Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dual Agent with Designated Sales Agent - Who is the Dual Agent?

The benefits of being a teaching law firm is that we get to learn from students in their respective industries what issues they are actually having in practice before we litigate disputes.

The question I got today was this: Who is the third person in a real estate deal with a dual agent with designated sales agent? Do we have to split our commission with this third person? I just don't get it. Must we pick another person in the office to serve as this third person.

Lets be clear - the third person is technically the broker of record at your office, but no there is not another agent involved in the transaction nor do you have to further split your commission. Instead, the theory of a dual agent with designated sales agent is this:
  • Both agents (listing & buyers) work for the same company
  • At the company (brokerage house) there is a boss (broker of record)
  • Both agents (listing & buyers) have to report to the boss if the boss so requires
  • While reporting to the boss confidences of the seller or buyer may be required to be shared
  • The seller and buyer should know this limitation on their confidences before retaining the agents and either consent to it or not permit a dual agent with designated sales agent representation
If you have any more questions on this topic I suggest attending our next Conflicts of Interest class where this topic is discussed in more detail.

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