Not every real estate agent who has a license in Arizona is a realtor. Only licensed real estate agents who are members of the Arizona Association of Realtors (AAR) can call themselves a realtor. Chelle Law’s Arizona Association of Realtors Attorney can assist realtors with AAR issues. Although, membership in AAR provides professional opportunities for real estate agents and brokers; it also places the realtor under the jurisdiction of the AAR Ethics Enforcement Program. The AAR Ethics Enforcement Program ensures that realtors are abiding by the National Association of ealtors Code of Ethics (COE”). Thus, any realtor is subject to discipline by the AAR for ethical violations of the COE.
The Arizona Department of Real Estate licenses and regulates real estate agents, but only the AAR can enforce ethical violations of the COE. The AAR cannot enforce or discipline a realtor for violations of Arizona statutes or rules.
AAR Ethics Enforcement
The AAR investigates any alleged violation of the COE by a realtor and enforce discipline if necessary. Once there is a complaint against a realtor, the Arizona Realtors Grievance Committee (ARGC) will review the allegations. They then determine if the allegations (if found true) violate the COE. If the ARGC determines the realtors actions are not a violation of the COE they will dismiss the complaint. Should the ARGC determine there has been a violation of the COE by the realtor the individual can either accept a citation or elect to proceed to hearing. If the ARGC feels there must be a further analysis of the complaint it is sent to a hearing in front of the Professionals Standards Committee.
Individuals (or businesses) who file a grievance about a realtor must do so within 180 days from the date the person (or business) knew of the alleged violation of the COE. The Complaint must contain a description of the alleged events and the specific violations of the COE by the realtor.
Arizona Association of Realtors Hearing
If the ARGC forwards a case to hearing or if the realtor elects to go to hearing the process is the same. The hearing is held in front of the Professional Standards Committee (PSC) of the AAR. Consider the hearing like a mini-trial. The PSC members are the jurors and each side (the complaint and the realtor) can bring an attorney, present evidence, witnesses and address the members. The person that filed the complaint has the burden to prove that a violation of the COE has occurred. After the hearing the PSC sends a written decision via mail to both parties. If the realtor feels the decision was made in error they have limited appeal rights.
If the AAR determines a realtor is in violation of the COE the individual may need to complete continuing education in areas they’ve proven deficient in. For instance, they made need to take classes in ethical duties or other responsibilities of real estate professionals. The realtor can also face censorship, receive a monetary penalty or have their membership in the AAR suspended or revoked. The AAR cannot order restitution to the person that filed the complaint.
If you have questions about our Arizona Association of Realtors Attorney and would like to learn more about the services we offer contact Chelle Law today.