From time to time disputes arise between videographers and their clients; and this is where the IOVs Arbitration Service can be employed to achieve a fair and amicable settlement. The IOV offers this service free to its members. The dictionary defines the word ‘arbiter’ as: “One chosen by parties in controversy to decide between them” – and that is exactly how the IOVs Arbitration Officer works to resolve a problem. This service does not affect the statutory rights of the member nor the client.
4.2 Arbitration outside of the IOV
The IOV Arbitration Officer is authorised to act as an Independent Expert Witness in disputes involving non-members. Other IOV members may also be given authority by the Executive to represent the IOV in individual cases and to charge a reasonable fee for the services they provide in doing so. Under no circumstances must individual members purport to represent the IOV without the prior agreement of the Executive in writing.
4.3 General Advice
The IOV has successfully arbitrated in many forms of dispute, but the majority of cases seem to fall within the following categories: equipment disputes with manufacturers, distributors and dealers; client disputes; and insurance disputes. Our general advice to members is that you should keep accurate records of written correspondence and notes of telephone conversations when disputes arise. These will assist the Arbitration Officer to conclude the case to everyone’s satisfaction.
Upon the realisation that you are going to experience a problem – contact the Arbitration Officer. Advice will be given as to your next move, and how best the Arbitration Office can help to resolve the problem. It should be noted that although the IOV Arbitration Service offers itself as an expert witness service, its officers are not necessarily legally trained or qualified as solicitors, though the Arbitration Officer may be a Qualified Arbitrator. If you are already involved in written correspondence you should send copies to the Arbitration Officer, and ensure that your customer or supplier is notified that the IOVs Arbitration Officer is involved.
A professional organisation must command respect and it cannot do this by endorsing substandard work or unprofessional conduct that ultimately reflects on each and every member. Our commitment to quality is very real and it applies to arbitration in the same way that it does to any other aspect of video production.
Disciplinary matters are also dealt with by the Arbitration Officer who can recommend to the Executive that a member should be suspended, down-graded or expelled. All matters are dealt with in a confidential and professional manner with the objective being a just settlement which upholds the reputation of the IOV and its Membership.
When an IOV member signs the declaration at the end of the Membership Application Form, he or she is agreeing to abide by the IOV’s Code of Practice (see Section 2 – Code of Practice) – it is this document that is used as the basis for disciplinary decisions.