Legal/Advocacy

NAR Applauds Introduction of Net Neutrality Bill

July 2018

WASHINGTON—The National Association of Realtors has commended US Rep. Mike Coffman for his introduction of the 21st Century Internet Act. Rep. Coffman’s bill comes in response to the Federal Communications Commission’s 2017 decision to dismantle net neutrality regulations, with the legislation ensuring that Internet Service Providers, or ISPs, cannot block or throttle online content or…

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LEGAL CORNER: The Path to a Successful Real Estate Transaction

July 2018

The Women’s Council of Realtors Empire Local Westchester hosted a panel discussion on July 9th entitled “Deal Breakers.” It was a privilege to be part of the panel and to listen to the panelists’ invaluable insight into the many issues which need to be carefully understood in connection with a real estate transaction. This article…

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BARRISTER'S BRIEFING: A Refresher on Illegal Rentals

June 2018

While the vast majority of landlords are law-abiding, some continue to flout the law when it comes to renting out apartments that are not legally suitable for occupancy. These illegal apartments are typically, but not always, found in single- or dual-family homes. Undocumented immigrants are frequently preyed upon by this practice. This article is about…

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New York Becomes First State to Join Fair Housing Lawsuit Against HUD

May 2018

ALBANY—New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Monday that New York will be joining a lawsuit against the federal government’s alleged failure to enforce the Fair Housing Act. The lawsuit seeks to force the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to enforce a rule requiring local and state governments to address segregated housing patterns…

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BARRISTER'S BRIEFING: A Refresher on State Regulations Governing Teams

May 2018

The New York Department of State Regulation Section 175.25 (a)(2) defines a real estate team in this way: “ 'Team’ means two or more persons, one of whom must be an associate real estate broker or real estate salesperson, associated with the same real estate brokerage who holds themselves out or operate as a team.”…

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Websites, Social Media and the DOS Enforcing Advertising Regulations

May 2018

Posting on social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, has become commonplace for real estate professionals. Every day agents post new listings, photos, open houses and much more on their social media sites, and may not even realize they are engaging in advertising. It is important to be aware that any advertisement, in…

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LEGAL CORNER: Update on Privacy Issues, the Fair Housing Act and Facebook Lawsuit

April 2018

On March 27, 2018, the National Fair Housing Alliance, the Fair Housing Justice Center Inc., Housing Opportunities Project for Excellence, Inc. and the Fair Housing Council of Greater San Antonio filed a lawsuit against Facebook, Inc. in the United States District Court, Southern District of New York (see https://bit.ly/2HprYkb), alleging that Facebook’s advertising platform violates…

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BARRISTER'S BRIEFING: New Regulation Impacts Title Insurance Sector’s Marketing Tools

April 2018

Insurance Regulation 208, which can be found at 11 NYCRR 228, was made effective on Dec. 18, 2017. This regulation, passed by the New York Department of Financial Services was finalized pursuant to certain consumer complaints regarding the title insurance industry. Since the regulation became effective, customary marketing and business prospecting tools that many title…

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LEGAL CORNER: Broker Commission Disputes: You Win Some, You Lose Some

March 2018

Recent decisions from the New York State Appellate Division serve as reminders to brokers, associate brokers and licensed salespersons of the importance of entering into written agreements and the strict fulfillment of fiduciary duties, such as dual agency disclosure, in order to preserve rights to commissions. The failure to do so will likely place commissions…

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HGAR to Lobby State Lawmakers On Key Consumer, Industry Bills

March 2018

ALBANY—A contingent of more than 40 members of the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors are expected to travel to the state capital later this month to meet with state lawmakers and advocate for consumer and real estate industry reform legislation. The contingent will be led by Leah Caro and John Olivero, co-chairs of the HGAR…

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LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Tax Reform Victories for Commercial Realtors

March 2018

Commercial brokers fared well in the recently passed “tax reform bill”. Specifically, 1031 like kind exchanges were kept intact and middle-income housing tax credits were kept that encourages developers to build affordable housing in expensive housing markets. Still on the drawing board is the ADA Education and Reform Act (2018). The original Americans with Disabilities…

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BARRISTER'S BRIEFINGS: ‘Buyer Love Letters’

February 2018

It’s February and love is in the air. For buyers interested in the right home, it may mean that they put quill to paper and craft the perfect “love letter.” Typically, these letters are addressed to the seller, and sometimes the listing agent is also included. Realtors, and all real estate licensees, must be particularly…

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