Failing to Report a Conviction or Plea to the Florida Real Estate Commission
If you’ve been convicted of a criminal offense in Florida, and you are a licensed real estate agent, the repercussions can take a toll on your mental health, finances, social life, and job. What’s more, you may also have to endure court appearances, fines, and a suspension or revocation of your professional real estate license.
If you’re a Florida real estate agent involved with a criminal conviction or the acceptance of a plea deal, it’s essential that you understand the rules and regulations that are set by the State of Florida and the Florida Real Estate Commission (FREC). Failing to do so could result in additional consequences beyond what has already been imposed by the criminal justice system. Here’s everything that you need to know.
What Are the Repercussions for Failing to Report a Conviction or Plea Deal to FREC?
For licensed real estate agents in the State of Florida, it’s important to understand that withholding criminal convictions or plea deals from the Florida Real Estate Commission could put your livelihood in jeopardy. FREC has the right to take disciplinary action against your license if you fail to report to them that you’ve been convicted or found guilty of a crime, even if that crime wasn’t committed in Florida.
Florida Statute 456.072 notes that anyone who is licensed in the State of Florida can be disciplined for not reporting their crime to the board within 30 days, including licensed real estate agents:
“Failing to report to the board, or the department if there is no board, in writing within 30 days after the licensee has been convicted or found guilty of, or entered a plea of nolo contendere to, regardless of adjudication, a crime in any jurisdiction. Convictions, findings, adjudications, and pleas entered into prior to the enactment of this paragraph must be reported in writing to the board…”
For a first offense, you could face the following:
- An administrative fine of between $250 and $1,000
- License suspension or revocation.
If you have two or more offenses, you could face an administrative fine of between $1,000 and $5,000, and your license could also be suspended or revoked. In determining this, FREC will consider factors such as the type of criminal charge for which you’re convicted, the degree of harm you’ve inflicted on the public, and whether you’ve had prior disciplinary issues.
Fortunately, with an expert criminal defense lawyer by your side, you may be able to reduce or completely eliminate the penalties associated with the crime.
How to Defend Yourself If Facing a Crime Directly Related to Real Estate
If someone files a complaint against you, there are a number of penalties you might face that could damage your career and personal life. Penalties that real estate agents or brokers might face include:
- A license suspension of up to ten years
- An administrative fine up to $5,000 per violation
- Probationary status on your professional license
- Revocation and termination of your real estate license
- A worsened reputation
If a complaint has been filed against you, contact an expert Orlando license defense attorney with experience in real estate law as soon as possible. At The Umansky Law Firm, our attorneys can guide you through each stage of the process and help you determine the most strategic course of action based on the nature of the complaint. Likewise, we can help you prepare your defense, mitigate any potential penalties, and represent and defend you before the board.
Contact the Trusted Attorneys at The Umansky Law Firm
If you’ve been convicted of a criminal act and are facing penalties for failing to report the crime to the Florida Real Estate Commission—or if you’ve received an administrative complaint from the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation directly relating to real estate—seek professional legal assistance. For help protecting your rights, look no further than the expert legal team at The Umansky Law Firm.
As former prosecutors and public defenders on a state and local level, our Orlando criminal defense attorneys can provide you with a sound strategy and a concrete defense. With over 100 years of combined legal experience, our team has the time and expertise to launch an investigation into your case. We understand the ins and outs of Florida real estate law and serve to protect you from further punishment and damage to your reputation.
Call (407) 228-3838 or complete our online contact form for a free consultation.