THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
OF THE CZECH CHAMBER OF ARCHITECTS
In accordance with Section 30 subs. 1, Section 23 subs. 6, para. h) and Section 25, subs. 4, para. b) of Act no. 360/1992 Coll. on the Professional Practice of Certified Architects Construction, as amended by Acts nos. 164/1993 Coll., 275/1994 Coll. and 224/2003 Coll. (hereinafter referred to as the ”Act”) and implementing some provisions of this Act,
conscious of its co-responsibility for the world, nature and the culture of past, present and future generations,
conscious of its duty to respect and protect the interests of society as well as the local community in relation to the building and shaping of the environment as one of the basic expressions of culture,
conscious of its duty to respect and protect the legitimate interests of the client,
and in an effort to further the profession and the independent, honorable and professional practice of architecture,
in an effort to cultivate and protect collegial relations among architects,
and, finally, in an effort to protect the legitimate professional interests of architects
d e c l a r e s
t h i s
CODE OF CONDUCT
OF THE CZECH CHAMBER OF ARCHITECTS
adopted on the 16th of April, 1994,
and amended on the 29th of April, 1995,
the 28th of April 1998,
the 13th of April 1999,
the 20th of April 2002,
and the 24th April 2004
(1) The professional practice of a certified architect, urban planner, garden or landscape architect (hereinafter referred to as ”architect”) is the creative authorial activity of a highly qualified professional requiring long training and specialized professional experience, and having significant influence on the health, lives and property of citizens as well as on the natural and cultural environment, provided to individual clients without anonymity.
(2) This Code of Conduct sets forth the rights and obligations of certified architects and certified designers of environmentally stable land-use systems in the practice of their profession in relation to:
a) the profession,
b) the client,
d) other architects, and
e) the Czech Chamber of Architects (hereinafter referred to as the ”Chamber”).
(3) Unless otherwise specified by the Act or this Code, the provisions of this Code also govern the rights and obligations of registered persons resident in or visiting the Czech Republic while practicing the profession.
OBLIGATIONS OF ARCHITECTS
IN RELATION TO THE PROFESSION
An architect makes every effort to promote the good name of architecture and architects.
(1) An architect is responsible for the professional quality of his/her professional practice, in particular for the professional quality of documents to which his/her stamp and signature are affixed, and for the professional quality of works effectuated according to his/her proposals, designs or plans. To this end, an architect exercises authorial supervision over such effectuation or further processing.
(2) Documents drawn up in accordance with professional standards of services and documentation issued by the Chamber shall be considered as documents meeting the demands of professional quality level.
(3) An architect who is not practicing the profession for serious and demonstrable reasons is entitled to suspend his/her certification under the conditions set forth by the Act on Professional Practice and by this Code of Conduct, particularly with regard to the provisions of Section 6 subs. 9.
(1) An architect continues his/her education in the field and keeps up to date with professional information, in particular as necessary for
a) Carrying out his/her own designing and planning activities and providing corresponding professional services, and
b) Operation and management both of his/her office and of commissions,
in order to protect and maintain the qualification level already reached, to raise it and to keep up with new directions in theory and practice; for this same purpose he/she also seeks professional and legal information and consultations for his/her commissions, if their nature requires it.
(2) The following are particularly recognized forms of life-long education:
a) Postgraduate study at universities and other professional institutions,
b) Integrated study and educational courses and programs,
c) Participation in lectures, seminars and conferences,
d) Working in professional internships, and
e) Participation in individual and collective exhibitions and participation in competitive exhibitions.
(1) When providing professional services beyond the scope of his/her certification, an architect is obligated to ask a person with certification in the relevant discipline or specialization to collaborate.
(2) Even for activities falling within the scope of his/her certification, an architect is obligated to seek another architect’s collaboration, if the nature or particular difficulty of the activities so require.
