Check professional qualifications
Checking professional qualifications, logos and claims of approval
Many businesses advertise their services using professional qualifications or logos denoting membership of or approval by a professional organisation. There are ways that consumer can test these claims made by the businesses.
- Research in advance what service you require.
This is particularly important when choosing an allied health professional or complementary health practitioner – for example a chiropractor and a physiotherapist offer different services but people often think they are the same. You should consult your GP before using such a service as they will be able to guide you on what is required and whether the service will conflict with any orthodox treatment you are receiving.
- Look at what qualifications are required by personnel of the business to provide the standard of service you require.
A search of the internet will allow you to access the websites of various qualification and trade bodies to find out more. Some businesses are regulated or registered by Government organisations or have trade bodies based on the Island. You will find a list below of some of these.
- Ask the business to show you their personnel’s qualification certificates.
If they are unable to do so you may choose to look for another business which can prove that their personnel have the appropriate qualifications.
- Make a note of the qualifications and the qualification bodies shown on the certificates. If you are concerned that the qualification may not be satisfactory you may be able to find out the information you require from the qualification body.
- Ask the business what practical experience the personnel have so you are satisfied that they are not only qualified but also experienced in providing the service you require.
Membership logos and claims of approval by professional organisations
Logos denoting membership of or approval by a professional or Government organisation may be legitimately used to promote business interests.
Their misuse however, deliberate or otherwise, can result in you being misled over the standard of service provided, the training or qualification of the businesses personnel, the businesses’ compliance with rules or codes of conduct and the existence of complaints/arbitration procedures.
- If a business uses a logo to promote its services ask for the details of the body concerned.
Contact them and ask whether the business is a member or has been approved by that body and what standards of service they have met to achieve this.
- If you have any concerns that a business is falsely using a logo or claiming to be a member of or be approved by a body you should contact the Isle of Man Office of Fair Trading.