Hanzo Design fined £24,318 for illegal use of ‘architect’ title

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Tatsiana Aliaksavana and her company Hanzo Design were each convicted of four charges of the criminal offence of misusing the title ‘architect’ and were fined £24,318

The charges related to claims made on the Hanzo Design website and in its metadata.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard that Hanzo Design continued to promote its services as being provided by “experienced architects” despite having no architects at the practice, in breach of Section 20 of the Architects Act 1997. The company continued to do so despite numerous warnings from ARB, the regulator of UK architects.

The magistrates imposed the maximum fine of £2,500 for each charge and a further £4,318 in costs and surcharges, creating a total of £24,318 to be paid within 28 days. Giving their reasoning behind imposing the maximum fines available, the magistrates noted the offences included identity theft and posed a risk to public safety. They also noted the defendant’s reluctance to engage with ARB and their absence from court.

It is hoped that the criminal convictions, fines and the negative publicity associated with cases such as this will act as a deterrent for others who may use the title illegally.

In regulating the misuse of the title ‘architect’, ARB aims to limit the harm as swiftly and effectively as possible. ARB has said it will continue to monitor Hanzo Design’s trading style and take further appropriate action as necessary.

2 COMMENTS

  1. For decades ARB is trying to protect the title “achitect”, but this is not working any more. I have seen many “project architects” who are not members of ARB. Very rarely these are prosecuted… Similarly IT industry is using “IT architect” and ” Network Architect” , i dont see ARB going after IT guys and suing them for the title “Architect”. Instead of protecting the title ARB should be protecting the profession. Fully qualified Architects earn £30-40k which is extremely low in comparison with IT architects or lawers, doctors etc… but still requires 7 year of studying… ARB should doing more for architects!

  2. Instead of protecting the title ARB should be protecting the profession. ARB should doing more for architects!

    For decades ARB is trying to protect the title “achitect”, but this is not working any more. I have seen many “project architects” who are not members of ARB. Very rarely these are prosecuted… Similarly IT industry is using “IT architect” and ” Network Architect” , i dont see ARB going after IT guys and suing them for the title “Architect”.

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