Use of the seal and certificate
(1) An architect affixes the seal bearing the national emblem (hereinafter referred to as the ”seal”) and his/her signature and the date of issue to documents related to the performance of his/her activity. A resident registered person affixes the seal bearing the Chamber’s emblem and his/her signature and the date of issue to the documents specified in Subsection 5 paras. b) through d) inclusive. A visiting registered person affixes his/her signature and the registration number under which he/she is recorded in the registry of registered persons and the date of issue to the documents specified in Subsection 5 paras. b) through d) inclusive.
(2) In case of doubt, an architect or registered person is obligated, at the request of administrative authorities in administrative proceedings for which he/she has prepared documentation, to demonstrate his/her right to engage in such activities at the administration proceedings for which he/she has drawn up the documents and to present the certificate establishing certification or registration by the Czech Chamber of Architects.
(3) The architect affixes the seal and his/her signature only to documents, which he/she has prepared personally or in collaboration with other certified or registered persons, or other natural persons working under his/her professional supervision.
(4) For official purposes documents affixed with the seal become public records and are protected by law. This provision is not deemed to waive any right to intellectual property, particularly the copyright.
(5) The seal is used solely for the designation of
a) Land-planning documents,
b) Documents for planning permit which are a part of the application for commencement of planning proceedings,
c) Documents for building or occupancy permits which are the basic data documents for building or occupancy proceedings,
d) Expert findings and opinions which have the character of official documents including records in the building log,
e) Documents for the construction of a building.
(6) If the documents according to Section 5 are prepared as a single unit without attachments, the seal is affixed only to this unit, which is then registered as such in the chronological record of the seal’s use. If the documents are a set of separate documents not combined in a single unit, then each of the documents must be affixed with the seal but the set is registered as only one item in the record of the seal’s use, with an indication of the number of attachments affixed with the seal .
(7) The seal shall not be used for any other purposes apart from those stated in Section 5. Misuse of the seal may lead to the initiation of disciplinary proceedings by the Professional Court of the Czech Chamber of Architects.
(8) An architect whose certification or registration has been withdrawn or who has given up his/her certification or registration voluntarily is obligated to deliver the seal as well as his/her Certificate to the Office of the Chamber without unnecessary delay and at the latest within 10 days of the effective date of the decision on certification withdrawal or of the notification date about giving up the certification or registration. An architect whose certification or registration has been withdrawn or who has given up his/her certification or registration is obligated to notify the professional bodies of other countries where he/she is practicing professionally as a visiting person of this fact.
(9) An architect, whose certification or registration has been suspended, shall deposit the seal as well as the Certificate in the Office of the Chamber without unnecessary delay and at the latest within 10 days of the effective date of the decision or of the notification date about suspension of the certification or registration. Should the certification or registration be suspended at the architect's own request and for an indefinite period, the architect shall notify the Office of the Chamber of the day when his/her suspension of his/her certification or registration is to end and this notification shall be made no later than five days in advance. An architect whose certification or registration has been suspended, is obligated to notify the professional bodies of other countries where he/she is practicing professionally as a visiting person of this fact.
(10) In the event of the loss of his/her certification or registration seal or of the Certificate, an architect shall immediately notify the Chamber. By failing to do so, he/she may face disciplinary proceedings and runs the risk of being held responsible for possible misuse of his/her seal or Certificate by another person.
(11) An architect may ask the Chamber for a replacement seal or Certificate in the following cases:
a) Damage to the seal or to the Certificate; he/she may apply for replacement immediately after delivery of the damaged original to the Office of the Chamber,
b) Loss of the seal or the certificate or registration document; he/she may apply for replacement within one month after notification of the Chamber about his/her loss, during which period the architect will do his/her best to find the missing seal.
When a replacement seal or Certificate or registration document is issued, the architect will pay all costs related to their production. The replacement seal or Certificate shall be distinctly marked as a replacement.
(1) An architect supports only regular architectural competitions.
(2) An architect shall not participate in architectural competitions, which have not been put out in compliance with the valid Competition Code of the Chamber.
