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Grievance Committee

Grievance Committee

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Grievance Committee

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  1. Grievance Committee

  2. Grievance Committee... • initial review of and screens complaints and requests • grand jury

  3. Grievance Committee does not • conduct hearings • determine violation or award • mediate or arbitrate business disputes

  4. Grievance Committee • appointed by president • confirmed by board of directors • balanced representation of membership • mature, experienced, knowledgeable person

  5. Arbitration requests Important questions • acceptable form • necessary parties named • timely filed • parties have standing • litigation pending • impartial panel

  6. Arbitration requests Important questions • basis for an award • mandatory or voluntary • amount too large or too small • matter too legally complex • knowledgeable arbitrators available

  7. Arbitration requests Options for action • forward for a hearing • dismiss request

  8. Arbitration requests Dismissal by grievance committee • may be appealed by either party • parties not attend

  9. Ethics complaints Important questions • complaint acceptable form • necessary parties named • timely filed • respondent a member or MLS participant of board

  10. Ethics complaints Important questions • litigation pending • impartial hearing panel • amend complaint • if complaint were true, could it violate Code

  11. Ethics complaints Options for action • amend complaint and forward for hearing • forward complaint as submitted by complainant for a hearing • dismiss complaint

  12. Ethics complaints Amendments/dismissals • dismissal appealable • parties do not attend appeal

  13. Grievance Committee Ethics Hearing Procedures Arbitration Hearing Procedures Rehearings & Ethics Appeals Procedural Review Arbitration Procuring Cause

  14. Ethics Hearing Procedures

  15. Hearing panel • three, preferably five • odd number

  16. Hearing panel • if REALTOR-ASSOCIATE® or REALTOR® other than principal is a party, at least one panel member should also be a nonprincipal • panel chair named by chair of professional standards committee

  17. Rights of parties • counsel • present evidence • witnesses • cross-examine witnesses • make closing statement

  18. Amending a complaint • prior to hearing: complainant may file. Hearing panel may disallow • during hearing: complainant or hearing panel

  19. Witnesses... • present only during testimony • the REALTOR® principal may remain throughout hearing

  20. Hearing panel’s decision • in writing • findings of fact • discipline

  21. Discipline • letter of warning • letter of reprimand • education • fine not to exceed $5,000 • probation for one year or less

  22. Discipline • suspension from board membership for not less than 30 days nor more than one year, or a fine of $5,000 in lieu of suspension • expulsion from board membership for one to three years • suspension or termination of MLS privileges

  23. Grievance Committee Ethics Hearing Procedures Arbitration Hearing Procedures Rehearings & Ethics Appeals Procedural Review Arbitration Procuring Cause

  24. Arbitration Hearing Procedures

  25. Arbitration Hearing Procedures • policy matters • submission to arbitration • arbitration hearing • arbitrators’ decision -- executive session

  26. Policy Matters • timing • fees • consistency with state law • prior litigation

  27. Policy matters Timing • within 180 days after closing • within 180 days after facts could have been known with reasonable diligence • whichever is later

  28. Policy Matters Fees • not to exceed $500

  29. Policy matters Consistency with state law • state law prevails • Uniform Arbitration Act • consult with board counsel

  30. Policy matters Consistency with state law Variations from state to state include: • advance agreements to arbitrate future disputes • agreements to binding arbitration after dispute occurs/arises • law does not recognize agreements to arbitrate before or after

  31. Policy matters Prior Litigation • matter previously litigated cannot be arbitrated • neither party to litigation may charge the other with failure or refusal to arbitrate

  32. Submission to arbitrationOne of three options: • signed agreements and deposits before hearing held • if no agreement/deposit, proceed if respondent participates in hearing • if no agreement/deposit/attendance, proceed if state law allows

  33. Arbitration hearing • the panel • witnesses • rights of parties during hearing

  34. Arbitration hearing The panel • three, preferably five, members • odd number

  35. Arbitration hearing The panel • majority of REALTORS® • if REALTOR-ASSOCIATE® or REALTOR® nonprincipal is involved, at least one panel member should be a nonprincipal • chair of panel named by chair of professional standards committee

  36. Arbitration hearing The panel • challenges for good and sufficient cause • additional state law requirements for arbitrators may apply

  37. Arbitration hearing Witnesses • present only during testimony • a REALTOR-ASSOCIATE® or REALTOR® nonprincipal on whose behalf action was brought is not considered a party; such nonprincipal may be a witness and is allowed to remain throughout hearing if affiliated with party

  38. Arbitration hearing Rights of parties during hearing • counsel (attorney at law) • evidence • witnesses

  39. Arbitration hearing Rights of parties during hearing • cross-examine witnesses • make closing statement Note: state law - subpoena power

  40. Arbitrators’ decision • executive session • the award

  41. Arbitrators’ decision Executive session • parties dismissed; panel makes award • board counsel may be present to provide procedural guidance and answer legal questions • no predetermined rules

  42. Arbitrators’ decision The award Standard of proof • preponderance of the evidence (the 51 percent rule) • ethics - clear, strong, and convincing

  43. Arbitrators’ decision The award Form of award • only amount • no findings of fact or rationale • not greater than amount requested • signed by arbitrators (or majority)

  44. Arbitrators’ decision The award Form of award • no dissenting opinion • no discussions with parties • in ethics can dissent

  45. Grievance Committee Ethics Hearing Procedures Arbitration Hearing Procedures Rehearings & Ethics Appeals Procedural Review Arbitration Procuring Cause

  46. Rehearings & Ethics Appeals

  47. Rehearings & Ethics Appeals • rehearings • appeal hearings • directors’ decision about appeal • directors’ action if no appeal filed

  48. Rehearings • complainant and respondent have right to rehearing • newly discovered evidence

  49. Rehearings • same hearing panel • petitioner given opportunity to present new evidence • scope of rehearing limited to new evidence

  50. Appeal hearings Formalities • deposit maximum $250 • in writing • clearly state bases for challenge