From time to time, disputes arise over commissions - who was paid, who wasn't paid, and who thinks they should have been paid. The REALTOR® Associations have the mechanisms in place to settle such disputes. It is known as arbitration.
Arbitration is when an unbiased third party makes a decision regarding disputed funds. The process is very much like a court hearing-- The broker requesting the arbitration is known as the Complainant (or Requestor). The broker defending the funds is known as the Respondent. Each will present their case to a panel of their peers who have been trained to understand the issues and render an impartial decision. The panel will decide based on the preponderance of evidence which party is entitled to the disputed funds.
An arbitration is conducted between two brokers because agents are not paid commissions - their brokers are. Because an agent cannot receive funds, nor can they disburse funds, arbitrations must include someone who has the authority to receive and disburse monies.
If you are interested in filing a Request for Arbitration, please review the following items:
Request for Arbitration, Form A-1
Another avenue for dispute resolution through the Association is to request a mediation. A mediation is a process in which a third party facilitates a discussion between the disputing parties. It is a voluntary service that enables the parties to talk through any miscommunications and work towards a compromise. The mediator does not act as a judge and make a decision for the parties - the parties must reach a mutually agreeable solution in order for a mediation to work.
Because mediation is a voluntary process, if at any time during the discussion one party wishes to leave, they are free to do so. Resolution could then be sought either through arbitration or through the courts.
If you would like to request a mediation, please contact Susan Hansen, Director of Member Policy, at 208.947.7229.
More Information on Mediation: