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Update Course Highlights RESPA, Common Complaints and Claims

By Patricia A. Moylan, Education Officer

Commission staff is in the process of writing the mandatory continuing education Update course for 2003-2004. All licensees must take the Update course each year in order to renew their licenses on active status, unless they are exempt from the continuing education requirement because their licenses were just issued during that license year.
The two primary subjects on which the 2003-2004 Real Estate Update course will focus are: 1) RESPA (Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act) and 2) common complaints or claims against licensees by consumers or other licensees. Three-quarters of the course will be devoted to exploring these two topics. A related topic, namely, the value of maintaining errors and omissions insurance coverage, also will be discussed.
The RESPA section will address transactions to which RESPA applies, mandatory disclosures, provision of settlement statements (i.e. HUD-1s), prohibited kickbacks, unearned fees and affiliated business arrangements, enforcement provisions, and impending or anticipated revisions to the existing law or rules.

The topic covering complaints and claims will be drawn both from past Commission disciplinary cases as well as claims most frequently encountered by insurance carriers. They include issues of misrepresentation/omissions, drafting language to include in preprinted documents, mishandling of trust account monies, disputed earnest money deposits, conflicts of interest, false or misleading advertising, and discrimination against protected classes, among other issues.
Lastly, as always, a brief segment of the Update course will be devoted to a review of the Real Estate License Law and Commission Rules which either have been revised within the last year or which will change during the 2003-2004 license year, as well as certain administrative issues about which there appears to be ongoing confusion or ignorance. It is recommended that licensees who truly wish to be “on the cutting edge” and have the most current information take the Update course in the Fall of each year, rather than waiting until the Spring rush, when most of the statute and rule changes will already have been in effect for several months.

This article came from the May 2003-Vol34-1 edition of the bulletin.