BrokerageIndustry News

DOJ, NAR agree to settle antitrust lawsuit

Settlement proposal eliminates broker 'opt-out' provision

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A federal antitrust lawsuit, filed against the National Association of Realtors trade group in 2005 following a two-year investigation, has reached a proposed settlement that calls for the adoption of a new online listings policy. Deborah A. Garza, deputy assistant attorney general for the U.S. Justice Department, today characterized the proposed settlement as "a full success" for the department. "We were able to achieve full relief with respect to the practices we were concerned about," she said. Meanwhile, Richard F. Gaylord, president for the National Association of Realtors, said in a statement, "This is clearly a win-win for the real estate industry and the consumers we serve," and the association characterized the outcome as "favorable." At the center of the lawsuit were NAR-adopted policies governing the online sharing and display of property listings, including Virtual Office Web site (VOW) and Internet Listings Display (ILD) ...