A. COMPLAINT PROCESS AND CONSIDERATION OF COMPLAINTS:
Against receipt of a complaint the complaint will first be evaluated for compliance in terms of the procedural guidelines set by the Investigation and Prosecuting Committee (IPC).
Any complaint that does not comply with the required guidelines will be referred back to the complainant for rectification unless there are grounds for urgency and or justification for deviating from the normal process.
Should the complaint substantially comply with the procedural guidelines as set out above, the complaint will then be evaluated to determine whether the complaint is to be dealt with by the disciplinary committees in the normal course of events or whether it is necessary to deviate from the normal process and proceed with the complaint on an urgent and/or expedited basis.
The complaint will be placed on the agenda for the first scheduled meeting of the IPC. The IPC will conduct a cursory evaluation of the complaint to determine whether sufficient information is provided so as to support a finding of misconduct. This is not a consideration of the merits of the complaint but serves to determine whether a proper case is made out in the complaint itself. If the IPC is of the view that the complaint does not disclose a basis for a finding of misconduct the complaint will be referred back to the complainant. The complaint will then be forwarded to the member to afford the member the opportunity of answering to the allegations put forth by the complainant in the complaint. In general, a member will be afforded a period of 21 working days in which to submit his or her Answering Affidavit but further extension may be provided by the committees at the latter’s discretion. Should the member fail and/or refuse to file an Answering Affidavit, the complaint will then be considered by the relevant committee at its next sitting based on the documents then filed on record being the complaint and any ancillary documents in front of the committee such as the member’s Membership Profile and CPD record.
Following receipt of the member’s Answering Affidavit the answering affidavit will then be forwarded to the complainant to allow the complainant to comment thereon and to respond to any new facts or disputes raised by the member in the Answering Affidavit. This is not an opportunity for the complainant to bring new issues to the table but for the complainant to be able to respond to new facts and/or allegations that was not dealt with by the complainant in the initial complaint (Founding Affidavit).
Should the complainant fail and/or refuse to file a Replying Affidavit, the complaint will then be considered by the relevant committee at its next sitting based on the documents then filed on record being the complaint, answering affidavit and ancillary documentation such as the member’s Membership Profile and CPD record.
Following receipt of the complainant’s Replying Affidavit the complaint will then be placed in front of the relevant committee for consideration. The committee may then consider the complaint based on the record or may request any party to provide further particulars and/or additional documentation or to provide oral evidence as determined by the committee in order to consider the matter.
Following consideration of the matter by the committee the parties shall then be advised in writing of the outcome thereof.
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