Professional Standards

REALTORS® voluntarily agree to abide by the REALTOR® Code of Ethics. If a real estate agent has joined the REALTOR® association, they pledge to meet the Code of Ethics’ high standards of professional conduct. View the National Association of REALTORS® Code of Ethics.

Enforcement of the REALTOR® Code of Ethics is the responsibility of local REALTOR® associations. Associations provide dispute resolution service and professional standards enforcement services including but not limited to mediation services, ethics hearings and arbitration hearings. These topics and process for filing a complaint are discussed in more detail below.

Mediation

Mediation is a process where parties, with the assistance of a neutral mediator, attempt to resolve their dispute by mutual agreement. REALTOR® mediation is a free alternative dispute resolution technique used as an alternative to litigation or formal ethics or arbitration hearings. Mediation services may be requested at the local REALTOR® association where the REALTOR® holds membership. The process to file a complaint

How to Request Mediation

Mediation is a viable alternative to litigation or formal arbitration. To initiate the process, please download “Mediation Rules and Guidelines” and “Request to Mediate Form“.

Ethics

If you believe a REALTOR® has violated one or more articles of the Code of Ethics, a complaint alleging a violation of the Code of Ethics may be filed with the local REALTOR® association where the REALTOR® holds membership, or participates in a REALTOR® association owned or operated MLS.

How to File an Ethics Complaint

Complete Form E1 (Ethics Complaint) – making sure that you sign and date the form.

Give the name of the respondent.

Indicate which of the 17 Articles you feel was violated.

Attach a written summary of the situation and any documentation (such as listing agreements, purchase agreements, buyer contracts or disclosure forms) which support your complaint.

Complaints must be filed within 180 days of the time that the alleged offense and facts relating to it could have been known by the complainant in the exercise of reasonable diligence or within 180 days after the conclusion of the transaction or event, whichever is later.

Include 1 copy of the complaint form and all attachments, and mail complaint to:

Minnesota Association of REALTORS®
Ethics Complaint
5750 Lincoln Dr
Edina, MN 55436

Prior to filing an ethics complaint, you may find more information about the process in the National Association of REALTORS® publication “Before You File an Ethics Complaint”.

Arbitration

Optional Agreement
The Residential Real Property Arbitration program is a voluntary, optional means of dispute resolution on issues relating to disclosure of material facts pertaining to the property. The system, which serves as an alternative to litigation, is endorsed by the Minnesota Association of REALTORS® and administered by National Center for Dispute Settlement (NCDS). This option should be presented to the parties at or about the time that a listing agreement, a buyer representation agreement or the purchase agreement is signed. The agreement to arbitrate these disputes is enforceable only if all buyers, sellers and licensees representing or assisting the buyers and sellers consent by signing the Arbitration Agreement form. (This is because any of those parties or broker/agents could be named as parties in arbitration.) By agreeing to arbitrate such disputes, the parties give up the right to resolve those issues in court. The Arbitration Disclosure and Agreement is a separate form, not an addendum to the purchase agreement, and failure to sign that form has no effect on the purchase agreement.

How to File a Demand for Arbitration

To file a demand for Arbitration, contact NCDS to request a Demand for Arbitration or Submission Form as well as Rules the Residential Real Property Arbitration and the fee schedule at (866) 777-8119 or (866) 727-8119 or you can download this information from the NCDS website.

Additional Resources

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