BrokerageIndustry News

NAR counsel lays down laws for real estate brokers

Most lawsuits against brokers involve allegations of misrepresentation

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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Misrepresentation claims continue to be the largest source of legal troubles for real estate brokers, accounting for about two-thirds of all litigation, said Laurie Janik, general counsel for the National Association of Realtors trade group. Real estate agency laws, antitrust laws, and the federal Fair Housing Act and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act are also a potential source for lawsuits. Janik, speaking today during a risk management and license law session at an annual Realtor conference in Washington, D.C., also noted that most lawsuits against brokers are brought by buyers. Real estate brokers prevail in about two-thirds of the cases brought against them that go to trial, Janik said, according to association statistics for the past decade. And successful lawsuits against brokers relating to Fair Housing Act violations, breach of fiduciary duties and antitrust violations typically rack up the largest damage amounts. There are three types of m...