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Architects found guilty of unprofessional conduct

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The Architects Registration Board (ARB) has found two architects guilty of unprofessional conduct in separate cases involving domestic work

Alan Andrew Crawford was issued with a penalty order of £1,500 after the ARB’s professional conduct committee found him guilty of not having adequate professional indemnity insurance for a project and of failing to deal with a client’s complaint appropriately.

The allegations against Crawford, of the Crawford Design Partnership in Muswell Hill, north London, stemmed from problems that emerged with a domestic project in 2009.

The committee heard that Crawford had repeatedly failed to respond to requests to deal with the issue – a water leak – from the project clients, its contractors, and subsequently the client’s solicitors over a period of four years.

It was also told that Crawford’s insurer had taken issue with his handling of the case and declined cover on the grounds that it had not been informed of ongoing developments.

In his defence, Crawford blamed problems occurring in the office, but accepted that he had not handled the complaint properly. He argued that he had been properly insured but had unintentionally omitted to forward on letters which led to the refusal of cover.

He said the company had ultimately settled the claim from its own resources.

In a separate case, Robert Trimble of Twickenham, south west London, was issued with a reprimand by the committee after it found him guilty of failing to set out terms of engagement in writing, producing inaccurate plans and drawings, and failing to deal with his client’s complaints.

An allegation of over-charging in relation to the case, to which Trimble was instructed in December 2012, was found unproven.

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