Except as provided in a reciprocal agreement under s. 452.05 (3)
, the board may not grant a broker's license to an applicant who does not hold a salesperson's license unless the applicant passes the salesperson's examination and the broker's examination.
An applicant is not eligible for examination unless the applicant has satisfied the applicable requirements under sub. (2)
Any person who is a resident of this state and 18 years of age or over may, upon application filed in accordance with sub. (1)
, be indentured to a licensed resident broker in accordance with rules promulgated by the board. These rules shall be promulgated so as to protect the public and may limit the real estate sales and brokerage activity of the apprentice. The board may require an apprentice to take a preliminary examination covering general knowledge and may prescribe the character and extent of his or her work during apprenticeship. The board may issue a temporary salesperson's permit to the individual for a period not to exceed one year upon payment of the fee under s. 440.05 (6)
. The temporary permit is not renewable.
See also chs. REEB 12
, and 25
, Wis. adm. code.
Applications, verification, fees, exceptions. 452.10(1)(1)
An application shall be verified by the applicant. If made by a business entity it shall be verified by a business representative.
Each new application for a broker's or salesperson's license shall be for the remainder of the biennial license period.
Unless an application is withdrawn in writing before the board has made any investigation, no part of the fee shall be returned.
The fees for examinations and licenses granted under this chapter are specified under s. 440.05
, and the renewal fee for such licenses is determined by the department under s. 440.03 (9) (a)
Any licensed salesperson or broker may transfer to the employment of a licensed broker by first paying the transfer fee specified in s. 440.05 (7)
and filing a transfer form with the board.
No salesperson, time-share salesperson or broker may be employed by a broker whose license has been suspended or revoked during the period of suspension or revocation. The salesperson, time-share salesperson or broker may apply for transfer to some other licensed broker by complying with this chapter, provided the salesperson, time-share salesperson or broker is not a party to the activities causing the suspension or revocation of the license of the broker.
In the case of applications for renewals of licenses the board may dispense with such matters contained in s. 452.09 (1)
as it deems unnecessary in view of prior applications.
See also ch. REEB 12
, Wis. adm. code.
The real estate examining board cannot prescribe the name to be used on an application for a real estate broker's license. 66 Atty. Gen. 21.
Nonresident applicants and licensees. 452.11(1)
A nonresident may become a broker, salesperson or time-share salesperson by conforming to all the provisions of this chapter.
Every nonresident applicant, and every resident licensee who becomes a nonresident, shall file with the board an irrevocable consent that actions may be commenced against the applicant or licensee in the proper court of any county of the state in which a cause of action arises or in which the plaintiff resides, by the service of any process or pleading authorized by the laws of this state on the board or any duly authorized employee. The consent shall stipulate and agree that such service is valid and binding as due service upon the applicant or licensee in all courts in this state. The consent shall be duly acknowledged and, if made by a corporation, shall be authenticated by the corporate seal.
Any process or pleading under this section shall be served in duplicate upon the board or its duly authorized employee. One copy shall be filed with the board and the other immediately forwarded by certified mail to the nonresident licensee against whom the process or pleading is directed at the last address provided to the board by the nonresident licensee. No default in any such proceeding or action may be taken unless it appears by affidavit of the chairperson of the board or any duly authorized employee that a copy of the process or pleading was mailed to the nonresident licensee as required in this subsection. No judgment by default may be taken in any action or proceeding within 20 days after the date of mailing the process or pleading to the nonresident licensee.
See also ch. REEB 12
, Wis. adm. code.
A license granted by the board entitles the holder to act as a broker or salesperson, as the case may be, until the applicable renewal date specified under s. 440.08 (2) (a)
A license may be issued to a business entity if the business entity has at least one business representative licensed as a broker. The license issued to the business entity entitles each business representative of the business entity who is a licensed broker to act as a broker on behalf of the business entity.
Application for a business entity license shall be made on forms prescribed by the board, listing the names and addresses of all business representatives, and shall be accompanied by the initial credential fee determined by the department under s. 440.03 (9) (a)
. If there is a change in any of the business representatives, the change shall be reported to the board, on the same form, within 30 days after the effective date of the change.
(3) Broker's liability for acts of employees.
