Antitrust & Competition Policy Blog

Editor: D. Daniel Sokol
University of Florida
Levin College of Law

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Tuesday, May 10, 2005

DoJ Investigates National Association of Realtors

The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that for the past eighteen months, the Department of Justice has been investigating the practices of the National Association of Realtors prohibiting the listing of properties on competitor's websites and various state laws that limit rebates and competition in commission rates.  As today's Washington Post describes:

"The issue boils down to whether a listing agent can effectively claim ownership rights to a home listing, deciding where and when it can be displayed on the Internet, for the duration of the listing contract, which usually runs between 60 and 90 days.

"The Realtors' group argues that agents work hard to get listings and so should be entitled to choose whether a home can also be displayed on a competitor's Web site."

The Post also reports that the DoJ filed a lawsuit against the State of Kentucky challenging a state law prohibiting rebates to customers by realtors.

Jessica Swesey reports on the story for Inman News (a subscription site), quoting this blogger as well as other antitrust specialists.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/antitrustprof_blog/2005/05/doj_investigate.html

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