BAM Key Details: 

  • Utah has now joined the list of states (13 in total) with class action copycat lawsuits filed in the wake of the Sitzer/Burnett verdict. 
  • Dalton Jensen, a Utah home seller, is alleging conspiracy within the real estate industry to inflate agent commissions. 

A Utah home seller, Dalton Jensen, filed a complaint on February 9, 2024, in the U.S. District Court of Utah against the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and several real estate brokerages. 

The plaintiff sold a home in the Salt Lake City area in October 2022. He paid a 6% commission that was split between his listing agent and the buyer agent. 

Like other seller plaintiffs in the 17 other major copycat lawsuits, Jensen is alleging unlawful conduct and a conspiracy to set and enforce commission rates. 

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 non-negotiable offer of buyer broker compensation when listing a property on a Multiple Listing Service.

Court document for Jensen vs NAR, et al

Meanwhile, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation is deciding whether to consolidate all the class action buyer agent commission lawsuits into one large case. And NAR is pushing for a trial in a state other than Missouri. 

Read on for the highlights. 

Defendants

Defendants include

  • National Association of Realtors (NAR)
  • Anywhere Real Estate
  • HomeServices of America—plus 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
  • Windermere Real Estate

Plaintiff class

Jensen vs NAR is a class action lawsuit, with the class including anyone who paid a buyer agent commission and used an agent affiliated with one of the defendants to sell a home over the past four years through Wasatch Front MLS (UtahRealEstate.com), Washington County MLS, Iron County MLS or Summit County MLS.

Complications

Three of the national defendants—Anywhere, RE/MAX, and Keller Williams—have made preliminary settlement agreements that encompass other commission cases naming them as defendants. It’s not yet clear whether those settlements will apply to this new case. 

Stay tuned for further developments in this case. And bookmark the BAM Lawsuit Watch blog to stay informed of recent updates.