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Can the C.A.R. ombudsman help with a Realtor commission dispute?

Nov 16th, 2015 | By | Category: Real Estate Litigation

Attorney Steve’s Commission College – Tips to resolve a commission dispute in California

C.A.R. mediation lawyerIntroduction

Being involved in a commission dispute is never fun.  Knowing the proper buttons to push, and the options to seek a recovery is of the utmost importance.  This blog talks about one measure, contacting the C.A.R. ombudsman. Other measures may include filing for arbitration or mediation, or filing  BRE or ethics complaint.  In some cases, litigation against the proper parties may be required.

C.A.R. ombudsman hotline

According to the California Association of Realtor’s website they might be able to help resolve a problem before it turns into arbitration, or litigation by using a C.A.R. Ombudsman:

“Occasionally, C.A.R. members find themselves embroiled in a dispute with another member.  Grievances between REALTORS® can include claims of possible ethics violations and communication issues, such as misrepresentation, lying or failure to communicate at all, as well as complaints surrounding cancellation of a contract, listing, or escrow.  The C.A.R. Ombudsman Hotline is here to help.  C.A.R. Ombudsmen receive and respond to questions and complaints about members; can contact members to inform them that another REALTOR® has raised a question or issue; and can contact members to obtain information necessary to provide an informed response to the person complaining.  The Ombudsman’s role is primarily one of communication and conciliation, not adjudication. Ombudsmen do not determine whether ethics violations have occurred, rather they anticipate, identify, and resolve misunderstandings and disagreements before matters ripen into more significant disputes.”

This is good to know and in some cases it would make sense to contact C.A.R. and see if they can ferret out some information for you, or perhaps help “grease the wheels” of settlement.

Top 5 things to consider regarding handling a real estate commission dispute

Here are some of my top tips when you are faced with fighting for your real estate commission:

  1.  Talk to a lawyer before you go firing off emails, letters and leaving phone messages.  The things you say will be “locked in” and you may find it difficult to back-track and you could possibly shoot yourself in the foot by saying something you should not be saying or putting in writing.
  2. Collect all the documents relevant to the case.  You are going to need these for your attorney to review.
  3. Consider using the C.A.R. ombudsman as mentioned above (again, keep in mind you might want to speak with a lawyer before you make statements and representations to C.A.R.
  4. You may need to file for mediation / arbitration (depending upon what the parties agreed to in the contracts).
  5. You may also need to file a Ethics Complaint with the local board, and/or a complaint alleging “dishonest dealing” with the California Bureau of Real Estate (“CALBre”).

Contact a Real Estate Arbitration & Litigation Law Firm

We can help brokers, salespersons, agents and brokerages resolve commission and ethics disputes in California and Arizona.  We can help with “procuring cause” disputes, breach of contract, specific performance, interference with prospective business advantage, wrongfully inducing breach of contract, broker complaints, accusations, investigations, subpoena response, lis pendens, mediation and litigation.  We offer low flat rate fees for many cases, or a combination of hourly and contingency fees.  Contact us at (877) 276-5084 or fill out the contact form below to have one of our real estate lawyers contact you, normally within the hour.



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