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Florida Realtors Legal Library

Florida Realtors attorneys provide detailed answers to questions about trending and important legal topics. Click on the links below for detailed information.  

DBPR licensing law


FREC


Fair Housing:


Landlord tenant


Lease contracts


Bankruptcy



Sept. 3, 2013: New release to residential contracts

             

Florida Realtors has now released new versions of the Florida Realtors/Florida Bar Residential Contract, its AS IS companion and the Comprehensive Rider.

Simply click on the Talking Contract and you'll be redirected to the digital flipbook. Click on any page and listen as the forms changes are clearly explained in audio format.

We're also providing redline and blackline versions of the forms – with changes indicated – and a summary of the changes. Additional tools will be delivered over the next several weeks.

Redline versions


Blackline versions


Summary of Revisions


Training materials 

 

 

July 10, 2013: Flood insurance 

The Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 is a federal law that reauthorizes the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for an additional 5 years but also requires a number of changes to the NFIP.  A key provision of the law requires the NFIP to raise rates to reflect true flood risk.  This means rate increases for some policyholders over time.  Because these rate increases can be significant, NAR has released legal guidance and a sample flood insurance disclosure statement for brokers and agents who market and sell property for which flood insurance may be required or that is located in an area where the purchase of flood insurance may be prudent. Read NAR’s legal guidance and sample flood insurance disclosure statement here.

 

 

 

July 10, 2013: Real Estate Appraisal Board amendment 

The Florida Real Estate Appraisal Board has amended 61J1-4.010, Supervision and Training of Registered Trainee  Appraisers. Some of the changes are significant, and Florida Appraisers involved in the supervision of Registered Trainee Appraisers should be aware of some new responsibilities.
 
1. Licensed Appraisers are no longer permitted to supervise Registered Trainee Appraisers. Only Certified Residential Appraisers and Certified General Appraisers may supervise.

2.Supervisory Appraisers must accept "full and complete" responsibility for "any research, data collection, development, analysis, or communication of any appraisal review or the appraisal report by signing and certifying the report is in compliance with USPAP."

3. The Supervisory Appraiser must personally inspect each appraised property with the trainee "for a minimum of the first twelve months of the registered trainee's initial registration, and thereafter" until the trainee is competent in accordance with the Competency Rule of USPAP.

4. A Registered Trainee Appraiser "may not sign an appraisal certification within the first twelve months of his or her registration as a trainee appraiser."

5. A Supervisory Appraiser must included the following statement in any report in which the registered trainee appraiser contributed to the development of the appraisal or the writing of the appraisal report: "I, the supervisory appraiser of a registered appraiser trainee who contributed to the development or communication of this appraisal, hereby accepts full and complete responsibility for any work performed by the registered appraise trainee named in this report as if it were my own work."  Read the full text of the rule. 

 

Feb. 12, 2013: Fannie Mae upgrades short sale process 

Fannie Mae has expanded its HomePath for Short Sales tool to help speed up the process.

Any real estate professional working on a short sale with a Fannie Mae-owned loan can use the new tool as part of a short sale escalation. Once a case is escalated, Fannie Mae will work directly with an agent or servicer to address challenges, such as valuation disputes, delays by servicers or uncooperative subordinate lien holders. Home Path has a webpage with more info for real estate pros about the short sale process.

 

 

March 1, 2012: FTC’s Business Opportunity Rule 

Brokerages or brokers, who solicit sales associates, may need to comply with the Federal Trade Commission’s Business Opportunity Rule (BOR).  Learn more. 

To find out more about compliance obligations, read the BOR, read information from NAR.    
 
MAP Rule: Mortgage Acts and Practices - Advertising

This Final Rule prohibits any misrepresentation in any commercial communication regarding any term of any mortgage credit product; and imposes certain recordkeeping requirements.
 
 
Property Management 

The Fair Credit Reporting Act has been amended.  Effective July 21, 2011, if you take action that requires you to provide a Notice of Adverse Action and the adverse action is based in whole or in part on a numerical credit score,  you must now also provide the consumer a written or electronic disclosure that includes the following additional information:

•    A numerical credit score;
•    The range of possible credit scores under the model used;
•    All of the key factors that adversely affected the credit score of the consumer in the model used, the total number of which shall not exceed 4;
•    The date on which the credit score was created; and
•    The name of the person or entity that provided the credit score or credit file upon which the credit score was created.

 

Document Downloads
 

Steps Under FS 475.25(1)(d)1 for Escrow Disputes


Attorney General letter interpreting 475.42 (1)(d), Florida Statutes

This document outlines circumstances when a sales associate may be paid directly. 

FREC final order payment of commissions
This FREC final order states that a sales associate may be paid commission directly at closing upon the broker’s written authorization identifying the transaction, the sales associate to be paid and the amount of commission to be paid.

Can-do's for unlicensed assistants
Do you have a personal assistant? FREC has provided these new guidelines for activities an unlicensed assistant may legally undertake.