BrokerageIndustry News

DOJ, NAR settlement moving forward

Agreement reached on minor modifications

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The Department of Justice and the National Association of Realtors have agreed to minor modifications to their proposed settlement of the government's antitrust lawsuit against the Realtors' association, paving the way for a final judgment in the three-year-old case. The government says the settlement, announced in May, will give consumers access to multiple listing service data on homes for sale similar to that enjoyed by Realtors. After wrapping up its review of public comments submitted during a 60-day window, the DOJ proposed leaving the settlement virtually unchanged. But in its response to comments received from the industry, the DOJ shed some light on how it expects the agreement to be enforced: by NAR. The government also left the door open for future antitrust action concerning NAR's Internet Data Exchange, or IDX, policy. In its September 2005 lawsuit, the DOJ alleged that NAR's policy on "virtual office Web sites," or VOWs, violated antitrust laws. T...