New Zealand Law Society - New ethical requirements for architects

New ethical requirements for architects

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A new updated ethical code for architects came into force on 1 January 2018. This includes an obligation to agree on written terms of appointment for provision of professional services.

The Registered Architects Amendment Rules 2017 amend the Registered Architects Rules 2006 and replace the the "Code of minimum standards of ethical conduct for registered architects" with an updated code.

New obligations for registered architects include:

  • If the architect's advice is not followed, there is an obligation to advise the recipient of the advice of any risk of significant harm or damage that may result;
  • An obligation to report any architectural matter with which the architect is professionally involved that could put the safety of any person at risk;
  • An obligation to provide professional services only after written terms of appointment are agreed;
  • An obligation to advise clients of significant issues in a timely manner.

The written terms of appointment must cover the scope of the work, the allocation of responsibilities, any limitation of responsibilities, fees or the method for calculating fees, and how billing will occur.

The new rules also make some changes to the disciplinary hearing processes.

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