(3) An architect shall not participate in events, which have not been put out as regular architectural competitions even if they have the characteristics of such competitions. In particular, competitions of tenders for suitable designers, which require or anticipate the preparation or submission of proposals, schematic designs, plans or designs whose nature corresponds to works and services specified in the document ”Services and Remunerations of Architects”. This provision does not apply to cases of the parallel preparation of the same commission by several mutually independent designers, if based on a proper contract with the client including provisions on remuneration or if based on a duly signed letter of intent specifying the services to be rendered, the price and deadline or if the work is performed in a standard way on the basis of an order by a client, who then includes this work in the offer or solicitation of bids, in which he/she participates at his/her discretion.
(4) An architect is obligated to inform the Chamber about any irregular architectural competition or event mentioned in Subsection 3 which he/she has learned of.
(5) Subsections 1 though 4 apply also to an architect's sitting on juries of competitions.
An architect shall not accept any commission whose nature is clearly in conflict with the public interest or which significantly threatens cultural or natural values. An architect applies this approach especially in cases where the Chamber has declared a commission to be such.
For purposes of advertising, the architect uses solely the results of his/her own work or work in which he/she had a significant role as the author. It is prohibited to use for advertisements the results of someone else's work or resources bearing no relation to the profession of architect, or any false data. Any advertisement harming the reputation of the profession is not admissible.
FORMS OF INDEPENDENT PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE
(1) An independent architect practices his/her profession at his/her sole responsibility and in his/her own name as a natural person, as a member of an association in an association of natural persons or as a partner in an unlimited public company under conditions governed by special legal regulation1a.
(2) An independent architect may not be engaged in employment or similar relationships and may not perform activities threatening the independence of his/her practice. However, scientific, educational, journalistic, literary or any other artistic activity, expert activity pursuant to the special legal regulation1b and management of his/her own property are not barriers to professional practice, and therefore an architect is entitled to become a member of the statutory body of a juridical person in which he/she has a property interest only on the condition that he/she does not provide his/her professional performances and services pursuant to the Act through such juridical person.
Architect doing business under special regulations
- An architect engaging in business under special regulations practices the profession on his/her responsibility and independently under the name of a commercial company or other juridical or natural person other than his/hers, either alone or together with other persons; certification or registration is a condition for doing business as a commercial company or any other juridical person. An architect as a partner, member, member of a statutory body or an employee of a company or another juridical person is obligated to observe the conditions of independent professional practice and the obligations set forth by the Act and internal Codes of the Chamber and to promote them in activities of a commercial company or another juridical person.
(2) An architect doing business under special regulations is obligated to take care not to limit, when conducting his/her professional practice, his/her independence and responsibility pursuant to the Act; he/she is especially obligated to prevent interventions of his/her partners, or members, or executives of a commercial company or other juridical person, who are not certified or registered persons, in the performance of selected activities in construction and in the provision of related professional services, such as may threaten the architect’s independence in performing these activities and providing these services.
Architect as employee
An employed architect conducts his/her profession in employment, service or other similar relationships on the condition that his/her employer does not obstruct him/her in the fulfillment of his/her duties as a certified or registered architect, especially in the responsible and independent performance of selected activities in construction and provision of related professional services. This should be expressly stated in his/her employment or similar contract. Otherwise, the provisions of this Code apply appropriately to the architect as employee.
OBLIGATIONS OF THE ARCHITECT
IN RELATION TO HIS/HER CLIENT
(1) An architect's main task in relation to his/her client is to ensure, according to the client's requirements and interests and within valid legal regulations and taking the public interests into account, the professional quality of his/her proposed or planned work, as well as of all his/her services.
(2) An architect provides the client, in connection with a commission, with all necessary professional information, in particular if a proper contract for this commission has already been signed.
Conflict of interest
(1) An architect prevents a conflict of interest from arising in relation to his/her client. A conflict of interest between an architect and the client is considered to be, in particular, a case where the subject matter of the commission is related to some other activity, property or other interests of the architect which are or may be misused in favor of the architect and to the detriment of the client.
