Legal Analysts

Friday, January 25, 2013

Updated Q & A: NY Real Estate Continuing Education & License Requirements

Does Lieb School report my completed credits to the Department of State (DOS)? Am I responsible for sending my course certificates to the DOS?  Credits received from Lieb School count towards the 22.5 required from the DOS for license renewal. Certificates provided at each class serve as proof of credit hours (think of them as a receipt). After each class, Lieb School submits to the Department of State, Bureau of Educational Standards, all licensee information for successful completion of each course.  Upon license renewal, the DOS will require the original signed certificates if you are selected for an audit. Make sure that you keep your certificates in a safe place. In the event of an audit, the DOS will cross reference the certificates with the student completion records received by each school.   You are responsible for completing all 22.5 credits by your license renewal deadline date. 

How do I renew my New York State Real Estate License? License renewals must be completed online through the Department of State eACCESSny website.   Please note that the renewal process requires licensees to validate education completion by answering “Yes” to the Continuing Education question that confirms all CE requirements have been satisfied.  If you mistakenly answer “No”, the DOS will not renew your license until they see all original course completion certificates.  You also have to hold onto the original course completion certificates in the event of a license audit by the DOS.  

If I did not complete my continuing education requirements before my license expiration date can I get an extension?  Please refer to §177.6 in the Real Estate License Law. The Department of State will only grant extensions in bona fide hardship cases.  Prior to your license expiration: you must submit to the Department of State, a written request for the extension, completed renewal form, fee, and original documentation demonstrating your hardship; i.e., medical documentation.   

more questions answered...

Who regulates my New York State Real Estate License?  Your license is regulated by the Department of State, New York (DOS) and NOT by any real estate school or trade organization.

What are the Continuing Education requirements for real estate agents in NY? Every 2 years, licensed real estate brokers and salespersons in the State of New York are required to take 22.5 continuing education credits. The ONLY mandatory class requirement is at least 3 hours of instruction pertaining to fair housing and/or discrimination in the sale or rental of real property or an interest of real property, within the 2 - year period immediately preceding a renewal.

Are there any exemptions for Continuing Education requirements for real estate agents in New York? 
Licensed real estate brokers who are engaged full time in the real estate business and who have been licensed for at least 15 consecutive years immediately preceding license renewal. This exemption must have been met prior to July 1, 2008.  An attorney admitted to the New York State bar is also exempt from the Continuing Education Requirement.

Am I required to take a course in Fair Housing if my real estate license is grandfathered? A NYS real estate agent does not need to take a course in Fair Housing if they are generally exempt by way of the "grandfather" factor.  Please refer the agent to Real Property Law section 441(3)(a) where it expresses the requirement for real estate agents to take 3 hours in a fair housing and/or discrimination course within a license renewal cycle. The link for the license law where this is discussed is as follows:

While reviewing the license law, please refer your attention to the last sentence of this requirement wherein it states: "The provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to any licensed real estate broker who is engaged full time in the real estate business and who has been licensed under this article prior to July 1, 2008 for at least 15 consecutive years immediately proceeding such renewal". This is the "grandfather" factor. 

In general, the only exception to the "grandfather" factor exemption is for NAR's mandatory quadrennial ethics requirement for members of the National Association of REALTORS®. This has nothing to do with licensing or the Department of State, New York. 

If I already completed a continuing education class, can I take the same topic again for credit with a different school in NY within the same license renewal cycle? Real estate continuing education courses are assigned independent approval codes by the Bureau of Educational Standards, Department of State, State of New York.  Licensed real estate agents may take multiple courses in the same topic within each "two year cycle of renewal" as long as each course has an independent approval code. Approval codes are assigned for each approved course, not school and not course topic.  It is advised that you always check your records of previously completed approval codes prior to registration for new courses within your cycle of renewal. 

If I already received credit for taking a continuing education course, can I get credit for taking the same exact course in a different license renewal cycle?  Yes. While New York State Real Estate License Law, 19 NYCRR 177.18(c), states: "No continuing education course will be considered for continuing education credit more than once within the two year cycle of renewal", there is no specific regulation precluding taking the same continuing education course anew in a subsequent and different license renewal cycle.

Do I have to take an Ethics course to renew my license?  Ethics training is not a required course for a Real Estate Broker or Salesperson to maintain their license in full force and effect with the Department of State, New York. Ethics courses may be required by your local Board (trade organization), but are not required to maintain your license with the Department of State of New York.