Q2 2015: Agency, PCD Cases, RESPA, Code of Ethics Update

This issue of the Legal Pulse analyzes legal trends in risk management areas that effect real estate professionals: Agency, Property Condition Disclosure, RESPA, and a Code of Ethics update.

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In This Issue

A. Cases

The most interesting cases for this update involved buyer representation and dual agency issues. In an Ohio case where the broker seems to have simply ignored the lawsuit, the court made a default judgment of over a million dollars that was affirmed on appeal. The lesson? If you receive court papers, it’s a good idea to respond!

1. D&J Real Estate Servs...

A. Cases

The notable property condition disclosure cases for second quarter involved HVAC, sewer/septic, and boundary disputes, while two of the three also raise issues of fraud and deceptive trade practices.

1. Pringle v. C.B. Richard Ellis, Inc., No. B250304, 2015 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 3463 (May 19, 2015)

Broker did not misrepresent property’

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A. Cases

A series of second-quarter RESPA cases dealt with kickbacks, while a Montana court upheld a large judgment against a lender over disclosure issues. A federal court limited a broker’s ability to make a counter-claim in a RESPA case. Two of the cases discussed here are ongoing matters. 

1. Munoz v. PHH Corp., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 67226 (U.S. District...

Once a year, we let you know about new decisions interpreting NAR’s Code of Ethics. There was just one case of interest during the period covered.

A.  Case

First Weber Group, Inc. v. Synergy Real Estate Group, LLC, 2015 WI 34, 361 Wis. 2d 496,  880 N.W.2d 498 (2015), rev'g 363 Wis. 2d 492, 846 N.W.2d 348 (Ct. App. 2014)

The

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State Law Based Changes

NAR's State Law Based Changes is a compilation of new types of laws collected over the past few years. This resource is helpful to guide states that may want to adopt similar laws in their state.

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Read a summary of this quarter's additions to the State Law Based Changes.