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There has been a lot of news going around about a recent lawsuit that affects the real estate industry. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) press release, “after an 11-day trial in the case of Burnett v. NAR et al, the eight-person jury in a Kansas City, Mo., federal courtroom, came back Tuesday and found the National Association of REALTORS® and other corporate defendants liable in the case.” NAR along with Homeservices of America and Keller Williams Realty were found to be liable for $1.8 billion in damages for conspiring to keep commissions artificially high. It is important to note that this case will likely be appealed and most experts think this will take years to unfold. There is also much speculation on how this affects the real estate industry.


In many real estate transactions, there are two real estate agents; one representing the seller of the home (known as a Listing Agent) and one real estate agent representing the buyer of the home (known as the Buyer Agent). These professionals know their local markets, have superior negotiating skills, and can generally make the entire buying and selling process easier. In exchange for their expertise, real estate agents earn compensation.

The Listing Agent may be paid by the Seller in the form of a percentage of the sale price as commission. The Buyer Agent may also be paid by the Seller or may be paid by the Buyer at an agreed upon percentage. It’s important to note that real estate transactions can vary, and the specifics of who pays the buyer agent commission is always subject to negotiations.



  1. Real estate agents are still going to assist buyers and sellers in the sale of real estate.
  2. Sellers are NOT obligated and never were obligated to pay Buyer Agent Commissions.
  3. This lawsuit is complex and still ongoing.


How the outcome of this lawsuit will affect how real estate compensations are decided upon is not yet certain. What we do know is that experienced real estate agents are paramount in every real estate transaction and this will not change.


Please contact us.

Also feel free to compare this update with last month’s Market Update – November 2023.