Who is included in “et al?”
The four largest national real estate broker franchisors…
Realogy Holdings Corp.,
HomeServices of America, Inc.,
RE/MAX Holdings, Inc., and
Keller Williams Realty, Inc.,
MLSs named as defendants…
The Bright MLS (including the metropolitan areas of Baltimore, Maryland; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Richmond, Virginia; Washington, D.C.);
My Florida Regional MLS (including the metropolitan areas of Tampa, Orlando, and Sarasota);
The five MLSs in the Mid-West that cover the following metropolitan areas: Cleveland, Ohio; Columbus, Ohio; Detroit, Michigan; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Minneapolis, Minnesota;
The six MLSs in the Southwest that cover the following metropolitan areas: Austin, Texas; Dallas, Texas; Houston, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada; Phoenix, Arizona; San Antonio Texas;
The three MLSs in the Mountain West that cover the following metropolitan areas: Colorado Springs, Colorado; Denver, Colorado; Salt Lake City, Utah;
The four MLSs in the Southeast that cover the following metropolitan areas: Fort Myers, Florida; Miami, Florida; Charlotte, North Carolina; and Raleigh, North Carolina….
Conspiring to require home sellers to pay the broker representing the buyer of their homes, and to pay at an inflated amount, in violation of federal antitrust law.
This case has the potential to change the residenial sales business in a dramatic way. Some people say no way. I am reserving judgement, but it doesn’t look all that promising from where I sit.
This Civil Antitrust Litigation working on gaining Class Action Status which could affect you, your broker or franchise, your MLS…and maybe all MLSs.
On October 2, 2020, the Honorable Andrea R. Wood of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois denied Defendants’ motions to dismiss, allowing all of Plaintiffs’ antitrust claims to proceed.
A good summary and relevant documents are available at the link. Here is a piece from the attorney’s site:
On March 6, 2019, Cohen Milstein and co-counsel filed a putative antitrust class action in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois on behalf of home sellers who paid a broker commission in the last four years in connection with the sale of residential real estate listed on one of twenty Multiple Listing Services (“MLSs”), covering several major metropolitan areas in the Mid-Atlantic, Mid-West, South-West, Mountain-West, and Southeast regions.
Plaintiffs, home sellers who listed their homes on one of twenty MLSs bring this action against the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the four largest national real estate broker franchisors, Realogy Holdings Corp., HomeServices of America, Inc., RE/MAX Holdings, Inc., and Keller Williams Realty, Inc., for conspiring to require home sellers to pay the broker representing the buyer of their homes, and to pay at an inflated amount, in violation of federal antitrust law.
Plaintiffs allege that Defendants’ conspiracy has centered around NAR’s adoption and implementation of a mandatory rule that requires all brokers to make a blanket, non-negotiable offer of buyer broker compensation (the “Buyer Broker Commission Rule”) when listing a property on a MLS…