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Berke v. Nan Hecht: Court Declined to Compel Board to Arbitrate Dispute Between Members After Board Declined

January 1, 1989: 

In Berke v. Nan Hecht, The Realty Investment Co., The Realty Investment Company (TRI) appealed from a court order denying its petition to compel the Board to arbitrate a dispute between it and another Board member, Berke. The facts of the case are complex but the key issue on appeal was whether, and to what extent, the Board had the power to decline to arbitrate their dispute. Ultimately, the California Appellate Department of the Superior Court affirmed the trial court's order denying TRI's request to compel arbitration.

Cardinal v. Merrill Lynch Realty/Burnet, Inc.: Minnesota Supreme Court Finds Broker Providing Closing Services Not Engaged in Unauthorized Practice of Law

January 1, 1989: 

In 1989 the Supreme Court of Minnesota addressed whether a real estate broker had engaged in the unauthorized practice of law. The court held that by charging a separate fee for closing services in an ordinary real residential real estate transaction which presented neither difficult nor doubtful questions, the broker did not engage in the unauthorized practice of law.

C.B. Snyder Realty v. BMW: Broker Claims Intentional Interference With Contract

January 1, 1989: 

In C.B. Snyder Realty, Inc. v. BMW, the Superior Court of New Jersey addressed allegations by a broker against a client/lessee for intentional interference with contract. The court held that the lessee did not interfere with the broker’s contract with the lessor as the lessee did not act maliciously or for financial gain when it closed the deal through another broker.

Churchill v. Columbus BOR: Columbus Board of REALTORS® Arbitration Award Upheld

January 1, 1989: 

Note: This case is not published in an official reporter and may not be cited as authority. Consult with counsel before relying on this case.

The Ohio Court of Common Pleas granted the Columbus Board of REALTORS® (the "Board") motion for summary judgment and dismissed plaintiff's complaint seeking reversal of the Board's arbitration award. The court held that absent a showing of fraud or bad faith, the award rendered by the Board in a voluntarily entered arbitration matter would be enforced.

People v. Colorado Springs BOR: Colorado Supreme Court Determines Membership-Based MLS Access Unlawfully Restricts Trade

January 1, 1989: 

In People v. Colorado Springs Board of REALTORS®, the Colorado Supreme Court addressed the reasonableness of Board membership criteria as it related to MLS access. The court held that membership criteria which gave a Board the means to restrict access to the MLS were potentially anti-competitive and constituted an impermissible group boycott under Rule of Reason analysis.

Rock Island Coutny BOR v. Cuchra: Illinois Court of Appeal Upholds Board's Suspension of Member for Violating Code of Ethics

July 13, 1988: 

In 1988 the Appellate Court of Illinois addressed the 90-day suspension of a Board member for Code of Ethics violations. The court held that the defendant had proper notice of the alleged ethics violations and that the Board's Code of Ethics was not vague.

Howerin Residential Sales v. Century Realty of Tidewater: Virginia Supreme Court Establishes Standard of Review of Arbitration Award

January 1, 1988: 

In Howerin Residential Sales Corp. v. Century Realty of Tidewater, Inc., the Supreme Court of Virginia addressed the validity of a REALTOR® board (the "Board") arbitration award. After noting the limited grounds upon which an arbitration award may be vacated, the state supreme court reversed the trial court's decision to vacate the award.

Carter v. Bennett: Federal Court Finds Employer Reasonably Accomodated Blind Employee

January 1, 1988: 

In Carter v. Bennett, the D.C. Circuit court held that the employer, a division of the federal government, did not assign a blind employee to a position in which reasonable accommodation was impossible, and that the employer reasonably accommodated the employee.

Garb-Ko v. Lansing-Lewis Services: Michigan Appellate Court Holds Recission Appropriate Remedy for Contract Dispute Arising Out of Undisclosed Presence of Underground Storage Tanks

January 1, 1988: 

The plaintiff was a buyer under a sales contract executed with the defendant with respect to property on which leaking underground storage tanks were discovered after execution of the sales contract. Plaintiff sought specific performance of the contract to require defendant to close the sale and convey the property to it. The Court of Appeals of Michigan held that the unknown was a natural mistake of fact allowing rescission of the contract in this case.

O'Riordan v. Long Island BOR: New York Federal Court Finds That Membership-Based MLS Access Is Not in Violation of Antitrust Laws

January 1, 1988: 

In O'Riordan v. Long Island Board of REALTORS®, the district court addressed tying arrangements and group boycotts in the context of requiring Board membership to participate in a MLS. The court held that under Rule of Reason analysis, the Board practices did not constitute a group boycott or tying agreement in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.