Property Services (Regulation) Act 2011

65.

Investigations.

65.— (1) Subject to section 63(2) and (4), the Authority—

( a) shall, following the receipt of a complaint, or may of its own volition, cause such investigation as it thinks fit to be carried out to identify any improper conduct, and

( b) for the purposes of the investigation, shall appoint an inspector, subject to such terms as it thinks fit—

(i) to carry out the investigation, and

(ii) to submit to it an investigation report following the completion of the investigation.

(2) The Authority may appoint more than one inspector to carry out an investigation but, in any such case, the investigation report concerned shall be prepared jointly by the inspectors so appointed and the other provisions of this Act (including the definition of “investigation report” in section 2(1) and section 68 ) shall, with all necessary modifications, be construed accordingly.

(3) The terms of appointment of an inspector may define the scope of the investigation to be carried out by the inspector, whether as respects the matters or the period to which it is to extend or otherwise, and in particular may limit the investigation to matters connected with particular circumstances.

(4) Where the Authority has appointed an inspector to carry out an investigation, the inspector shall, as soon as is practicable after being so appointed—

( a) if the investigation arises in consequence of the receipt of a complaint by the Authority—

(i) give notice in writing to the licensee to whom the complaint relates of the receipt of the complaint and setting out particulars of the complaint,

(ii) give the licensee—

(I) copies of any documents relevant to the investigation, and

(II) copies of this Part and Part 8 ,

and

(iii) without prejudice to the generality of section 66 , afford to the licensee an opportunity to respond within 30 days from the date on which the licensee received the notice referred to in subparagraph (i), or such further period not exceeding 30 days as the inspector allows, to the complaint,

( b) if the investigation arises on the volition of the Authority—

(i) give notice in writing to the licensee concerned of the matters to which the investigation relates, and

(ii) give the licensee—

(I) copies of any documents relevant to the investigation, and

(II) copies of this Part and Part 8 ,

and

(iii) without prejudice to the generality of section 66 , afford the licensee an opportunity to respond within 30 days from the date on which the licensee received the notice referred to in subparagraph (i), or such further period not exceeding 30 days as the inspector allows, to the matter to which the investigation relates.

(5) Where an investigation arises in consequence of the receipt of a complaint by the Authority, the inspector appointed to carry out the investigation—

( a) shall, as soon as is practicable, give the complainant a copy of the notice referred to in subsection (4)(a)(i) given to the licensee to whom the complaint relates, and

( b) shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the complainant is kept informed of progress on the investigation.

(6) Where the Authority receives a complaint in respect of a licensee in his or her capacity as a principal officer or an employee of a licensee who is a property services employer, then nothing in this Act shall be construed to preclude the Authority, where it thinks it proper to do so, from treating the complaint as also being made in respect of the property services employer and, in any such case, the investigation concerned may relate to more than one licensee and the provisions of this Act (including this section) shall, with all necessary modifications, be construed accordingly.

(7) Where the Authority receives a complaint in respect of a licensee who is a property services employer and is satisfied that the matter, the subject of the complaint, may relate to the provision of a property service by another licensee in his or her capacity as a principal officer or an employee of that property services employer, then nothing in this Act shall be construed to preclude the Authority, where it thinks it proper to do so, from treating the complaint as also being made in respect of that principal officer or employee, as the case may be, and, in any such case, the investigation concerned may relate to more than one licensee and the provisions of this Act (including this section) shall, with all necessary modifications, be construed accordingly.

(8) Subsections (6) and (7) shall not be construed to limit the generality of the Authority’s power under subsection (1) to cause an investigation to be carried out of its own volition and, accordingly, any such investigation may relate to more than one licensee and the provisions of this Act (including this section) shall, with all necessary modifications, be construed accordingly.