Common Mistakes That Can Jeopardize Your Real Estate License
Jay Stafford | July 30, 2021
Real estate brokers and agents are incredibly busy people, especially when working in a fast-paced market. Unfortunately, being so busy can easily lead to mistakes that can jeopardize your ability to work as a realtor. If you are involved in a dispute with a client or facing disciplinary action, a Maryland real estate license defense attorney can help you navigate the challenges you face.
Our Maryland Employment Lawyer Can Help You Deal With Misrepresentation Allegations
Misrepresentation, or lying, is one of the most common issues raised in complaints involving realtors. While intentional misrepresentations are not really a mistake, many allegations of misrepresentation do not occur because the agent intended to mislead someone. Instead, agents may be accused of misrepresentation in the following situations:
- Exaggerating positive aspects of a property or transaction
- Diminishing potential negative aspects of a property or transaction
- Failing to correct material misunderstandings
- Failing to pay close attention to important details
Whether it is salesmanship or negligence, it isn’t always clear whether a misrepresentation has occurred. Nonetheless, an allegation of misrepresentation can result in the suspension or revocation of your license. A Maryland employment lawyer can evaluate these allegations and formulate a strong defense.
Failure to Disclose
Very closely related to misrepresentation, another common claim against real estate agents is that they failed to disclose a “material fact” related to the property. Under Maryland law, the failure to disclose can be either intentional or negligent. As a result, you can face disciplinary action or legal liability even if the failure to disclose was unintentional.
However, to be actionable, you must have failed to disclose a “material fact.” Determining what may be and may not be a material fact can be a difficult and sometimes subjective analysis. A Maryland real estate license defense attorney will know whether your case involves the failure to disclose a material fact and be able to shape your defense strategy accordingly.
Misappropriation and Mismanagement of Funds
Most realtors would never consider pocketing their clients’ deposits. But, unfortunately, many clients get into trouble as a result of sloppy or negligent bookkeeping. By failing to practice good bookkeeping and money handling, realtors wind up commingling their clients’ funds with their own. This can quickly lead to accusations of misappropriation.
To avoid any such accusations, the best thing you can do is to immediately deposit all client funds into your trust account or the title company’s escrow account. If you have been accused of misappropriating or mismanaging your client’s money, we recommend that you speak with a Maryland employment lawyer as soon as possible.
Another mistake that can jeopardize your license is to assume that criminal charges unrelated to your professional life will have no impact on your real estate license. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Under Maryland law, your license can be suspended or revoked if you are convicted of the following in any state:
- Any felony; or
- Any misdemeanor that is directly related to your fitness as a real estate professional
As a result, you should take immediate action if you are charged with a crime, even if it has nothing to do with your real estate business. If convicted, your license could be in jeopardy.
Contact Maryland Employment Lawyer J.W. Stafford
If you are facing possible reprimand or suspension or revocation of your real estate license, we can help protect your future. To discuss your case and your options, contact our Maryland employment lawyer today by calling 410-514-6099.