STATUTE OF THE COURT OF HONOUR OF THE ESTONIAN CHAMBER OF REAL ESTATE AGENTS
Approved 4 July 2015
at the General Meeting of the Estonian Chamber of Real Estate Agents
I. General Provisions
1.1 The Court of Honour (hereinafter the Court) of the Estonian Chamber of Real Estate Agents (hereinafter the Chamber) is formed according to the procedure established in the Articles of Association. The Court shall operate pursuant to the Articles of Association of the Chamber, the decisions of the general meetings of the Chamber, the Members’ Code of Good Practice of the Chamber, and the laws of the Republic of Estonia. In any instances not covered by this statute, the Court’s procedures shall be determined by the Code of Civil Procedure.
1.2 Every concerned person, including members of the Chamber or professional agents, has the right to approach the Board of the Chamber with an application to protect their rights in the event of disputes or violations of rights by a member of the Chamber or a professional agent, and if necessary, the Board will refer the application to the Court for resolution.
1.3 The Court shall hear and settle disputes on the basis of applications if the application is made no more than six months after the occurrence of the legal fact incurring the application. The Court shall make a decision within three months of the submission of the application.
II. Composition of the Court and Organisation of Work
2.1 The Court comprises of between five and seven members. The members of the Court are selected at the general meeting. The Court selects a chairperson and a deputy chairperson from amongst its members. The deputy chairperson acts as the chairperson of the Court in the chairperson’s absence.
2.2. Court proceedings are closed. The chairperson of the Court has the right to invite other persons to take part in the proceedings as non-voting advisors in order to assist the Court’s work. The Court may resolve the matter through written submissions if the interested person has not requested that the matter be adjudicated at an oral hearing.
2.3 A quorum of the Court shall be present if at least half of the Court’s members, including the Court chairperson, are present. In the event that a member of the Court cannot take part in the proceedings, the chairperson or deputy chairperson must be notified in advance.
2.4 A member of the Court may not participate in proceedings of a dispute if the dispute relates to a company with which the member is connected, or if the member has a direct or indirect interest in the outcome of the proceedings, or if there are other reasons for which the member’s impartiality may be in doubt. In such an event, the member of the Court shall be removed upon his/her own application, or upon the application of an interested person.
2.5 The Court is convened by, and its proceedings led by, the Court chairperson. Minutes of the Court’s proceedings are kept. The Court chairperson shall designate the secretary for the proceedings.
2.6 The Court shall make its decisions on the basis of a simple majority. In the event of a tied vote, the chairperson shall have the deciding vote.
3.1 The person who submits an application for the resolution of a dispute to the Court is the applicant; the person about whom the statement was made is the person concerned (hereinafter Party or Parties).
3.2 During the proceedings, the Parties have equal rights and obligations.
3.3 Parties have the right:
3.3.1 to take part in Court proceedings in person or through a representative;
3.3.2. to have access to all of the submitted materials, and to make copies or transcripts thereof;
3.3.3. to submit petitions of challenge and applications;
3.3.4. to give to the Court statements, and to submit evidence, reasons, and considerations to all questions posed during the Court proceedings;
3.3.5. to retract their statements at any time;
3.3.6. to receive the decision of the Court as a separate document;
3.3.7. to appeal the decision or order of the Court to the Board of the Chamber.
3.4. Parties have the obligation:
3.4.1. to take part in proceedings upon the request of the Court;
3.4.2. to use all the rights listed in section 3.3 in good faith;
3.4.3. to bear all costs that may arise in the course of the proceedings.
4.1. Evidence is any type of notice, document, or record on which basis the Court shall determine the presence or absence of the Parties’ demands and objections, as well as other circumstances relevant to the dispute.
4.2. During the proceedings, either Party must prove the facts on which the claims and complaints are based. Evidence shall be submitted either on the Party’s own initiative or at the request of the Court. Generally known facts are not required to be proved.
4.3. The Court may, at the request of a Party, call witnesses. All expenses incurred in connection with the hearing of the witness shall be borne by the Party at whose request the witness was called.
4.4 The Court is required to determine the facts relevant to the matter at hand and, if necessary, to collect evidence on its own initiative.
V. Rulings of the Court
5.1. The Court may exercise the following powers as given to it within its mandate:
5.1.1. making a decision to terminate the proceedings;
5.1.2. dismissing the application without review;
5.1.3. resolving the dispute through its own decision;
5.1.4. issuing its decision or recommendation as a regulation, without making a decision on the applicant’s complaint.
5.2. The proceedings shall be terminated without a decision being made if the Court finds that the application is not within its competence, the Party submitting the application withdraws it, an agreement is reached by the Parties, or the application is submitted either simultaneously or during the proceedings for adjudication in a court of the Republic of Estonia.
5.2.1. Proceedings are terminated by a decision of the Court, in which the reason for the termination is stated.
5.2.2. Once a proceeding is terminated, an applicant may not again approach the Court in the same dispute on the same basis.
5.3. The Court shall refuse to review an application if the application is submitted by a person who does not have the authority to represent the applicant.
5.4. Oral arguments in the Court shall be postponed if one or both Parties do not appear. If the Party against whom the application was submitted does not appear twice at a hearing, the Court shall issue a decision in absentia. If the applicant does not appear at a hearing without good reason, the proceedings shall be terminated without the taking of a decision.
5.5. A decision or ruling is made in writing and shall be signed by the chairperson of the Court.
5.6. The decision or ruling shall be forwarded to the Parties and to the Board of the Chamber. The decision must be substantiated.
5.7. The Court may determine a disciplinary penalty for an offender, which may include:
5.7.1. a reprimand;
5.7.2. a fine totalling up to one quarter’s membership dues;
5.7.3. a proposal to the Board of the Chamber on exclusion from the Chamber;
5.7.4. a proposal to the Certification Committee on the revocation of professional certification;
5.7.5. a proposal to the Board of the Chamber on exclusion from the Register of Real Estate Agents.
5.8. A disciplinary penalty may be set together with public disclosure. When disclosing information publicly, personal data processing requirements must be followed.
5.9. A Party may appeal a decision within 10 (ten) days of receiving the decision. Appeals are submitted to the Board of the Chamber. If no appeal is submitted within the time limits set, the decision shall enter into force.
5.10. The appeal shall be reviewed by the Board of the Chamber within 30 (thirty) days of receipt.
5.11. In order to avoid similar disputes in the future, the Court may issue recommendations to all members of the Chamber and professional brokers, and/or proposals to recommendation, to a specific individual specified in an application, for the clearer and better solution of the issue. These recommendations and proposals are issued as decisions of the Board of the Chamber or as rulings of the Court.