The North Carolina Auctioneers Association has adopted the following "Code of Ethics" of the National Auctioneers Association.
The National Auctioneers Association is the professional organization for practicing auctioneers, their associates, affiliated businesses and other related professionals. Membership in the NAA although voluntary, carries with it a requirement of professional commitment to other professionals, Clients, customers and the public at large that extends beyond that of laws and professional regulations. Members of the NAA accept this obligation to conduct themselves and their businesses in a manner that serves the public interest, protects the public trust and furthers the goals of their profession.
This Code of Ethics of the National Auctioneers Association and the accompanying Standards of Practice guides the Members in the performance of their professional responsibilities and duties. Complaints can be filed against NAA Members who do not adhere to the Code of Ethics and shall be handled in accordance with the procedures established by the Board of Directors.
Members pledge to lawfully and ethically protect and promote the interests of the seller (from now on referred to as the Client).
Members owe the buyer (from now on referred to as the Customer) the duties of honesty, integrity and fair dealing at all times.
Members shall not accept compensation related to a Client's matter from any third party, even if permitted by law, without the full knowledge of all the parties to the transaction.
Members shall disclose any potential conflict of interest to a current or potential Client.
Members shall not make a profit on expenditures made for a Client without the Client's prior and expressed consent.
Members shall not engage in activities that constitute the unauthorized practice of law.
Members shall maintain a separate and designated account in an appropriate financial institution to maintain monies coming into their possession in trust for other persons such as escrows or trust funds.
Members shall not disclose any confidential Client information without the Client's prior, expressed consent, unless required by law.
Members shall not misrepresent or conceal material facts.
Members are duty bound at all times to abide by the laws and regulations which govern them.
Members shall report violations of the Code of Ethics and participate in all investigations and disciplinary proceedings when requested.
A Member's conviction of a felony involving the Member acting as an auctioneer, or otherwise participating in an auction, shall be deemed a violation of the Code of Ethics and result in discipline determined by the Board of Directors.
During the period that a Member owes an unpaid and unsatisfied civil, criminal, or regulatory cost, damage, fine, judgment, penalty, sanction, or other amount which was awarded, entered, levied, or ordered against the Member by an agency, authority, board, bureau, commission, court, department, or other arm of government shall result in the Member being in violation of the Code of Ethics and subject to discipline determined by the Board of Directors.
A Member's auctioneer license is revoked by a licensing authority in any jurisdiction within the United States, for misconduct, wrongdoing, or another violation that occurred in connection with the Member acting as an auctioneer, or otherwise participating in an auction shall result in a Member being deemed in violation of the Code of Ethics and subject to discipline as determined by the Board of Directors.
PROCEDURE FOR COMPLAINT OF THE CODE OF ETHICS
Upon receipt of a written complaint alleging that a Member has violated the Code of Ethics, the Chief Executive Officer shall forward a copy of such written complaint to the accused Member and request that the accused Member provide a response in writing to such charges. The complainant and the written response shall be forwarded by the CEO to the Grievance Committee with the names of the complainant and accused Member redacted. The Grievance Committee shall thereafter undertake an investigation of the complaint and make a written report to the Board of Directors concerning said complaint. If there is a finding of no violation, the Member shall be notified.
If the finding includes a recommendation to the Board of Directors stating that there is a reasonable cause to believe that such Member has engaged in conduct in violation of the Code of Ethics, the Member against whom the complaint has been made will be notified of that decision and afforded an opportunity to respond to the complaint including allowing the accused to appear before the Board of Directors and present evidence in support of the Member position with the right of the Member to hire and be represented by counsel at such or hearing.
The parties may introduce such documentary evidence and present such testimony of witnesses, sworn by the Past President, as the Board of Directors shall reasonably deem relevant to the issues and both sides of the controversy shall be accorded a full opportunity to be heard. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board of Directors, as soon as it is practically possible, but not later than two (2) weeks thereafter, shall consider the evidence and render a written opinion and decision.
Should the Board of Directors find a violation of the Code of Ethics, the Board of Directors shall also determine the discipline to be assessed which may include private censure, public censure, suspension and/or revocation from Membership. The decision shall be conveyed to the Member by certified mail.
STANDARDS OF PRACTICE
The following Standards of Practice are provided to encourage the highest standards of conduct among the Membership of National Auctioneers Association. These guidelines are a companion document to the Code of Ethics for the NAA. While the Standards of Practice may not be enforced with Membership sanctions, these guidelines should nonetheless be promoted, practiced and encouraged by NAA Members. Non-compliance of these guidelines should be self-policed by fellow NAA Members.