Post-Verdict Guidance from NAR President Tracy Kasper

Post-Verdict Guidance from NAR President Tracy Kasper

Nov 7, 2023
Light Theme Light Dark Theme Dark


As NAR welcomes Interim CEO Nykia Wright, Tracy Kasper discusses the verdict in the Burnett et al v. NAR et al case and provides high-level guidance to help REALTORS® understand and communicate about the verdict.

Guidance Regarding Trial Verdict

What does this mean for me and my business?

  • We all should continue to express that commissions are negotiable and set between a broker and their client.
  • As always, it is critical to maximize transparency with your clients about their choices and your terms.
  • Continue to use your listing and buyer agreements to help them understand 1) exactly what services and value you are providing and 2) how much you charge.
    • For buyers, this includes options for offers of compensation from a listing broker or paying for your services directly or a combination.
    • For sellers, this includes options to allow offers of compensation to be made by their listing broker to a buyer’s broker, and if so, how much and under what terms.

What should I tell my clients who ask me about the verdict or lawsuits?

  • The National Association of REALTORS® believes that the jury reached an outcome that is neither supported by the law nor the facts presented in the case and plans to appeal.
  • The trial had to do with a very pro-consumer rule for local MLS broker marketplaces where listing brokers make offers of compensation to buyer brokers who identify someone who wants to buy the sellers’ home.
  • Those offers can be any amount, can vary over time, are based on things like service and the market, and are negotiable. Neither the buyer nor seller broker gets paid until the home sale and purchase close based on what the seller and buyer have agreed to in writing.
  • The offer of compensation practice ensures efficient, transparent and accessible marketplaces where sellers can sell their home for more and have their home seen by more buyers while buyers have more choices of homes and can afford representation.
  • Plaintiffs have said wealthy people could still afford representation without the practice, but that hardly seems fair. The National Association of REALTORS® is going to continue to advocate for this pro-consumer practice and, as noted, plans to appeal the jury’s verdict.
  • Know that agents who are REALTORS® will still and always be there for clients to guide you through the financial, legal and community complexities of buying and selling a home.
  • The verdict doesn’t change the many choices buyers and sellers have when deciding whether to hire a real estate agent who is a REALTOR®. Compensation will continue to be negotiable and set between a broker and their respective client, as it always has been.

What can I do to help?