As key milestones approach, the DOJ’s upcoming opinion on the commission lawsuit settlement is already drawing both attention and criticism.

At Inman Connect Las Vegas, July 30-Aug. 1, 2024, the noise and misinformation will be banished, all your big questions will be answered, and new business opportunities will be revealed. Join us.

Each week on The Download, Inman’s Christy Murdock takes a deeper look at the top-read stories of the week to give you what you’ll need to meet Monday head-on. This week: As key milestones approach, the DOJ’s upcoming opinion on the commission lawsuit settlement is already drawing both attention and criticism.

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water and that the commission lawsuit settlements were pretty much a done deal, the DOJ’s ongoing interest in the issue has sparked new concerns and additional angst for real estate professionals, proptech providers and MLSs.

In comments made by DOJ attorney Jessica Leal during a May 21 status hearing in the Nosalek commission case, Leal indicated the regulator would neither support nor oppose the NAR settlement agreement, which will lead to the implementation of sweeping rule changes this summer.

Leal added that the DOJ didn’t want to see offers of compensation being made “anywhere,” according to RISMedia. Leal said, “We believe offers of compensation should not be made anywhere, but certainly not on the MLS.”

As you continue to stay up to speed on the latest, here are a few upcoming dates to mark on your calendar:

  • June 18: Opt-in deadline for NAR settlement
  • June 20-21: DOJ expected to update its position on the NAR settlement and two other real estate issues
  • Aug. 17: MLS and buyer’s agent agreement rules to go into effect

Meanwhile, for those hoping that MLSs, tech companies, and individual brokers and agents would be able to develop workarounds, including posting commission information on websites or posting “seller contribution” info instead of commissions, there’s concern that the DOJ could view any information that’s shared anywhere verboten.

Proposed DOJ ban on commission offers against the law, MLS says by Andrea V. Brambila

In a June 10 response to the DOJ’s statement of interest, MLS Property Information Network (MLS PIN) urged Judge Patti B. Saris of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts to reject the DOJ’s arguments against the settlement and approve the deal, saying that the federal agency’s proposed “total ban” on commission offers from sellers to buyer brokers — both on and off the MLS — itself violates antitrust law and the First Amendment’s free speech provision.

“MLS PIN cannot enter into an agreement to ban the publication of free-market compensation offers without offending the very antitrust principles DOJ claims to be protecting. To impose such a ban through a federal injunction would also suppress speech that is protected under the First Amendment.”

Moreover, MLS PIN contends that “an evaluation of the proposed class settlement does not require a mini-trial on fiercely disputed antitrust issues,” but rather whether the deal is “fair and reasonable to the class members.”

Let’s be real: The back and forth we’re seeing in the courts could go on for years with appeals and arguments on both sides. In the meantime, you’ve got clients to serve and a business to run. As always, our goal is to make sure you have the tools you need and expert insight from some of the best minds in the business to help you make sense of the slow-grinding gears of government and the judiciary.

MLSs remain valuable tools after the NAR settlement

Realtracs CEO Stuart White writes that MLSs have an enhanced role as a reliable resource to support professionals as they follow the development of new processes and procedures.

Tom Ferry: ‘The NAR settlement is a once in a lifetime opportunity!’

Jimmy Burgess and Tom Ferry talk industry changes and offer a selection of scripts that are really working right now.

Who trains the trainer? 5 signs your coach isn’t above board

There’s a lot of new information out there — and a lot of bad info, too. Christy Murdock offers five red flags to watch out for when choosing a coach or trainer.

What’s your plan (if you have one) for communicating compensation? Pulse

With widely divergent views around the posting of cooperative compensation, what’s your plan for talking about commissions? Sound off on this week’s Pulse poll.

Christy Murdock is a writer, coach and consultant and the owner of Writing Real Estate. Connect with Writing Real Estate on Instagram and subscribe to the weekly roundup, The Ketchup.

Show Comments Hide Comments
Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Only 3 days left to register for Inman Connect Las Vegas before prices go up! Don't miss the premier event for real estate pros.Register Now ×
Limited Time Offer: Get 1 year of Inman Select for $199SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription