Georgia Real Estate Commission News – March 2014
The March 2014 edition of the Georgia Real Estate Commission newsletter contains an article of particular interest to business brokers. The article covers key issues on licensing and commission-sharing with “consultants,” according to GABB past-president Kathryne Pusch, who is the Business Brokerage Industry Representative on the Education Advisory Committee to the GREC.
The article describes laws that require that persons performing real estate activities for another party for a fee, and who are not doing so as a full time employee of that owner, company, or individual, must obtain and maintain a real estate license in Georgia.
Many real estate professionals refer to their services as consulting, but the real estate consultant must be licensed by the Georgia Real Estate Commission. There are exceptions to this rule, but they do not apply to individuals holding an active or an inactive real estate license. The exceptions to licensure are detailed in License Law 43-40-29.
A consultant, business broker, or individual who provides services in anticipation of being paid in the sale of a business which includes the transfer of the lease on the property must be licensed as a real estate licensee.
A real estate licensee cannot legally share a commission in a transaction with an unlicensed person who is illegally practicing brokerage activities.
The Commission has authority to stop those practicing real estate without a license, including individuals practicing with an inactive license or a license that is not in good standing. The Commission issues a Cease and Desist Order to the individual practicing real estate without a license requiring him/her to Cease and Desist from any further activities that require a license issued by the Commission.
The Commission is authorized to impose a fine up to $1,000.00 for each transaction constituting a violation, and each day the party continues to act in violation is considered another violation resulting in an additional $1,000 per day. Clearly, the fines can be extensive.
To read the complete newsletter, please click this link.