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#416301 - 11/30/12 05:28 PM Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents
new agent Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/30/12
Posts: 4
Loc: los angeles, ca
I'm a new agent and am considering joining Coldwell Banker (CB).
CB has a mandatory, $2,095 per year, legal assistance program, on top of the usual realtor/mls fees.
70/30 split, 1.75% desk fee/affiliate fee on finalized transactions (closings).

How do other big brokers compare? Do they have mandatory legal assistance programs?

CB 2 week training seems highly rated. First 2 transactions are overseen by manager.

I just don't want to find out I made a big mistake 6 months down the road, having paid that much up front to be associated with a large broker.

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#416313 - 11/30/12 10:13 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
CALIF DREAMING Offline
Veteran Member

Registered: 08/01/06
Posts: 1303
Loc: Downey, California
WOW, a hefty legal assistance fee...now, why didn't I think of that to charge my struggling agents? Oh, just remembered why, it is a free member service from the California Association of Realtors.
_________________________
"People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing"....Dale Carnegie

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#416321 - 12/01/12 05:14 AM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
pikes peak Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 12/15/04
Posts: 2796
Loc: CO
I thought that is why we pay for E&O insurance? I'd look for a different company.

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#416339 - 12/01/12 10:16 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: pikes peak]
new agent Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/30/12
Posts: 4
Loc: los angeles, ca
It's not E&O, it's a legal assistance program. It's a program that hires in-house or out-house lawyers to defend you and the broker in case any one files a suit against you.

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#416340 - 12/01/12 10:35 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
CALIF DREAMING Offline
Veteran Member

Registered: 08/01/06
Posts: 1303
Loc: Downey, California
Then that is what E & O is for with limitations.

I suggest you interview and compare other brokers and if possible, speak with an agent or two in the brokers' office before deciding. Gee, you have not even started making money yet and you are being hit up for fees up the ying yang.

This is the first time I am hearing about such a fee, but maybe someone else who works for one of the franchises may jump in and explain it better, if it does exist.
_________________________
"People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing"....Dale Carnegie

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#416341 - 12/01/12 10:36 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
Vermont Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 04/12/08
Posts: 6581
Loc: Vermont's North-East Kingdom
I wanna see one of those Out-House Lawyers; but NOT in his Office.
_________________________
Dale C. Hittle of GOLDEN RULE PROPERTIES in Glover, Vermont
Where We're Always Striving To Put Together "THE FAIR DEAL"

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#416342 - 12/01/12 10:39 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: Vermont]
CALIF DREAMING Offline
Veteran Member

Registered: 08/01/06
Posts: 1303
Loc: Downey, California
LOL.....this is California.....out house lawyers must line up behind the ambulance chasers.
_________________________
"People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing"....Dale Carnegie

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#416347 - 12/02/12 01:51 AM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: CALIF DREAMING]
new agent Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/30/12
Posts: 4
Loc: los angeles, ca
E&O I assumed was for protection, but not in this case.
I forgot to mention that this is a CB broker in an upscale area of Los Angeles, California.

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#416357 - 12/02/12 01:49 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
Vermont Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 04/12/08
Posts: 6581
Loc: Vermont's North-East Kingdom
Originally Posted By: new agent
I forgot to mention that this is a CB broker in an upscale area of Los Angeles, California.

Well then, if it's "upscale", everything has to be super-sized, even if it smells a little like a swindle.

Remember, when disgruntled Customers and Clients want to sue, they go for the deepest pockets and sue the Broker. You're just going to be an Agent of the Broker, who is vicariously responsible for every mistake you make (if any). That's why they carry E&O.

This legal assistance program gives the appearance of being a separate little kitty or contingency fund that they like to have you feed "just in case"; but above and beyond the ordinary E&O Coverage. Is it a pooled fund, or are your contributions kept separate to pay for your defense so that just in case, unlikely as it may be, that someone sues you specifically, and no one else . . . . you'll be covered ?

And if you leave without ever tapping your Fund, without the excitement of being sued individually . . . . can you take your money with you ?

I think you already know the answer . . . . but it's upscale !

BTW, that there 1% Desk Fee . . . . how's that calculated ?
Is it off the top or 1% of your 70% of the 70/30 split ?

Good Luck.
_________________________
Dale C. Hittle of GOLDEN RULE PROPERTIES in Glover, Vermont
Where We're Always Striving To Put Together "THE FAIR DEAL"

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#416363 - 12/02/12 05:36 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: Vermont]
new agent Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/30/12
Posts: 4
Loc: los angeles, ca
CB charges the legal fee every year. Move, and you lose it. The way CB explains it is that even if you move to another broker, you could be sued for your time at CB.

I'll need to get back to you on the desk fee, to see if it's from the top, or from my 70%.

I wished that any CB realtors would chime in, from the LA area.

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#416377 - 12/02/12 06:56 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
Malok Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/07
Posts: 441
Loc: Kentucky - in a barn!
I'm not familiar with such a fee. I'd talk to other franchises (RE/Max, Keller Williams, Century 21, etc) and see if that is common practice for them as well.

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#416645 - 12/07/12 10:35 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: new agent]
KT Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 1581
Loc: Ohio
So I took a couple of minutes & Googled this whole thing. CB has this program included with a copy of their IC agreement in a .pdf online. From my understanding it could, but doesn't nec, replace an office's E&O policy. It's almost like an in-house E&O type deal.

It seems like the same concept, except that it's paid for upfront. Any co around here I've been with did/does charge for E&O on per transaction basis.

Usually, when an agent/broker (or any one who carries E&O insurance) is sued, the policy that was in effect at the time of service; ie, date of sale, would cover the lawsuit. As long as it wasn't a Fair Housing violation, or fraud, or something criminal.

Unless CB's "program" is underwritten by an actual insurance co, and they have an addition E&O policy, I would want more info before tossing in the dough. Like what's covered, what isn't, what are the "program's" limits money-wise.

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#416650 - 12/08/12 03:07 AM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: KT]
johnnyloans Offline
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/29/09
Posts: 837
Loc: Los Angeles ,CA
If your broker is responsible for making sure you are properly trained and you follow the code of ethics why should you need legal insurance on top of E and O insurance?
_________________________
Johnny James
Real Estate Broker in CA
(424) 666-7894
Greater Los Angeles Area
www.PalmdaleRealestate.biz
Have Car Will Travel
For Those That Google JohnnyJamesBroker@gmail.com

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#416659 - 12/08/12 01:29 PM Re: Coldwell Banker mandatory legal assistance program for new agents [Re: johnnyloans]
Vermont Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 04/12/08
Posts: 6581
Loc: Vermont's North-East Kingdom
Originally Posted By: johnnyloans
If your broker is responsible for making sure you are properly trained and you follow the code of ethics why should you need legal insurance on top of E and O insurance?
Follow the money. Insurance Companies exist to feed off the fear of the "what if"; but in this case, some executive within Coldwell Banker has been influenced to think that this should be mandatory.

Once the need had been created, you can never have too much insurance . . . . too little money; but not too much insurance.

It's like when they invented "Suspenders" . . . . didn't they replace the need for a Belt ?

Why no, what if something happened to the Suspenders? You're still covered by the Belt, and vice-versa. So many careful consumers wear both a Belt and Suspenders just to be on the "safe side". Nothing wrong with that, and besides, more people are employed.

But I digress.

(Follow the money !)
_________________________
Dale C. Hittle of GOLDEN RULE PROPERTIES in Glover, Vermont
Where We're Always Striving To Put Together "THE FAIR DEAL"

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