(2) If there is a danger of a conflict of interest between an architect and the client, the architect is obligated to warn the client without delay.
(3) An architect shall withdraw from a commission or signed contract at the request of the client in the event of an obvious conflict of interest of the architect.
(1) An architect shall consider and keep information on clients obtained during his/her practice confidential. The obligation of confidentiality extends also to persons whose certification has been suspended, has been withdrawn, or has been given up voluntarily. This provision does not concern the publication of professional information on a completed commission.
(2) Only the client can release an architect from the obligation of confidentiality.
(3) The confidentiality obligation does not apply in cases where an architect learns of acts or intentions of the client which infringe or may infringe on valid legal regulations including internal Codes of the Chamber.
(1) An architect is obligated to take out professional liability insurance. The policy must last for the entire guarantee period agreed in the contract or set forth by a special legal regulation1c.
(2) An architect is obligated to inform the client in advance of the scope of his/her insurance coverage.
(1) An architect is obligated to prevent disputes with the client, especially by timely, proper and complete negotiation of contractual terms and conditions.
(2) The document ”Services and Remunerations of Architects”, and other professional documents published by the Czech Chamber of Architects, particularly the standard forms of contracts and standards of professional services and documentation shall serve as the basis for negotiation of contract terms and conditions.
(3) The terms and conditions for the proper service of the authorial supervision shall be an integral part of such a contractual relationship.
(1) An architect or his/her employer provides his/her services for remuneration (offering price) the level of which shall not be exceptionally low and inadequate2. The recommended basis for determining an offering price for the architect's services is the document ”Services and Remunerations of Architects”.
(2) Any remuneration, which does not guarantee preparation of full, correct, executable and safe documents and does not correspond to professional standards of services and documentation3 and, in particular, any remuneration which does not reach the level of the costs expended for work on the subject of the commission and does not contribute to generation of adequate profit3a is considered to be exceptionally low and inadequate remuneration (offering price).
(3) If an architect also provides other services, for example construction, he/she is obligated to charge remuneration for architectural services apart from these other items.
(4) In special, especially humanitarian, cases, an architect or his/her employer may ignore the provisions of Subsection 1.
An architect shall not transfer the work of a commission to another person without the client's consent. Nevertheless, he/she may, subject to provisions set forth by law, use his/her co-workers, employees or subcontractors for this work.
(1) An architect shall not accept a commission if he/she is, for whatever reason, unable to carry it out properly.
(2) In the event an architect cannot, for legitimate reasons, properly finish the work of the commission, he/she shall promptly inform the client, and, according to need and capabilities, recommend or arrange for a replacement architect to finish the commission.
OBLIGATIONS OF THE ARCHITECT
IN RELATION TO SOCIETY
An architect adheres to the vows he/she made when being granted a certification.
An architect observes applicable generally binding law and internal Codes of the Chamber.
An architect prevents any conflict of interest from arising in relation to both professionals and laymen, particularly avoiding situations where he/she would judge, while performing professional administrative activities, in a matter for which he/she has personally prepared documents for the client or for which he/she has prepared a professional assessment essential as a basis for a decision.
Depending on the needs and capabilities, an architect, especially if asked for it, provides the public and its elected representatives with professional information and explanations serving as an orientation on professional issues, especially if these concern the public interest. Doing so does not offend Section 18 subs. 1 hereof.
OBLIGATIONS OF THE ARCHITECT
IN RELATION TO OTHER ARCHITECTS
An architect shall provide, on request and according to the capabilities, professional consultation to another architect.
(1) An architect respects and protects the rights to intellectual property especially copyrights4 of other architects as well those of any other person. An architect also avoids misuse of his/her copyrights with regards to these persons.
(2) An architect shall name on his/her documents as a whole, in addition to his/her seal and signature, all persons who have participated as authors in the preparation of these documents.
