The TEAM Professional Standards Committee (TPSC) comprises experienced TEAM Members as well as external lay people who shall assist the Directors and TEAM Members in dealing with enquiries about the professional standards and/or activities of the industry as a whole, or specifically of a TEAM Member, whether from a member of the public, work-seeker, employer, a government department or another TEAM Member. The TPSC shall also endeavour to assist in the resolution of disputes between Members and of complaints by members of the public against a TEAM Member(s). It is understood that whilst any decision by TEAM regarding a complaint or dispute may have an impact on a Members continuing TEAM Membership, any decision, conclusion or proposal will not on its own have any statutory or legal authority. If such an unfortunate impasse was reached, then the complainant and/or Member may have to resort to the relevant authorities based on their contractual relationship with each other.
1. Complaints against Members
All complaints should be directed in the first instance to TEAM HO who on receipt of a complaint from a member of the public, or a Member of TEAM in connection with the professional standards and/or activities of a TEAM Member, Service Provider or non-TEAM Member, will respond to the complainant within 14 days from receipt indicating how the complaint shall be dealt with as follows:
- In the event that either both or one of the parties has already engaged with a third party adviser (legal or otherwise) then TEAM would only be prepared to continue to seek a resolution to the matter if the instructing party(ies) were prepared to suspend their engagement of any such third party advisers and confirm the same in writing. In the event this was not agreed then TEAM would have no option but to withdraw and leave the parties to resolve the matter by whatever means of redress may be available to them.
- Assuming the above is not the case, then, in the first instance, TEAM HO will encourage the complainant and the Member to resolve the matter directly between them in accordance with the Members’ Complaints procedure.
- If a satisfactory resolution cannot be achieved, then the complainant will be requested to provide full details of the complaint in writing including all relevant details and copy correspondence. Unless exceptional circumstances prevail, such complaints should not be more than 12 months old. Such information shall be forwarded to the relevant TEAM Member(s) for their written response. Where the complainant objects to the disclosure of their written complaint to the TEAM Member(s) involved, TEAM HO will decline to deal with the complaint and the complainant shall be informed that the matter is closed. On receipt of the complaint the TEAM Member(s) will be expected to provide a response in writing within 14 days. All the information provided will be forwarded to the TPSC who will consider the complaint.
- If the TPSC by majority consider that there has been a breach of this Constitution and Code of Practice, TEAM shall communicate this to the complainant and the Member concerned and make recommendations, if appropriate, as to any means of redress. The TPSC shall also, where appropriate make recommendations to the Directors of TEAM as to any course of action or sanction that should be taken in respect of the TEAM Member concerned. The actions and/or sanctions the Directors may consider shall include a reprimand, suspension and/or expulsion from Membership.
- If the complaint relates to the activities of a business or individual external to the jurisdiction of TEAM then TEAM HO will endeavour to counsel the complainant or direct them to a relevant authority, source of assistance and/or advice. Complaints that shall be considered to be external to the jurisdiction of TEAM shall include complaints against non-members, complaints amounting to a legal dispute regardless of whether proceedings are current, pending or contemplated or complaints relating to the personal affairs of the Member concerned.
2. Disputes between Members
- In addition to the above, in the first instance the Members should try to resolve the matter between them in a courteous and sensible manner in an attempt to arrive at a mutually satisfactory conclusion.
- If no resolution is forthcoming then if both parties agree to allow TEAM to mediate, each party should provide TEAM MD with full written details of the dispute within 14 days. TEAM MD will forward the information from both parties to the TPSC who will attempt as a neutral third party to assist in settling the dispute and to reach agreement. If no agreement is reached as a result of the involvement of the TPSC or because one party will not engage in attempting resolution within 14 days, or as soon as possible, TEAM shall withdraw and leave the parties to resolve the matter by whatever means of redress may be available to them.
- This process shall not be used where the subject of the dispute amounts to a complaint involving a breach of the TEAM Constitution and Code of Practice or where it relates to the activities of a non-member, is a legal dispute regardless of whether proceedings are current, pending, contemplated or a dispute relating to the personal affairs of the Member concerned.
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