New legislation requires all redress providers to be certified.
Ombudsman Services has today announced that it is certified by Powys County Council, the lead enforcement authority for the purposes of the Estate Agents Act 1979(a), to operate as an approved alternative dispute resolution (ADR) body providing estate agents redress scheme under the Consumers and Estate Agents Redress Act (CEAR) 2008.
From 9 July 2015 legislative changes will mean that all dispute resolution providers will need to be certified by the government approved Competent Authority to operate within the sectors they serve.
The legislative changes, part of the EU Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution, will mean that consumers will be able to contact an ADR body for most non-regulated consumer sectors in the event that they cannot resolve a dispute with a business themselves.
Chief Ombudsman Lewis Shand Smith says: “We are the UK’s leading multi-sector provider of dispute resolution. We are experts in the sectors in which we operate and so to obtain approval from Powys County Council to continue to provide redress in the property sales and lettings sectors is excellent news and further strengthens Ombudsman Services as the redress provider of choice.
“With extensive experience of working with regulated industries and professional bodies as well as with many businesses throughout the UK it also endorses what we do and how we do it”.
James Munro from the National Trading Standards Estate Agency Team commented: “The approval process and criteria outlined by the directive and delivered by Powys County Council are arduous and designed to ensure that disputes are resolved quickly and effectively. Powys County Council is delighted to be able to approve Ombudsman Services, which has met the quality criteria required by the directive as assessed through an audit process.”