Under the provisions of the Building Control Act 2007 the consumer is protected by requiring anybody using the title architect to have defined qualifications and by the availability of procedures for dealing with complaints against registered architects. Architects must also complete defined Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirements.
Business and Practice titles must also comply with RIAI rules.
The Code of Conduct
The RIAI has published a DRAFT Code of Conduct, available on the following link:
The provisions of the Building Control Act 2007 do not constitute self regulation but co-regulation. Co-regulation has been defined by the European Commission as a process whereby a Government delegates a statutory function to a non-Governmental organisation, such as a Professional Body, with appropriate safeguards in the legislation and with appropriate safeguards following implementation.
The independence of the Professional Conduct process is ensured by having a majority of non-architects on the Professional Conduct Committee, nominated by the Minister of the Environment, and an independent chairman with a legal background. Although the RIAI resources and administers the Professional Conduct and Fitness to Practice process, the Professional Conduct Committee comes to its decisions independently, without any input from the RIAI as the Registration Body.
There is also an independent Appeals system, provided for in the Building Control Act 2007.