Each broker shall supervise, and is responsible for, the brokerage services provided on behalf of the broker by any broker, salesperson, or time-share salesperson who is an employee of the broker.
(4) Register of brokers and salespersons.
The board shall include in the register the board maintains under s. 440.035 (4)
the names of all brokers and salespersons whose licenses were revoked within the past 2 years. The register shall be available for purchase at cost.
Renewal applications for all licenses shall be submitted with the applicable renewal fee determined by the department under s. 440.03 (9) (a)
on or before the applicable renewal date specified under s. 440.08 (2) (a)
. The department shall pay $10 of each renewal fee received under this paragraph to the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System for research and educational, public outreach, and grant activities under s. 36.25 (34)
If an application for renewal is not filed with the board on or before the renewal date, the applicant may not engage in any of the activities covered by the license until the license is renewed or a new license is issued.
At the time of renewal, each broker or salesperson shall submit proof of attendance at and successful completion of continuing education programs or courses approved under s. 452.05 (1) (g)
Any licensee, except a time-share salesperson registered under s. 452.025
, may apply for registration as an inactive licensee on or before the license renewal date. This paragraph does not apply after October 31, 1995.
Unless an applicant's license has been revoked or suspended under s. 452.14 (3)
, the board may register the applicant under par. (a)
as an inactive licensee upon payment of a $15 fee.
Inactive licensees may not engage in real estate practice.
If an inactive licensee files an application for reinstatement before January 1, 1996, the board shall reinstate the inactive licensee's original license in accordance with the requirements for late renewal under s. 440.08 (3)
If a person has registered as an inactive licensee before November 1, 1990, the board shall reinstate the person's original license if that person applies to the board for reinstatement of his or her original license, pays the fee specified under s. 440.05 (1)
, passes an examination under s. 452.09 (3)
, and completes the education requirements established by the board under par. (f)
If a person has registered as an inactive licensee on or after November 1, 1990, the board shall reinstate the person's original license if that person applies to the board for reinstatement of his or her original license, pays the renewal fee determined by the department under s. 440.03 (9) (a)
for the original license and completes the continuing education requirements established by the board under par. (f)
. A person who is eligible for reinstatement of his or her original license under this subdivision shall complete the requirements for reinstatement under this subdivision before January 1, 1996, or within 5 years after the date on which the person registered as an inactive licensee, whichever is later.
If a person who is eligible for reinstatement of his or her original license under subd. 2.
does not complete the requirements for reinstatement within the time specified under subd. 2.
, the board shall reinstate the original license of that person if he or she meets the requirements specified under subd. 1.
The board shall promulgate rules establishing the education requirements that applicants for reinstatement of original licenses under par. (e)
See also chs. REEB 17
, and 25
, Wis. adm. code.
"Client funds" means all downpayments, earnest money deposits or other money related to a conveyance of real estate that is received by a broker, salesperson or time-share salesperson on behalf of the broker's, salesperson's or time-share salesperson's principal or any other person. "Client funds" does not include promissory notes.
"Depository institution" means a bank, savings bank, savings and loan association or credit union that is authorized by federal or state law to do business in this state and that is insured by the federal deposit insurance corporation or by the national credit union share insurance fund.
(2) Interest-bearing common trust account. 452.13(2)(a)(a)
A broker who holds client funds shall establish an interest-bearing common trust account in a depository institution. The interest-bearing common trust account shall earn interest at a rate not less than that applicable to individual accounts of the same type, size and duration and for which withdrawals or transfers can be made without delay, subject to any notice period that the depository institution is required to observe by law or regulation.
Any broker who maintains an interest-bearing common trust account shall do all of the following:
Register with the department of safety and professional services the name and address of the depository institution and the number of the interest-bearing common trust account.
Notify the department of safety and professional services when any of the information required under subd. 1.
Furnish the department of safety and professional services with a letter authorizing the department of safety and professional services and the department of administration to examine and audit the interest-bearing common trust account whenever the department of safety and professional services or the department of administration considers it necessary.
The department of safety and professional services shall forward to the department of administration the information and documents furnished under par. (b)
A broker shall deposit all client funds in the interest-bearing common trust account.
The department of administration is the beneficial owner of the interest accruing to the interest-bearing common trust account, minus any service charges or fees.
