The public can make complaints against any Registered Surveyor to the LSC regarding professional misconduct. There is a special form to be used for this purpose and a specimen of this form is given below. Once a complaint duely made is received at the LSC office it will be inquired into and the results will be made known to both the complainant and the accused. The LSC has adopted a set procedure to conduct these inquires emphasizing the whole process to be very transparent.
If any party is not satisfied with the decision of the LSC on any complaint that party will have to make an appeal to Court of Appeal within 30 days vide section 49 of the Survey Act. Any complaints against the general public on land survey matters will have to be made to the respective Magistrates Court. The LSC entertains only complaints of professional misconduct by any Registered Surveyor.
(1) The complainant should deposit Rs: 500/= in the LSC account to meet the initial costs of the investigations. (2) When calling for a report from the responding surveyor full copy of the complaint with relevant documents will be sent. (3) Going by section 46(2) of the Survey Act the three nominees of the SISL as a subcommittee to meet periodically as required to assist the secretary/council to study all new complaints received and prepare a brief report for each. (4) Proposed steps to be taken at an inquiry (a) Going by the sub-committee report the secretary shall call the necessary parties for a preliminary inquiry giving 28 days notice where possible. To inform the parties to bring their ID cards and the originals of all the documents connected with the inquiry. (b) When parties do not respond to the notice requesting them to attend the inquiry they will be given two/three chances to attend the inquiry. If the complainant fails to appear for two occasions the complaint will be dismissed. If the accused fails to be present at the inquiry for three times on the third day the case will be heard exparte. (c) Both parties together will sit before the LSC, The two parties should not have any dealings among themselves. They must address the chair and the chair will put the question to the respective party. Any party wishing to have a spokes person on his/her behalf is permitted to do so. Prior approval from LSC is required for this purpose. (d) After the inquiry, signed statements from both the complainant and accused parties need to be obtained. Both parties should be allowed to listen to the statements before they are signed. (e) Offences similar to what is mentioned in section 45(1) (a), (b) and (ii)(A) of the Survey Act could be classed as minor offences. The offence committed for the first time will be subjected to a warning and will have to pay an inquiry cost of Rs: 2500/= A similar offence committed for the second time will carry a severe warning and will have to pay an inquiry cost of Rs: 5000/=. If a similar offence is repeated for the third time the registration /License will be suspended for six months, Inquiry cost to be paid will be Rs: 10,000/= This is after a formal inquiry on the lines of paras ‘h’ to ‘k’ below. The parties to be informed that if they need to appeal against a decision, they have to appeal to the Court of Appeal within 30 days. (f) Offences listed under sections 45(1) (c) to (f) of the survey Act may be classified as major offences leading to frauds. (g) According to the seriousness of the offence punishment given will be according to Section 47(1). (h) At the preliminary inquiry if it is decided by the LSC that it is a major offence then proceedings will have to be launched to hold a formal inquiry by issuing the accused an edited list of charges made against him/her by the complainant. Prior notice of 28 days for the inquiry need to be given. (i) The accused can obtain permission from the LSC to be represented. All proceedings of the formal inquiry will be recorded in a voice recorder and later put in to a CD/DVD for future reference. In addition written statements from both parties need to be obtained. The statements will have to be read before the parties and the LSC members before they are signed by the parties. (j) The accused has to be informed of the punishment given to him and further informed that he could appeal against the council decision to the Court of Appeal with in 30 days from the date the decision was intimated to him. (k) Gazetting of the suspension or cancellation of Registration / Licence need to be held up till the minutes of that council meeting is passed at the next council meeting. It does not matter if the period exceeds by a few days more than thirty for the gazetting. This is because if the accused has filed an appeal in the appeal courts the LSC could delay the gazetting till the appeal courts gives its order on the appeal. (l) LSC needs to maintain a data base of all the surveyors against whom inquires have been held, together with the punishments given by the council at those inquires. Whether the surveyor was warned, registration / Licence Suspended or cancelled listed separately so that information could be obtained at any time either surveyors name wise or the nature of the punishment wise. This is in addition to the relevant entries to be made in the Registers. (m) In addition a copy of the letter informing the punishment given to a surveyor should be filed in his personal file. (n) All letters sent to the parties regarding an inquiry, need to be sent under registered post. (p) This procedure will be made effective with effect from 1st of August 2016.