When does real estate recruiting step over the line? Perhaps when it becomes unlawful. Tortious interference with a business relationship is a legal concept which recognizes certain activities of this nature such as brokerages recruiting agents from other brokerages. These tactics come in the form of sending cards and materials, inviting agents to their training programs or company functions, paying their agents to recruit, calling to compliment the agent on an accomplishment, or other tactics used to engage the target. Are these motives sincere or are they acting in a disingenuous manner to gain their financial advantage to the detriment of another?
Tortious Interference with Business Relationship. A tortious interference with a business relationship is applicable when there may not have been a specific contractual relationship. Here, one must show:
- existence of a business relationship
- defendant’s knowledge of the business relationship
- defendant wrongdoer’s intentional interference causing a breach or termination of the relationship
- damages resulting from wrongdoer’s action
Representations made that an agent’s success is directly correlated to the recruiting company’s business model could be construed as violation of NAR’s Code of Ethics, as well. As these recruiting practices continue to ramp up, it will be interesting to see if NAR sits on the sidelines or will they call a foul in the name of fairness? At this time, only the agent can decide whether the overtures are sincere and legitimate or simply ploys to gain access to their services.