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Within 45 days of receiving a Complaint, the Committee shall determine whether sufficient information exists to proceed with a formal investigation of the Complaint. The Committee shall not proceed until such time as the Committee is satisfied that the Complainant has complied with all procedural requirements. If the Complainant refuses to have his/her/its name known to the ABC Credential Holder, the Committee shall not consider the matter unless it determines to proceed with the Complaint based on independent verifiable information. If the Committee concludes that an investigation of the Complaint is not warranted, it shall notify the Complainant in writing within 30 days of its determination.
If the Committee determines that a formal investigation of the Complaint should ensue, it shall notify the Complainant and ABC Credential Holder in writing within 30 days of its determination. The notification sent by the Committee to the ABC Credential Holder shall include the Complaint and all supplemental information submitted with the Complaint, including the specific Section(s) of the Code that the ABC Credential Holder is alleged to have violated. The notification shall include a copy of the Code and the Rules. The notification will contain the name of the Complainant.
The ABC Credential Holder is required to provide to the Committee his/her/its written response within 15 days from the date of the notification sent by the Committee. The ABC Credential Holder’s response must be complete, accurate and fully responsive to the Complaint and any and all Committee inquiries. The response and supporting documents must be legible and may not exceed 20 pages without the Committee’s prior written approval. If the ABC Credential Holder fails to respond to the Committee's request, the Committee may, at its discretion, send a one-time, second and final request for a response. Failure to respond, or any other unwarranted delay by the ABC Credential Holder, or the lack of the ABC Credential Holder’s cooperation, shall in no way prevent the continuation or conclusion of the proceedings by the Committee as it deems fit in its sole and absolute discretion.
If, after receipt of the ABC Credential Holder’s response, the Committee determines that additional information is warranted from either or both the Complainant or the ABC Credential Holder, or from any third party, it shall notify the Complainant and the ABC Credential Holder in writing of the request for additional information. The parties shall provide the additional information no later than 15 days from the date of the request for additional information.
During a formal investigation, through final disposition of a Complaint, all information to be considered by the Committee that is shared by the Complainant and the ABC Credential Holder shall be shared with the other party.
Once all of the information has been received pursuant to Rules R5.3 and R5.4, the Committee may conclude that the Complaint has no basis in fact, is insufficient or is likely to be corrected on its own merit and, therefore, may determine to close the case without further action. Such decision shall be made within 45 days of the Committee’s receipt of all of the information. If the Committee determines to close the case, it shall inform both the Complainant and the ABC Credential Holder in writing.