When is it valid to request a Private Survey?

We have written many articles about inspection services and DRC’s Good Inspection Guidelines.  We believe we have been able to relay why a government inspection, such as a CFIA inspection or a USDA inspection, has more weight than a private survey. Nevertheless, we understand that sometimes a private survey may be necessary. Here are some instances where a private survey would help a buyer/receiver claim damages:

  • Where government inspection services are not available. To our knowledge, Canada and the USA are the only countries that provide this service.
  • Where government inspection services are available but cannot be performed in a timely manner. When a request for a government inspection is submitted you can ask for an estimated time of performance of the inspection. If inspectors are not available within 24 hours, you should talk to your supplier/seller about it and discuss the possibility of requesting a private survey. Do not cancel the request for a government inspection unless you have secured a written agreement with your vendor for a private survey.
  • When there is a written agreement between buyer and seller to have a private survey performed. We understand the fast pace of our industry and that many deals are done over the phone. However, a verbal agreement is only valid when both parties still have the same recollection of what was discussed and agreed upon, therefore, it is crucial to confirm it in writing.

We would also like to remind you that government inspections are considered “prima facie” evidence. In other words, a government inspection is sufficient to prove damages or the lack thereof. A private survey can always be challenged when the survey report fails to address all of the twelve elements stated in DRC’s Good Inspection Guidelines.

For more information see DRC’s Inspection Guidelines. You can also call our office and request this document be emailed to you.

DRC Help Desk | 613-234-0982 |