New commissions case filed in Utah
NAR and several national and local brokerages are named in the suit — the first copycat commissions case to be filed in the state.
Utah has joined the growing list of states — 13 in total — being drawn into the buyer agent commission lawsuits.
Case details: On Feb. 9, a Utah home seller filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court of Utah against the National Association of Realtors and several brokerages. This is the first major buyer agent commission case to be filed in Utah.
Plaintiff: Dalton Jensen, who sold a house in the Salt Lake City area in October 2022 and paid a 6% commission that was split between the buyer agent and his listing agent.
Jensen alleges unlawful conduct and a conspiracy to keep commission fees took place, similar to the 17 other major cases filed since the Oct. 31 Sitzer/Burnett verdict. The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation is currently pondering whether to consolidate all of the buyer agent commission lawsuits into one large case.
"The cornerstone of defendants' conspiracy is NAR's adoption and implementation of a rule that requires all seller's brokers to make a blanket, unilateral and effectively nonnegotiable offer of buyer broker compensation when listing a property on a Multiple Listing Service," the court documents state.
Defendants: National Association of Realtors, Anywhere Real Estate, HomeServices of America and affiliated companies HSF Affiliates and BHH Affiliates, RE/MAX, Keller Williams, Keller Williams of Salt Lake, KW St. George, KW Westfield, Equity Real Estate, Century 21 Everest, Realtypath LLC and Windermere Real Estate.
This is a class action case, with the class encompassing any person who paid a buyer agent commission and used one of the defendants to sell a house over the past four years through the Wasatch Front MLS (UtahRealEstate.com), Washington County MLS, Iron County MLS or Summit County MLS.
Defendants Anywhere, RE/MAX and Keller Williams have reached preliminary settlement agreements encompassing other commissions cases. It is not yet clear how or if those settlements will apply to this case.