Ethics Complaints, Arbitration Requests, and Related Information
REALTORS® are different from non-member licensees in that they voluntarily subscribe to a strict Code of Ethics. If you believe that a REALTOR® has violated one or more Articles of the Code of Ethics, you can file an ethics complaint alleging a violation(s) through the local association of REALTORS® where the REALTOR® holds membership, or participates in a REALTOR® association-owned/operated MLS. This link below are several resources to help you understand what filing and processing an ethics complaint and arbitration request entails, and the general process you can expect when filing an ethics complaint or arbitration request with a local association of REALTORS®. https://www.car.org/marketing/clients/ethics/
The National Association of REALTORS® Code of Ethics is what sets REALTORS® apart from other licensees. Violations of this code are taken very seriously. In most cases, you will file an ethics complaint with the local board of the person whom you feel is in violation of the Code.
If you have a problem with a real estate professional, you may want to speak with them or with a principal broker in the firm. Open, constructive discussion often resolves questions or differences, eliminating the need for further action. If, after discussing matters with your real estate professional or a principal broker in that firm, you are still not satisfied, you may want to contact the local board or association of REALTORS®. Many boards and associations have informal dispute resolving processes available to consumers (e.g. ombudsmen, mediation, etc.).
If, after taking these steps, you still feel you have a grievance, you many want to consider filing an ethics complaint. You will want to keep in mind that . . . only REALTORS® are subject to the Code of Ethics of the National Association of REALTORS®.
If the real estate professional (or their broker) you are dealing with is not a REALTOR®, your only recourse may be the state real state licensing authority or the courts.
Boards and associations of REALTORS® determine whether the Code of Ethics has been violated, not whether the law or real estate regulations have been broken. Those decisions can only be made by the licensing authorities or the courts.