For each interest-bearing common trust account, the broker shall direct the depository institution to do all of the following:
Annually, before February 1, remit to the department of administration the total interest or dividends, minus service charges or fees, earned on the average daily balance in the interest-bearing common trust account during the 12 months ending on the previous December 31. A depository institution is not required to remit any amount if the total interest or dividends for that period is less than $10 before any deduction for service charges or fees.
When the interest remittance is sent, furnish to the department of administration and to the broker maintaining the interest-bearing common trust account a statement that includes the name of the broker for whose account the remittance is made, the rate of interest applied, the amount of service charges or fees deducted, if any, and the account balance for the period that the statement covers.
May not assess a service charge or fee that is due on an interest-bearing common trust account against any broker or, except as provided in subd. 3.
, against any other account, regardless of whether the same broker maintains the other account.
May not assess a service charge or fee for an interest-bearing common trust account against the department of administration.
May deduct a service charge or fee from the interest earned by an interest-bearing common trust account, and if a balance remains, may deduct the remaining charge or fee from the interest earned on any other interest-bearing common trust account maintained in that depository institution, before remitting interest to the department of administration.
May not deduct a service charge or fee from the principal of an interest-bearing common trust account.
(3) Deposit provisions.
A broker who deposits client funds in an interest-bearing common trust account in compliance with this section may not be held liable to the owner or beneficial owner of the client funds for damages due to compliance with this section. A broker, salesperson or time-share salesperson who deposits client funds in an interest-bearing common trust account in compliance with this section is not required to disclose alternative depository arrangements that could be made by the parties or to disclose that a deposit will be made under this section.
(4) Trust account optional.
This section does not require a broker to hold client funds or require a person to transfer client funds to a broker.
In consultation with the department of safety and professional services, the department of administration shall promulgate rules necessary to administer this section.
See also chs. Adm 91
and REEB 18
, Wis. adm. code.
Security deposits by a tenant usually create a debtor-creditor relationship. A broker retaining a deposit should deposit it in his or her trust account. 60 Atty. Gen. 1.
The Federal National Mortgage Association is exempt from the requirements of this section, but private mortgage bankers or mortgage brokers licensed as real estate brokers under ch. 452, and servicing mortgages for FNMA must deposit loan, insurance and tax escrow moneys in authorized trust account in a bank located in Wisconsin, subject to audit by the board. 60 Atty. Gen. 514.
Broker's duties to all persons in a transaction.
A broker who is providing brokerage services to a person in a transaction owes all of the following duties to the person:
The duty to provide brokerage services honestly and fairly.
The duty to provide brokerage services with reasonable skill and care.
The duty to timely disclose in writing all material adverse facts that the broker knows and that the person does not know or cannot discover through reasonably vigilant observation, unless the disclosure of a material adverse fact is prohibited by law.
The duty to keep confidential any information given to the broker in confidence, or any information obtained by the broker that he or she knows a reasonable person would want to be kept confidential, unless the information must be disclosed by law or the person whose interests may be adversely affected by the disclosure specifically authorizes the disclosure of particular information. A broker shall continue to keep the information confidential after the transaction is complete and after the broker is no longer providing brokerage services to the person.
The duty to provide accurate information about market conditions that affect the person's transaction, within a reasonable time after the person's request, unless disclosure of the information is prohibited by law.
The duty to safeguard trust funds and other property held by the broker as required by rules promulgated by the department under s. 452.13 (5)
When the broker is negotiating on behalf of a party, the duty to present contract proposals in an objective and unbiased manner and disclose the advantages and disadvantages of the proposals.
(2) Broker's duties to a client.
A broker providing brokerage services to his or her client owes the client the duties that the broker owes to a person under sub. (1)
and all of the following additional duties:
The duty to loyally represent the client's interests by doing all of the following:
Placing the client's interests ahead of the broker's interests.
Placing the client's interests ahead of the interests of persons in the transaction who are not the broker's clients by not disclosing to persons in the transaction other than the broker's clients information or advice the disclosure of which is contrary to the interests of a client of the broker, unless the disclosure is required by law.
The duty to provide, when requested by the client, information and advice to the client on matters that are material to the client's transaction and that are within the scope of the knowledge, skills, and training required under this chapter.