LIEB BLOG

How current events impact your business and real estate holdings

Showing posts with label department of state. Show all posts
Showing posts with label department of state. Show all posts

Friday, February 07, 2020

Recent Legal Matters CE Course & DOS Guidance on Paying Landlord's Agents

Last night, 2/6/2020, we were thrilled to have a packed house attending our new CE - Recent Legal Matters.

Image may contain: 10 people, people sitting and indoor

While not specifically a course topic, the DOS Guidance's Additional FAQs (updated: 1/31/2020) was brought up by students. Specifically, students inquired about FAQ #5:
5. CAN A LANDLORD’S AGENT COLLECT A “BROKER FEE” FROM THE PROSPECTIVE TENANT? No, a landlord’s agent cannot be compensated by the prospective tenant for bringing about the meeting of the minds. NY RPL § 238-a(1)(a) provides, in part, “no landlord, lessor, sub-lessor or grantor may demand any payment, fee, or charge for the processing, review or acceptance of an application, or demand any other payment, fee or charge before or at the beginning of the tenancy, except background checks and credit checks….” The fee to bring about the meeting of the minds would be a “payment, fee or charge before or at the beginning of the tenancy” other than a background or credit check as provided in this section. Accordingly, a landlord’s agent that collects a fee for bringing about the meeting of the minds between the landlord and tenant (i.e., the broker fee) from the tenant can be subject to discipline. 
What good timing for this to come up because our course materials included an explanation of the requirements for an agency (DOS) to issue a regulation, which were not undertaken with respect to this Guidance. As such, the Guidance is NOT law, but, instead an agency's interpretation of law. With respect to the Guidance constituting an interpretation rather than law, we explained how and when an agency's interpretation is given deference by the courts who are the co-equal branch of government with the constitutional authority to be the final voice on interpreting statutes (laws). Incident thereto, we shared the following quotes from case law with our students:
It is well settled that “[a]n agency's interpretation of its own regulation ‘is entitled to deference if that interpretation is not irrational or unreasonable’” &
“the question is one of pure statutory reading and analysis, dependent only on accurate apprehension of legislative intent, there is little basis to rely on any special competence or expertise of the  administrative agency and its interpretive regulations... And, of course, if the regulation runs counter to the clear wording of a statutory provision, it should not be accorded any weight.”
Oh, do we expect a legal battle on this issue. Stay tuned. It's going to get entertaining fast.

Saturday, December 07, 2019

DOS Notice to Licensees in Real Estate Brokerage

Licensees just received this notice on Fair Housing. Remember - discriminating in real estate can result in fines, license revocation, and huge judgment awards in lawsuits.

Lieb School is committed to ending discrimination in housing by educating licensees about behaviors that constitute inadvertent discrimination. Lieb School - Where the Law is Followed.


Dear Licensee:

Please see attached Fair Housing Guidance Document. This email is a reminder notification of your obligation as a Real Estate Licensee to adhere to the laws prohibiting discriminatory practices.

If you have any questions pertaining to this topic, please contact us at eAccessNY@dos.ny.gov.

Division of Licensing Services
NYS Department of State



Monday, April 30, 2018

Renewing An Expired Real Estate License in New York

A licensee (salesperson or broker) can renew their license anytime within two years of the expiration date. Of course they cannot use the license once it is expired, but they do have two years to renew it before any penalties are imposed.

If the license is expired and has not been expired for over two years, they can renew the license online as long as there is a broker of record in place and they have completed the required continuing education. If they were terminated/cancelled by their previous broker, a broker must pick them up using the brokers eAccess account before they can submit an online renewal.   

If the license has been expired for over two years, the record becomes null and void. At this point the licensee must retake and pass the NY licensing examination and can then reapply for a license. No continuing education is required to reapply as they are starting over. No qualifying education is required as long as they have a record in the Department of State system or can prove that they were previously issued a license.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Real Estate Brokerage Regulatory Updates - 4/12/17 NYS Board of Real Estate meeting summary

On 4/12/17 the NYS Board of Real Estate continued its mission of optimizing the regulation of real estate brokers in our state by holding its meeting in NYC and Albany. To remind real estate brokers and salespersons, the public is welcome at these meetings where the public can bring comments from the floor. It is encouraged that Lieb School students attend these meetings to have your voices heard. 

"[T]he Board has general authority to promulgate rules and regulations affecting real estate brokers and salespersons in order to administer and effectuate the purposes of Article 12-A of the Real Property Law."

A complete video of the meeting is available on youtube.

While there was no quorum, the following was discussed:
  1. An education audit program was conducted from December through March on licensees seeking license renewal where approximately 360 such audits were conducted resulting in a finding of approximately 80% compliance and approximately $27,000 in fines;
  2. Many schools are offering classes at 1 and 2 hours in response to the change in regulations;
  3. The possibility of changing the Preliminary Statement of Complaint so real estate brokerage firms can make complaints about their salespersons and associate brokers with the Department of State;
  4. That the Department of State received a question about clarifying whether property managers must comply with the Corporate Title Opinion Letter from April 26, 2013 and will address such question accordingly; and
  5. A public comment that NYS Department of State should coordinate with the Attorney General's Office to enforce unlicensed activities, particularly against auctioneers. 

The next meeting is scheduled for September 13, 2017. 

Monday, April 17, 2017

NY Department of State Update for License Renewal (Applications and Fees)

This is a direct note from the New York, Department of State.

This notification is to inform you of an increase in Real Estate original and renewal application fees, effective immediately.

The new application fees are as follows: Real Estate Broker Application $155, Real Estate Branch Office Application $155, Real Estate Salesperson Application $55.   

Please stop using the old applications immediately.  The new applications are available on the Department of State website, here are the links:





http://www.dos.ny.gov/forms/licensing/0022-a-HT.pdf  (Sales Application Haitian Creole)





Also, as a result of an ongoing Real Estate Licensee Qualifying Audit, we are finding that many licensees are noncompliant. The majority of noncompliant licensees state they did not know, and were not told, that prior to applying for a license education, requirements include completion of the 75 hour course, passing the final school exam and receiving a certificate of completion.