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US v. Los Angeles Realty: Federal Court Opinions Outline Potential Trade Violations by Real Estate Professionals

U.S. v. Los Angeles Realty Board, 1973-1 Trade Cases (CCH) P 74,366, 1973 WL 767 (C.D. Cal. 1973) [Note: This opinion was not published in an official reporter and therefore should not be cited as authority. Please consult counsel before relying on this opinion.] was a consent decree, which in pertinent parts, enjoined the defendants from the following activities regarding the sale, lease, or management of real estate:

  1. Fixing, establishing, or maintaining any rate or amounts of commissions or fees;
  2. Urging, recommending, or suggesting that any person adhere to any schedule or other recommendation concerning the rate or amount of commissions or fees;
  3. Adopting, suggesting, publishing, or distributing any schedule or other recommendation concerning the rate or mount of commissions or fees;
  4. Taking any punitive action against any person based on that person's failure or refusal to adhere to any schedule or other recommendation concerning the rate or amount of commission or fees;
  5. Fixing, maintaining, suggesting, or enforcing any percentage division of commissions between the selling and listing broker; and
  6. Establishing, maintaining, or enforcing any fees for membership in the Board or MLS which are not related to the approximate cost of maintaining the organization as a going concern.

Other cases which incorporated some or all of the above restrictions include:

U.S. v. Real Estate Bd. of New York, 1974-2 Trade Cases (CCH) P 75,350, 1974 WL 962 (S.D.N.Y. 1974) [Note: This opinion was not published in an official reporter and therefore should not be cited as authority. Please consult counsel before relying on this opinion.]; U.S. v. Atlanta Real Estate Bd., 1972 Trade Cases (CCH) P 73,787, 1972 WL 516 (N.D. Ga. 1972) [Note: This opinion was not published in an official reporter and therefore should not be cited as authority. Please consult counsel before relying on this opinion.]; and U.S. v. Memphis Board of REALTORS®, 1972 Trade Cases (CCH) P 74,056, 1972 WL 581 (W.D. Tenn. 1972) [Note: This opinion was not published in an official reporter and therefore should not be cited as authority. Please consult counsel before relying on this opinion.].

Aside from the requirements listed above, two other cases enjoined additional activities:

U.S. v. Greater Pittsburgh BOR®, 1973-1 Trade Cases (CCH) P 74,454, 1973 WL 794 (W.D. Pa. 1973) [Note: This opinion was not published in an official reporter and therefore should not be cited as authority. Please consult counsel before relying on this opinion.] restrained boycotting, agreeing to boycott, or threatening to boycott any person; and/or refusing to do business with any person.

U.S. v. Real Estate Bd. of Metro. St. Louis, 1973-2 Trade Cases (CCH) P 74,774, 59 F.R.D. 637 (E.D. Mo. 1973) [Note: This opinion was not published in an official reporter and therefore should not be cited as authority. Please consult counsel before relying on this opinion.] prohibited adopting, enforcing, or claiming any rights under any bylaws, rule, or regulation providing that all members or any group of members must accept only exclusive rights to sell or listings for a specified period of time.