Real Estate and Escrow Activities

ORS 696.301
Grounds for discipline

Subject to ORS 696.396 (Investigation of complaints and progressive discipline), the Real Estate Commissioner may suspend or revoke the real estate license of any real estate licensee, reprimand any real estate licensee or deny the issuance or renewal of a license to an applicant who has:


Created a reasonable probability of damage or injury to a person by making one or more material misrepresentations or false promises in a matter related to professional real estate activity.


Represented, attempted to represent or accepted compensation from a principal real estate broker other than the principal real estate broker with whom the real estate broker is associated.


Disregarded or violated any provision of ORS 659A.421 (Discrimination in selling, renting or leasing real property prohibited), 696.010 (Definitions) to 696.495 (Revolving fund), 696.600 (Definitions for ORS 696) to 696.785 (Commissioner duties when illegal commingling of funds found), 696.800 (Definitions) to 696.870 (Duties of real estate licensee under ORS 105) and 696.890 (Duties of real estate property managers) or any rule of the Real Estate Agency.


Knowingly or recklessly published materially misleading or untruthful advertising.


Acted as an agent and an undisclosed principal in any transaction.


Intentionally interfered with the contractual relations of others concerning real estate or professional real estate activity.


Intentionally interfered with the exclusive representation or exclusive brokerage relationship of another real estate licensee.


Accepted employment or compensation for the preparation of a competitive market analysis or letter opinion that is contingent upon reporting a predetermined value or for real estate in which the real estate licensee had an undisclosed interest.


Represented a taxpayer as described in ORS 305.239 (Qualifications of persons representing taxpayer) or 309.100 (Petitions for reduction of property value), contingent upon reporting a predetermined value or for real estate in which the real estate licensee had an undisclosed interest.


Failed to ensure, in any real estate transaction in which the real estate licensee performed the closing, that the buyer and seller received a complete detailed closing statement showing the amount and purpose of all receipts, adjustments and disbursements.


Has been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor substantially related to the real estate licensee’s trustworthiness or competence to engage in professional real estate activity.


Demonstrated incompetence or untrustworthiness in performing any act for which the real estate licensee is required to hold a license.


Violated a term, condition, restriction or limitation contained in an order issued by the commissioner.


Committed an act of fraud or engaged in dishonest conduct substantially related to the fitness of the applicant or real estate licensee to conduct professional real estate activity, without regard to whether the act or conduct occurred in the course of professional real estate activity.


Engaged in any conduct that is below the standard of care for the practice of professional real estate activity in Oregon as established by the community of individuals engaged in the practice of professional real estate activity in Oregon. [1975 c.746 §23 (enacted in lieu of 696.300); 1977 c.649 §41; 1981 c.617 §14; 1989 c.532 §8; 1991 c.5 §41; 1993 c.547 §9; 1993 c.570 §13; 1999 c.470 §2; 2001 c.300 §28; 2003 c.398 §10a; 2005 c.116 §22; 2005 c.393 §3; 2007 c.319 §10; 2007 c.337 §6; 2017 c.234 §20]

See also annotations under ORS 696.300 in permanent edition.

Notes of Decisions

Under former similar statute (ORS 696.300)

Breach of legally enforceable agreement by real estate broker is not requisite to finding of “bad faith,” “untrustworthiness” and “improper dealing” which include breach of moral obligation or duty owed to another. Blank v. Black, 14 Or App 470, 512 P2d 1016 (1973), Sup Ct review denied

Additional violations similar to violation charged were admissible in administrative hearing under this section to show that violation charged was deliberate. Flagg v. Layman, 16 Or App 129, 517 P2d 329 (1973)

Conduct demonstrating untrustworthiness is limited to acts by licensee in his capacity as broker or salesman, excepting where licensee is acting for himself in private capacity or he has been convicted of certain enumerated crimes. Klein v. Real Estate Commr. Holbrook, 19 Or App 646, 528 P2d 1355 (1974)

Realtor purchasing property for himself was obligated to advise seller that realtor had changed the terms of the option prepared by seller’s counsel by eliminating 10-year provision for realtor to pay the balance of contract. Macdonald v. Dormaier, 272 Or 122, 535 P2d 527 (1975)

In general

“Guilty knowledge” of a violation of this section on the part of the broker must be proved to find a violation. Vincent v. Real Estate Div., 24 Or App 913, 548 P2d 180 (1976)

Prohibition against conduct of same or different character that demonstrates “bad faith, incompetency or untrustworthiness or dishonest, fraudulent or improper dealing” is not unconstitutionally vague. Stanfill v. Real Estate Division, 35 Or App 549, 581 P2d 980 (1978), Sup Ct review denied

Evidence that real estate broker failed to disclose, and instructed another person not to disclose, that repairs, on which consummation of sale was contingent, had not been made, was sufficient to show bad faith and improper dealing in violation of this section. Stanfill v. Real Estate Division, 35 Or App 549, 581 P2d 980 (1978), Sup Ct review denied

Real Estate Commissioner erred in concluding same conduct by real estate licensee violated different subsections of this section. Pratt v. Real Estate Division, 76 Or App 483, 709 P2d 1134 (1985)

“Improper dealings” is not limited to actions taken with culpable mental state. Garton v. Real Estate Commissioner, 127 Or App 340, 873 P2d 359 (1994), Sup Ct review denied

Authority of Real Estate Commissioner to discipline licensee who “has done” any of listed acts does not allow discipline based on potential future actions. Dearborn v. Real Estate Agency, 334 Or 493, 53 P3d 436 (2002)

Act or conduct of same or different character as listed actions must be substantially related to trustworthiness, competence, honesty or good faith to engage in real estate activity. Dearborn v. Real Estate Agency, 334 Or 493, 53 P3d 436 (2002)

Under pre-2003 version of statute, Real Estate Commissioner may suspend, revoke or deny license for act or conduct substantially related to fitness of licensee, notwithstanding that act or conduct occurred before issuance of license. Kerley v. Real Estate Agency, 337 Or 309, 96 P3d 1211 (2004)


In general

Advertisement by real estate salesperson as member of “Million Dollar Club,” (1979) Vol 39, p 511


Last accessed
May 30, 2023