Good Character - Professional Conduct Review

Purpose: This bulletin explains how the Real Estate Council of Alberta’s (RECA) good character policy applies to individuals who are subject to a professional conduct review (investigation).

This bulletin applies to a all industry professionals.

Rule 42(g): What conduct undermines public confidence in the indistry, harms the integrity of the industry, or brings the indistry into disrepute?

The Real Estate Act or Rules do not define what conduct undermines public confidence in the industry, harms the integrity of the industry, or brings the industry into disrepute. RECA defines Rule 42(g) with reference to five key areas:

Respect for the rule of law
Public confidence in the real estate industry requires industry professionals to respect and comply with the law. RECA considers convictions under any law of any country when evaluating a person’s respect for the rule of law.

Honesty
Industry professionals must conduct themselves honestly when in the care and control of money, property, and information. An honest person is truthful, trustworthy, and genuine. A dishonest person deceives or manipulates the truth by lying, misrepresenting the facts, or omitting material facts.

Governability
RECA must ensure industry professionals are governable to serve public interest, protect consumers, and protect the reputation of the real estate industry. Applicants must:

An individual’s history of regulation in another profession or jurisdiction is relevant in assessing good character and reputation, and governability.

Financial responsibility
An applicant's lack of financial responsibility may demonstrate a lack of good character when they:

Financial concerns resulting from an economic downturn or negligent mismanagement of money or property does not necessarily demonstrate a lack of good character.

Professionalism
Professionalism is a standard of conduct based on ethics that govern the real estate industry. Professionalism means:

What triggers a review on whether conduct breached Rule 42(g)?
The executive director reviews conduct after receiving sufficient particulars of a potential breach of Rule 42(g) through:

A potential breach of Rule 42(g) may arise from past conduct or conduct during the review process.

Does RECA review private conduct?
RECA reviews and sanctions private conduct if that conduct undermines public confidence in the industry, harms the integrity of the industry, or brings the industry into disrepute.

RECA may review the conduct of an industry professional if they:

What is the conduct review process and possible outcomes?
During the conduct review process, an industry professional can expect:

The executive director reviews the evidence and may:

Industry professionals have the right to appeal Letters of Reprimand and Administrative Penalties.

Example Cases - Conduct Review Decisions:

  1. An industry professional’s conduct demonstrated a lack of governability by:

This industry professional received a fine and suspension. The Alberta Court of Appeal upheld RECA’s decision.

2. An industry professional’s conduct demonstrated a lack of professionalism and respect for the rule of law by driving clients while impaired. This industry professional received an Administrative Penalty.

3. A broker’s conduct demonstrated a lack of professionalism by making inappropriate comments to a customer on the handling of a deposit. This broker received a Letter of Reprimand.

4. An industry professional’s conduct demonstrated a lack of governability, professionalism, and respect for the rule of law by:

This industry professional received an Administrative Penalty.

5. An industry professional’s conduct compromised the investigative process and demonstrated a lack of governability by contacting complainants and threatening them with legal action unless they retracted their statements to RECA. This industry professional received an Administrative Penalty.

6. An industry professional’s conduct breached Rule 42(g) by driving while impaired and killing another person. The Appeal Panel cancelled the industry professional’s licence.

7. Industry professionals’ conduct demonstrated a lack of professionalism by:

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