RECA Self-Represented Program
Increasingly, industry members are choosing to represent themselves at RECA hearings and appeals. They choose to do this even though RECA strongly encourages industry members to obtain legal counsel. Legal counsel can greatly benefit an industry member’s case.
Due to the legalistic nature of hearing and appeals processes, industry professionals who do not have legal representation find the process difficult. Because industry members don’t always have legal counsel, RECA has developed a Self-Represented Program (the Program) to provide process guidance and information to industry members. The program’s objective is to improve and enhance the overall experience for self-represented industry members involved in RECA hearings and appeals.
Self-Represented Process Checklists
RECA wants to help ensure self-represented industry members are able to understand and successfully navigate hearing and appeal processes.
The program should improve an industry member’s knowledge, competency and response to hearings and appeals. Through the program, RECA is committed to making its hearing and appeal processes more understandable, user-friendly and accessible for industry members.
RECA’s Self-Represented Program Includes:
- A free 2 hour process information consultation with an independent lawyer
- A How to Represent Yourself at a Real Estate Council of Alberta Hearing or Appeal Guide (the Guide)
- Checklists for self-represented parties detailing steps in thirteen (13) hearings and appeal processes, and
- Plain language forms.
Lawyer Information Consultation
The free consultation with a third party lawyer allows the self-represented industry member an opportunity to discuss general process information with an independent lawyer face to face.
The consultation aims to provide general information to help self-represented individuals understand:
- how a RECA hearing or appeal works
- what will be required before and during the proceedings
- the principles of natural justice and fairness
- the steps an individual might take to prepare for a hearing or appeal
- the potential serious consequences a hearing or appeal may have on an industry member
The third party lawyers are independent lawyers who have undergone training about RECA hearings and appeals and are supplied legal information about RECA processes. They are not employees of RECA and they have no involvement or knowledge of any industry member’s specific case. They cannot give legal advice or represent the industry member at the hearing or appeal. The third party lawyer’s role is to give general information about RECA hearing and appeal processes so that the industry member has a better understanding of how to follow the proper hearing and appeal procedures.
The “How to Represent Yourself at a Real Estate Council of Alberta Hearing or Appeal” guide is a detailed document that was created to provide self-represented individuals with general information to help them understand the process of a hearing or appeal. The guide explains:
- every type of RECA hearing or appeal process
- what to expect during the processes
- options for settlements or agreements
- how to prepare for the hearing or appeal, and
- what the possible outcomes are.
By using the guide, self-represented industry members will be much better informed about what to expect at their hearing or appeal and they will be able to reasonably prepare.
The checklists for each type hearing or appeal process give a comprehensive outline of what actually happens on the day of hearing. They explain the hearing processes in a step by step manner. The checklists walk self-represented parties through the hearing with such level of detail that they will know exactly what is happening at each stage, who is required to do what, and when. The checklists ensures self-represented industry members can fully prepare every part of their case, helping to relieve stress, anxiety and frustration and any feelings that they are at a disadvantage because they do not understand the process.
Plain Language Forms
RECA will be introducing prescribed forms for different parts of hearing and appeal processes. For example, a form will be used to make preliminary
applications or for document exchange protocols. The forms will help guide self-represented individuals so that they know what information to present in which manner. The prescribed forms are written in plain language and give clear instructions. They are straightforward and direct. The forms will greatly improve the ability of self-represented industry members to present their case.
For more information on the Self-Represented Program, please contact RECA General Counsel Unit:
Fax: 403 228 3065
Phone: 403 228 2954
Toll Free: 1 800 425 2754
Address: Real Estate Council of Alberta
350 4954 Richard Road SW
Calgary, Alberta, T3E 6L1