (which must be within 40 working days of receipt of the complaint); 

3. By the end of 40 working days after its receipt of a complaint, a Registered Firm must send the complainant a written final response. 

4. Where within 40 working days of receiving a complaint, a Registered Firm sends the complainant a written response which: 

(a) offers redress or rejects the complaint and gives reasons for doing so; 

(b) informs the complainant how to pursue his complaint with the Registered Firm if he remains dissatisfied; 

(c) refers to the availability of the The Property Ombudsman scheme (TPOs) if the complainant is a consumer and he remains dissatisfied with the Registered Firm's response; and 

(d) indicates that it will regard the complaint as closed if it does not receive a reply within 40 working days; 
the registered firm is not obliged to continue to comply with 5.1.5.2 or 5.1.5.3 unless the complainant indicates that he remains dissatisfied, in which case the obligation to comply with 5.1.5.3 resumes. 

5. If the complainant takes more than a week to reply to a written response of the kind referred to in 5.1.5.4 the additional time in excess of a week will not count for the purposes of the time limits in 5.1.5.2 and 5.1.5.3

6. If the complaint is made by or on behalf of a consumer rather than a business, then when a Registered Firm sends a complainant a final response, or if it fails to send a final response within 40 working days of receipt of the complaint, it must inform the complainant that he may refer the complaint to The Property Ombudsman scheme (TPOs). 

7. A Registered Firm must create and maintain a complaints log which records all complaints received regarding the firm's Invasives Code related services and products. As a minimum, for each complaint the log must record action taken against the timescales set out in 5.1.5. above and retain records of complaints for a minimum period of 3 years from the date of its receipt of a complaint. 

8. A Registered Firm must send an annual report to PCCB, detailing the type and number of complaints received by the Registered Firm. 

9. Where the complaint involves an insurer, the Registered Firm must acknowledge the complaint within the timeframe and pass it onto the insurer. The insurer should be under an obligation to respond within a similar timescale to those set out in 5.1.5. 

5.1.6 Ensure that, if so requested by the customer in each case, consumer complaints in respect of Invasives Code related activities which are unresolved under the Registered Firm's internal complaints procedure are referred for consideration to the The Property Ombudsman scheme (TPOs) (Annex E). A registered Firm must comply with any requirement for the payment of fees, co-operate fully with the Ombudsman during an investigation and comply with the Ombudsman's final decision. 

5.1.7 At annual registration renewal provide PCCB with details of any changes since the previous renewal to the details of any appointment or resignation of a Controller. 

5.1.8 Ensure that the PII meets the Insurance Requirements published by PCCB, as amended, varied or modified from time to time (Annex B). 

5.1.9 Ensure that information about the Invasives Code, as prescribed by the PCCB and amended, varied or modified from time to time, is provided to the Registered Firm's customers (Annex F). 
Additional provisions for Registered Firms under the Invasives Code 

5.1.10 Ensure that appropriate staff engaged in Invasives Code related business on behalf of the Registered Firm comply with any Competence Requirements published by PCCB or INNSA, as amended, varied or modified from time to time (Annex D). 

5.2 PCCB shall: 

5.2.1 In discharging its function of monitoring compliance with the Invasives Code, in regulating and in all its dealings with Registered Firms, act in good faith and observe and comply with the provisions of these Rules. 

5.2.2 Normally communicate with the Code Compliance Officer but reserves the right to communicate with the Registered Firm's other Controller(s) where it deems it appropriate to do so.