Answered Essay: Describe three of the main ethical considerations that are specifically important to remember in the Real Estate law practice.

Describe three of the main ethical considerations that are specifically important to remember in the Real Estate law practice.

Expert Answer

 

Of all of the new facts in representing consumers in real estate transactions, surely the least friendly is the new reality of the vastly growing number of claims against attorneys based upon disputes and violations of ethics or rules of professional behavior.

Given the large breath of the topic, it is virtually difficult to reduce to a simple form all of the issues which are involved. Consequently, the focus of this brief article will be on general ethics and professionalism issues in real estate matters in general and a discussion of the intensified risks for attorneys in serving regulated financial institutions in specific.

1) Ducking and Managing Law Society Complaints

Majority of the charges received by the Law Society stem from real estate related files. Replying to a Law Society complaint is one of the last issues any lawyer wants to do. Fortunately, a large part of complaints that the Law Society receives is easily avoidable. Clients often have opinions about how their transaction will proceed and how their attorney should act. A client could be unsatisfied about a lawyer’s representation during a transaction, while in the lawyer’s mind, the deal has been a success. A strong lawyer will make sure that he or she gets behind to clients quickly and keeps them apprised as to the order of their file.

In utmost real estate cases, legal assistants and paralegals conduct a significant part of work on files. Incompetent to properly oversee staff has led to many charges against real estate lawyers. Also, agents should ensure all subjects requiring expert skill and judgment are dealt with by a council and that legal information is only given by authorized persons.

2) Serving Multiple Interests in Real Estate Transactions

There are often occasions when a client will ask a real estate lawyer to describe both sides in a real estate deal. Lawyers handling activities other than real estate rarely even contemplate representing both sides in a transaction. However, when it happens to real estate transactions, there are situations that enable real estate lawyers to begin joint representations.

Should a prosecutor be asked to act for more than one individual in a real estate transaction, it is necessary they carefully examine for whom they are being asked to act and what could be a conflict of interest. The jurisdiction’s acknowledged code of conduct should be rigorously adhered to. Lawyers should be careful even if the transaction looks to be straightforward with little potential for a conflict of interest.

3) Relying on Other Real Estate Professionals

Real estate sales involve an array of professionals. Real estate licensees, inspectors, environmental specialists, and appraisers often give advice that is relied upon by buyers or lenders. Accordingly, shoppers and lenders have legal support against these experts if the property or security received is not as represented.

Also, each of these specialists owes a duty to their clients, or, in some circumstances, to third parties. If rescission is not available or the sale has concluded, a real estate agent should advise their clients to examine claims against the other real estate experts involved in the deal.

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