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Property Redress Scheme Terms of Reference Update

The new terms of reference

As the Property Redress Scheme has been operating for two years we have taken the opportunity to review and revise our Terms of Reference.

The PRS Terms of Reference 2nd Edition will be in operation from 1st October 2016.

 

Membership

Most of the Membership elements remain the same.

 

Complaint process

We have made some changes to our complaint process to try to encourage the parties to resolve the complaint as early as possible. The process has been amended to a four stage process. A resolution to the complaint is actively encouraged at each stage:

 

  1.        Member given opportunity to resolve matter directly with Complainant;
  2.        Evidence gathered and a PRS case assessor will try to achieve an early resolution with the parties;
  3.        Proposed decision on the complaint;
  4.        Review of the proposed decision based on an error in fact or law or administrative mistake.

 

For Members on the Entry Model a complaint fee will be payable if the complaint proceeds to stage 3 above. We are pleased to say the Membership and renewal fees for all Members will remain the same as when we launched in the summer of 2014 but complaint fees are going to raise slightly. Those Members on the Entry Model who have access to client money protection (CMP) cover will pay £80 plus vat (from £60 plus vat) and those without access to CMP cover will pay £120 plus vat (from £90 plus vat). We believe this fee increase is proportionate to the amount of work undertaken on a complaint.

 

All Members are reminded that they can transfer to the Enhanced Model which covers all complaints and also gives 24/7 access to a legal helpline.

 

Any complaints raised with the PRS after 1st October 2016 will follow the process in the updated Terms of Reference and that is when the new fee will be charged from.

 

We are currently in the process of testing our new online complaint system and hope that it will be live on or very close to 1st October 2016. We hope the introduction of this system will improve the whole experience of dealing with a complaint through the PRS process.

 

Discipline

We have formalised the disciplinary process under one clause. The PRS Compliance Officer has grounds to investigate a Member’s conduct and if necessary make recommendations to the PRS Head of Redress and Managing Director to remove a Member.

We have been required to add that information relating to the removal of a Member will be shared with the other redress schemes, any relevant enforcement body and also displayed on our website.

 

Appendix

The other main change to the Terms of Reference is the addition of appendix covering each of the different types of work PRS Members undertake.

We have a clause in our Terms of Reference stating that they may need to be updated from time to time and that notices of any significant changes will be posted on our website, in newsletters, and by email where the Member has provided us with an email. If any Member has any concerns about the changes to the Terms of Reference then they are asked to put those concerns in writing to us at info@theprs.co.uk.

 

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Property Redress Scheme is approved by Government under the Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes (Competent Authorities and Information) Regulations 2015