(3) An architect shall not take over a partially prepared commission without informing the original author. Before taking over the commission, the architect shall inform the original author immediately and in writing about the commission and verify whether the original author and client have duly settled accounts. The original author is obligated to respond to this written notification within a period of one month of its receipt and by failing to do so he/she shall be considered to consent. If the original author and the client have not duly settled accounts, the architect will not take over the partially prepared commission unless the requirements of the original author are obviously inappropriate considering the contract concluded between him/her and the client and the copyright of the original author will not be breached by taking over the commission.
(4) The architect shall not use the work of another architect for the work of his/her own commission without the express written consent of the author or a concluded license contract.
(5) The architect shall not take over a commission which involves changes to a implemented work, especially if it is a work implemented according to a design, documents or plan of a living architect, without previously apprising the client of this fact. Prior to taking over such commission, the architect shall promptly and demonstrably inform the author of the original design, documents or plan, and, if possible, ask for his/her opinion or consultation on the commission, or invite him/her to collaborate on it.
(1) An architect shall avoid criticism of another architect or his/her work which is solely or mainly motivated by a desire to win a commission which the other architect is working on or which is being prepared with the client, or besmirching the good name of the other architect. This does not affect the right to provide professional criticisms or expert opinions or statements, nor does it affect the architect's right to offer services to a client even if other architects have also offered services to the same client on the same commission.
(2) An architect shall particularly avoid utterances that can unjustifiably and intentionally besmirch the good name of another architect; particularly avoiding insults and slander. However, this provision does not prevent an architect from disputes with another architect or from pointing out justifiably his/her faults and omissions. Nevertheless, an architect shall always do so in a professional manner.
OBLIGATIONS OF THE ARCHITECT
IN RELATION TO THE CHAMBER
When negotiating with clients, the public, public administration authorities or other entities, an architect respects the Chamber and its Codes, decisions and statements. This does not affect his/her right to criticize the Chamber for the purpose of rectification.
When officially communicating with the Chamber, an architect provides only true, correct and, whenever possible, complete information.
Duty to Notify
(1) An architect shall promptly notify the Chamber of all facts or changes significantly related to his/her certification, method of practice, or his/her record in the registry of certified architects.
(2) The architect is obligated to notify the Chamber of all significant infringements of general regulations concerning the practice of his/her profession or the Chamber's Codes by other architects, public administration authorities or other persons or institutions, which he/she learns of in course of his/her practice.
An architect is obligated to provide, on request, all information concerning his/her professional practice and related issues to the relevant bodies of the Chamber.
(1) In the event that an architect has not been practicing for a long period, he/she may suspend his/her certification by notification to the Chamber and deposition of his/her seal in the Chamber’s Office.
(2) The certification may be suspended either for a definite period or until further notice. The certification can be suspended only once in twelve months.
If the architect does not deposit, in contradiction to a final and conclusive decision on withdrawal or suspension of certification and registration or in contradiction with his/her own decision to give up or suspend certification or registration, his/her certification or registration seal and the Certificate or registration document under terms and conditions set forth by the Act and in the time-limit set forth by this Code, the Chamber is obligated and entitled in accordance with provision of Section 22a subs. 4 of the Act and Section 8 of the Organization, Procedure and Election Code to enforce fulfillment of this obligation.
If nominated, an architect is obligated to accept an elected office in the Chamber for at least one term of office. He/she may refuse to accept this office for a single term only for very serious reasons.
This Code took effect upon its adoption at the General Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Architects held on the 16th of April 1994.
This Code, as amended, took effect upon its adoption at the General Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Architects held on the 28th of April 1995.
This Code, as amended, took effect upon its adoption at the General Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Architects held on the 28th of April 1998.
This Code, as amended, took effect upon its adoption at the General Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Architects held on the 13th of April 1999.
This Code, as amended, took effect upon its adoption at the General Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Architects held on the 20th of April 2002.
This Code, as amended, took effect upon its adoption at the General Assembly of the Czech Chamber of Architects held on the 24th of April 2004.