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Part 12: Outline of Procedure for an Arbitration Hearing Involving a Request and a Counter-Request

Part 12: Outline of Procedure for an Arbitration Hearing Involving a Request and a Counter-Request

__________________________________________________________________________ Board of REALTORS®

State of ___________________________________________

(To be transmitted in advance to both parties.)

Remote Testimony: Although testimony provided in person before a Hearing Panel is preferred, parties and witnesses to arbitration hearings may be permitted to participate in hearings by teleconference or videoconference at the discretion of the Hearing Panel Chair. (Adopted 11/15)

Postponement of hearing: Postponement may be granted if there are extenuating circumstances. Parties’ requests for continuances shall only be granted when all parties mutually agree to a subsequent specified date, or when the hearing panel chair determines that denying the continuance would deny the requestor a fair hearing. Requests for postponement must be made in writing. Requests are reviewed by the Hearing Panel Chair. If the request is approved by the Chair, all parties shall be advised of the rescheduled hearing date. (Revised 11/14)

Recording of the hearing: The Board shall, and any party (may/may not), at their own expense, have a court reporter present at the hearing, or may record the proceeding and, if transcribed, shall furnish a copy to the Professional Standards Administrator. (Revised 11/14)

Method and objective of procedure: The Hearing Panel shall not be bound by the rules of evidence applicable in courts of law, but shall afford all parties a full opportunity to be heard, present witnesses, and offer evidence, subject to its judgment as to relevance.

Parties are strongly encouraged to provide any and all documents and evidence they intend to introduce during the hearing to the other party(ies) and to the association prior to the day of the hearing. Providing documents and evidence in advance can expedite the hearing process and prevent costly, unnecessary continuances. (Adopted 05/15)

Due process procedure: The hearing will proceed as follows:

(1) Chairperson cites authority to hear case and explains reason for hearing.

(2) The arbitration request and counter-request will be read into the record.

(3) The testimony of all parties and witness(es) will be sworn or affirmed. All witness(es) will be excused from the hearing except while testifying. All parties appearing at a hearing may be called as a witness without advance notice. (Revised 11/14)

(4) Complainant/counter-respondent will present a brief opening statement uninterrupted, stating the amount to be arbitrated and an explanation of the source of the dispute (i.e., commission dispute, request for security deposit refund, etc. . . .) and refuting the contention that any monies are owed.

(5) Respondent/counter-complainant will present a brief opening statement uninterrupted, stating the amount to be arbitrated and an explanation of the source of the dispute (i.e. commission dispute, request for security deposit refund, etc. . . .) and refuting the contention that any monies are owed.

(6) Complainant/counter-respondent presents his case and defense by offering testimony and evidence from himself and/or his witness(es) to support the contention that monies are owed to the complainant by the respondent and refuting the contention that monies are owed to the counter-complainant.

  1. The respondent/counter-complainant may question the complainant/counter-respondent and/or his witness(es) immediately after each has testified.
  2. The Hearing Panel may question the complainant/ counter-respondent and/or his witness(es) immediately after each has testified.

(7) Respondent/counter-complainant presents her case, offering testimony and evidence from herself and/or witness(es) to support the contention that monies are owed to her by the counter-respondent and refuting the contention that she owes monies to the complainant.

  1. The complainant/counter-respondent may question the respondent/counter-complainant and/or her witness(es) immediately after each has testified.
  2. The Hearing Panel may question the respondent/ counter-complainant and/or her witness(es) immediately after each has testified.

(8) The complainant/counter-respondent may present additional testimony and evidence from himself and/or his witness(es) to further support his position as a complainant/counter-respondent.

  1. The respondent/counter-complainant may question the complainant/counter-respondent and/or his witness(es) immediately after each has testified.
  2. The Hearing Panel may question the complainant/ counter-respondent and/or his witness(es) immediately after each has testified.

(9) The respondent/counter-complainant may present additional testimony and evidence from herself and/or her witness(es) to further support her position as respondent/ counter-complainant.

  1. The complainant/counter-respondent may question the respondent/counter-complainant and/or her witness(es) immediately after each has testified.
  2. The Hearing Panel may question the respondent/ counter-complainant and/or her witness(es) immediately after each has testified.

(10) Cross-examination in which the parties are given a final opportunity to examine each other. The complainant/ counter-respondent may first ask any remaining questions of the respondent/counter-complainant and/or the respondent/counter-complainant’s witness(es). The respondent/counter-complainant may then ask any remaining questions of the complainant/counter-respondent and/or of the complainant’s/counter-respondent’s witness(es).

(11) The Hearing Panel may question either the complainant/counter-respondent and/or the respondent/ counter-complainant and/or their respective witness(es).

(12) When the parties and Hearing Panel members have no further questions, the complainant/counter-respondent and respondent/counter-complainant (respectively) may present uninterrupted closing statements.

(13) The Chair will then adjourn the hearing.

(14) The Hearing Panel will go into executive session to decide the case.

Settlement: Parties are encouraged to settle the dispute at any time. At the outset of the hearing, the Hearing Panel Chair should inform the parties that settlement is an option. At any time during the hearing, the parties can ask for a recess in an attempt to reach a settlement agreement. The parties, with the assistance of their respective counsel, if any, will determine the terms of their settlement agreement. The parties should be advised that the arbitration will continue to be processed until formally withdrawn by the complainant. (Revised 11/15)

Award in arbitration hearing: The decision of the Hearing Panel in an arbitration proceeding shall be reduced to writing by the panel (setting forth only the amount of the award) and be signed by the arbitrators or a majority of them, and a copy shall be furnished to each of the parties to the arbitration. A copy also shall be filed with the Professional Standards Administrator of the Board.

Testimony: Any testimony relating to the character or general reputation of either party shall not be permitted unless the Hearing Panel finds that such testimony has a direct bearing on the case. The Chairperson may exclude any question which he or she deems irrelevant or argumentative.

Use of legal counsel: A party may be represented in any hearing by legal counsel. However, parties may not refuse to directly respond to requests for information or questions addressed to them by members of the panel except on grounds of self-incrimination, or on other grounds deemed by the panel to be appropriate. In this connection, the panel need not accept the statements of counsel as being the statements of counsel’s client if the panel desires direct testimony. Parties shall be held responsible for the conduct of their counsel. Any effort by counsel to harass, intimidate, coerce, or confuse the panel members or any party to the proceedings, or any action by counsel which is viewed by the panel as disruptive of the proceedings, shall be grounds for exclusion of counsel. The decision to exclude counsel for any of the foregoing reasons shall be the result of a majority vote of the members of the panel and shall be nonappealable. In the event counsel is excluded, the hearing shall be postponed to a date certain not less than fifteen (15) nor more than thirty (30) days from the date of adjournment to enable the party to obtain alternate counsel, provided, however, that such postponement shall not be authorized if it appears to members of the panel that the action of counsel has been undertaken by counsel to obtain a postponement or delay of the hearing.

Be advised all matters discussed are strictly confidential.