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    Default Banned estate agents named and shamed online

    The Office of Fair Trading has launched an online register of estate agents who have been given warnings or banned from working.

    The register allows consumers to search whether the OFT has taken action against firms under the Estate Agents Act 1979, against agents or agencies who have broken the law.

    The online version of the public register was launched on Monday, and can be browsed by date or alphabetically.

    Mike Haley, OFT director of consumer protection, said: "Under the law, estate agents must ensure they act in the best interests of their clients and that both buyers and sellers are treated honestly, fairly and promptly.

    "The online register gives consumers direct access to important information explaining where we have taken action against estate agents."

    The OFT can issue warning orders or take action with a view to banning estate agents where there is evidence that they have committed certain specified offences such as, offences involving fraud, other dishonesty or violence, discriminating on the grounds of race or gender in the course of estate agency work, engaging in residential estate agency work but failing to belong to an approved redress scheme, failing to comply with the requirements of the law, or engaging in specified undesirable practices.

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