Harras Bloom & Archer LLP Blog

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Real Estate Brokerage Dispute Solutions

Real estate brokers’ roles in property purchase and sale transactions are most often clearly defined. Yet disputes can arise that call into question the competency and fair dealing of both real estate brokers and the parties with whom they work. Contract disputes can also arise regarding the interpretation of key clauses. For example:

  • A broker may have difficulty collecting on a brokerage agreement
  • A client can allege that a broker made an error and sue the broker
  • Brokers and clients can disagree regarding whether a commission should be paid
  • Disputes can arise between a brokerage firm and an agent
  • Issues can arise regarding an agent's license, breach of fiduciary duty, earnest money and deposits and broker negligence

The Nassau and Suffolk County real estate attorneys of Harras Bloom & Archer LLP have decades of experience resolving a range of real estate-related disputes, including disputes involving brokerages, brokers and agents. We also provide legal counsel regarding the avoidance of disputes. Our services include but are not limited to the following:

  • Legal counsel to brokers and agents on how to anticipate potential problems and to avoid liability in order to avoid expensive and time-consuming disputes. Our counsel generally includes the negotiation, preparation and drafting of real estate brokerage contracts, including listing agreements. 
  • The resolution of disputes between brokerages and other parties. We are highly experienced real estate litigators who can assist at any point of a real estate dispute.

A common issue that leads to brokerage disputes is disagreements in the interpretation of real estate brokerage contracts. These contracts outline the rights and duties of both the broker and the buyer or seller whom he or she represents. The contract should describe when the broker is entitled to a commission and for what amount/in which percentage. However, disagreements can arise regarding:

  • Whether a fee will be paid only if there is a closing of a sale
  • The specifics of the broker's duties, such as showing the property, creating marketing materials and promoting the property
  • The owner's obligation to provide the financial information necessary to close a deal
  • Tail provisions covering the rights of all parties following the signing of a contract, including the broker's right to a commission regarding leads he or she has generated
  • The broker’s right to a commission if the owner took action that prevented a sale

We represent all parties facing legal challenges involving brokers and brokerages. As skilled real estate transaction and litigation attorneys, we can quickly and efficiently investigate the facts of the dispute that will likely have a bearing on the outcome. We have argued for real estate clients’ rights before judges, juries, arbiters and mediators in hundreds of cases, and our team’s skills and experience range from decades of client advocacy in the courtroom to service as a New York State Supreme Court referee in numerous real estate dispute matters. We can provide effective, results-driven representation both to keep you out of the courtroom and to get you out of the courtroom with your interests protected.

The  experienced real estate litigation attorneys at Harras Bloom & Archer LLP provide counsel and assistance to all stakeholders in transaction and contract disputes. For more information regarding the firm's real estate brokerage legal services, contact our Long Island office at 631-498-5505.




Harras Bloom & Archer LLP is known for providing sophisticated legal representation to sophisticated clients serving Nassau County, Suffolk County, Queens County, New York City and surrounding areas.



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