A broker is generally entitled to a commission when he or she finds a buyer or tenant who is ready, willing and able to buy or rent on the terms set forth by owner or landlord. Although the rule sounds simple, disputes over failure to pay brokerage commissions are surprisingly common.
Of course, there are countless variations that depend on the actual brokerage contract. These disputes can also be extremely complex, requiring the assistance of an experienced attorney. At the New York law firm of Arthur R. Lehman, we have more than 30 years of experience successfully resolving real estate brokerage disputes. Our record of results is proof of our ability to succeed in even the most challenging cases.
Real estate brokerage contracts outline the rights and duties of both the broker and the buyer or seller. The contract should set forth when the broker is entitled to a fee or commission. In some cases, the contract will provide that the broker earns a fee only if there is a closing of a sale or lease. The contract will typically outline the broker’s duties, such as showing the property, creating promotional brochures and advertising the property. The contract should also discuss the owner’s or landlord’s obligations, such as providing financial information necessary for a potential buyer or tenant
Many real estate brokerage contracts include “tail” provisions, which cover the rights of both parties following the conclusion of the contract. This provision may lay out the broker’s right to a commission if any transaction takes place after the end of the contract with any of the leads he or she has generated. If one of those leads results in a sale after the contract has ended, the broker might be entitled to a commission. Many disputes arise over this type of provision.
In some cases, the broker may seek a commission even if the transaction does not close. The broker may have fulfilled its obligations, but the owner may have taken some action that prevented the sale from completing. Our law firm is skilled at finding efficient and cost-effective resolutions to challenging disputes like these.
Whether you are interested in having us handle your case, are looking for feedback about the direction your case is currently going in or are a fellow lawyer seeking assistance, call 212-697-2715 or e-mail us to schedule a consultation with our New York real estate brokerage disputes attorney.