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Code of Conduct

The BIID Code of Conduct states the principles and ethical standards for members of the Institute.

The British Institute of Interior Design issues the Code of Conduct and Professional Ethics (hereinafter called 'The Code') for the compliance of all its members, in whatever capacity they practice, in all categories of professional membership.

The Institute is committed to leading and supporting good professional practice and competence in the field of interior design, and its responsibilities to society, clients, fellow interior designers, suppliers and the interior design industry. All members, as a condition of membership of the Institute, undertake to abide by the Code.


COO Katherine Elworthy
COO Katherine Elworthy

It is imperative that the interior design industry is taken as seriously as any other and we therefore require our members to abide by a strict Code of Conduct that reflects professionalism and integrity.

Katherine Elworthy

A. Responsibility to society

  1. Members shall exercise reasonable skill and care in conformity with the normal standards of their interior design profession, competence in the conduct of their business and act at all times with honesty.
  2. In performing professional services, members shall at all times consider the health, safety and welfare of the public.
  3. Members shall accept a professional obligation to enhance quality of life within the community through design excellence.
  4. In performing professional services, members shall not knowingly violate the law or advise or assist clients in conduct they know to be illegal.
  5. Members shall not make misleading, deceptive or false statements or claims regarding their professional qualifications, experience or performance.
  6. Members shall undertake to perform professional services only when they are qualified by education, training or experience to do so.
  7. Members shall endeavour to act in the best interests of ecology and the natural environment and wherever possible to promote the conservation of energy and the recycling of materials.


B. Responsibility to the client

  1. Before accepting an assignment, members shall confirm in writing to the client the scope and nature of the project involved, the interior design services to be performed, and the method of remuneration for those services.
  2. Members shall provide the client with written terms and conditions of employment prior to commencement of work.
  3. Members shall not knowingly accept any position in which their personal interests conflict with their professional duty.
  4. Members shall treat all knowledge and information relating to their clients' intentions, production methods and/or business as confidential and shall not divulge such information without the consent of the client. Notwithstanding the above, however, members may reveal such information to the extent they reasonably believe is necessary (1) to stop any act which creates a significant risk to public health and safety and which the member is unable to prevent in any other manner, or (2) to prevent any violation of applicable law.
  5. Members shall act with fiscal responsibility in the best interest of the client and shall maintain sound business relations with suppliers, industry and trades to ensure the best possible service.
  6. Members shall not sub-contract the principal design work commissioned by a client without the client's full knowledge and consent.
  7. Members shall not accept payments or benefits which may impair their ability to remain impartial and transparent in all their dealings on behalf of clients
  8. Members shall ensure that clients are advised of their own responsibilities.

C. Responsibility to other interior designers and colleagues

  1. Members shall neither accept instructions from their clients which knowingly involve plagiarism, nor shall they knowingly copy the work of another designer.
  2. Members shall neither attempt, directly or indirectly, to supplant another designer, nor compete with another designer by means of any unfair inducement.
  3. Members shall not knowingly accept any professional engagement upon which another designer has been acting, without notifying that designer.

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D. Responsibility to the Institute and the interior design profession

  1. Members shall seek continually to upgrade their professional knowledge and competence with regard to the interior design profession.
  2. Members shall carry appropriate insurance, to include Employers' Liability, Public Liability, Product Liability and Professional Indemnity. Members shall also, where appropriate, carry Directors' and Office Bearers' Insurance.
  3. Members shall comply with CPD requirements as set out by the Institute.
  4. Members shall only use the British Institute of Interior Design appellation in accordance with the current Institute policy.
  5. Any member or company who has not renewed membership of the Institute must remove any logo and initials of the Institute designation from all product literature, advertising and stationery on termination of membership.
  6. Members shall, wherever possible, encourage and contribute to the sharing of knowledge and information among interior designers, the interior design industry and the general public.
  7. Associates shall comply with the requirements of the Institute to upgrade to full Member status once they have acquired six years of education and/or practice within the interior design industry.

E. Responsibilities as an employer

  1. Members shall adhere to the requirements of Employment Law.
  2. Members shall ensure that sub-contractors engaged by them carry insurance cover appropriate to their role, including Public Liability and Employer's Liability.

F. Responsibilities as an employee

  1. Members shall adhere to the agreed contract of employment, and shall not divulge confidential business information to another party.
  2. Members shall not identify as their own any plans or designs prepared by the employer or employer's company.

G. Responsibilities to other consultants, team members and suppliers

  1. Members shall ensure that information provided to consultants and suppliers for the execution of a project is professionally prepared and accurate.

H. Publicity

  1. Members may themselves, or by means of persons or organisations acting on their behalf, promote and publicise their practice provided the advertising material contains only truthful, factual statements and does not breach copyright agreements.

Click here to download the Code of Conduct as a PDF.


Whilst Members shall conform to existing laws, regulations and professional codes as established by the country in which they conduct their practice, the Institute shall have the power only to enforce its own Code. Any member, who, in the opinion of the Disciplinary Committee of the Institute, has acted in contravention of the Institute's Code, may be cautioned, suspended or expelled from membership. Such action shall only occur after a member has been given the opportunity to answer all allegations of misconduct brought by the Disciplinary Committee. The decision of the Disciplinary Committee shall be final and binding.