Q4 2015: Year in Review

This edition of the quarterly report analyzes legal trends in risk management areas that effect real estate professionals: Agency, Property Condition Disclosure, RESPA, and Fair Housing.

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In This Issue

A.Cases

In this edition, we revisit two cases from earlier this year resulting in significant damage awards occasioned by the real estate professional’s breach of fiduciary duty. Several other recent breach of fiduciary duty cases retrieved this quarter, including one in which the broker was found liable, are also summarized below. In an interesting case from New York, the...

A. Cases

This quarter we review two cases in which a verdict was entered against the licensee and damages were awarded to the plaintiff. In an update to a case examined earlier this year, the appellate court affirmed that a seller or real estate professional does not need to disclose adverse off-site conditions, such as an unruly neighbor. Furthermore, two state supreme courts...

A. Cases

Several cases from last quarter considered a scheme involving payments to reinsurance entities created by lenders for private mortgage insurance. In another decision, the court made clear that RESPA is only concerned with whether or not a party actually performed services in exchange for fees received; RESPA does not examine the reasonableness of the payment for those...

A. Cases

Several cases from this past quarter involved claims for racial discrimination based on a lender’s denial of a loan modification. In all three of these cases, the court dismissed the claims because the borrowers failed to allege that they qualified for the loan modification. Two other cases reviewed this year both addressed whether a lender’s request for...

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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.