PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS & ETHICS COMPLAINTS
REALTORS® are different from non-member licensees in that they subscribe to a strict Code of Ethics. If you believe that a REALTOR® has violated one or more Articles of the Code of Ethics, you can file an ethics complaint alleging a violation(s) through the local association of REALTORS® where the REALTOR® holds membership, or participates in a REALTOR® association-owned/operated MLS.
CLICK HERE to download the official Ethics Complaint Form
CLICK HERE to view the NAR Code of Ethics
Please print the form and read it carefully. Then make sure to fill it out as completely as possible.
You must name the respondent (the person against whom you are filing the complaint). Also, after carefully reviewing the Code of Ethics, please cite the article(s) you feel have been violated. You will then attach a true and accurate written statement — in your own words — explaining how you feel the violation occurred. Attach any and all supporting documents, i.e., listing contracts, purchase contracts, etc., that will support your claim. Please do not send originals of these documents. Clear, readable photocopies are sufficient.
Please indicate whether civil or criminal action has been filed in this matter, and then sign and date the form and fill in your address. Mail the form and accompanying paperwork to the Utah Association of REALTORS® at 230 West Towne Ridge Parkway, Suite 500, Sandy, Utah, 84070, attention Professional Standards Enforcement. If you have questions, please call our Professional Standards staff at (801) 676-5200 or (800) 594-8933.
Many difficulties between real estate professionals (whether REALTORS® or not) result from misunderstanding, mis-communication or lack of adequate communication. If you have a problem with a real estate professional, you may want to speak with that person or with a principal broker in the firm. Open, constructive discussion often resolves questions or differences, eliminating the need for further action.
If, after discussing matters with your real estate professional or a principal broker in that firm, you are still not satisfied, you may want to contact the local board or association of REALTORS®. Many boards and associations have informal dispute resolving processes available to consumers (e.g., ombudsmen, mediation, etc.). If, after taking these steps, you still feel you have a grievance, you many want to consider filing an ethics complaint. You will want to keep the following in mind:
- Only REALTORS® and REALTOR-ASSOCIATES® are subject to the Code of Ethics of the National Association of REALTORS®.
- If the real estate professional (or their broker) you are dealing with is not a REALTOR®, your only recourse may be the state real state licensing authority or the courts.
- Boards and associations of REALTORS® determine whether the Code of Ethics has been violated, not whether the law or real estate regulations have been broken. Those decisions can only be made by the licensing authorities or the courts.
- Boards of REALTORS® can discipline REALTORS® for violating the Code of Ethics. Typical forms of discipline include attendance at courses and seminars designed to increase REALTORS®’ understanding of the ethical duties or other responsibilities of real estate professionals. REALTORS® may also be reprimanded, fined, or their membership can be suspended or terminated for serious or repeated violations. Boards and associations of REALTORS® cannot require REALTORS® to pay money to parties filing ethics complaints; cannot award “punitive damages” for violations of the Code of Ethics; and cannot suspend or revoke a real estate professional’s license.
- The primary emphasis of discipline for ethical lapses is educational, to create a heightened awareness of and appreciation for the duties the Code imposes. At the same time, more severe forms of discipline, including fines and suspension and termination of membership may be imposed for serious or repeated violations.