We all make mistakes. Occasionally, in our reckless pasts, some of us engage in some sort of behavior that brings us to the attention of law enforcement. This may lead to arrest and conviction for a crime. Our society, for the most part, understands that people are fallible, and leaves room for us to make changes in our lives for the better.
The Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) is no different in this respect. It is possible to apply for a Real Estate License in Texas when you’ve had a criminal conviction.
That said, this concept of social understanding only goes so far. The Commission allows for dark spots on a person’s record to a point—but there are exceptions. The Commission’s Rule 541.1 lays out elements and factors that will be taken into consideration, such as:
- The applicant’s work and conduct before the crime was committed;
- How the crime of which the applicant was convicted relates to their ability to perform the duties of a real estate agent;
- The nature and seriousness of the crime of which the applicant was convicted;
- The age of the applicant at which the crime was committed;
- How long ago the conviction occurred;
- The applicant’s record of compliance with the terms and conditions ordered by the court;
- Evidence of the applicant’s rehabilitation; and
- Letters of recommendation that indicate the applicant’s present level of fitness to be trusted with professional practice.
Moreover, the Commission has drafted the Fitness Determination Form, which a potential applicant can submit before applying for licensure. This form asks the Commission to determine up front whether the individual’s previous conviction and other behavior meets the standards for integrity, trustworthiness, and honesty.
It’s important to be completely honest with the Commission. After all, before an applicant is granted a license, their fingerprints will be run with the Department of Justice, according to FBI standards. Any discrepancy in what the applicant has reported and what the fingerprint database returns will be reason enough for the Commission to deny licensure.
Meanwhile, once you’ve passed muster and earned your Real Estate license, if it comes under fire by the Commission for an allegation or some sort of conviction—or any other supposed violation of the standards of practice—you should contact a professional license attorney immediately. BERTOLINO LLP can help. We are experienced license defense attorneys and we know how to navigate the complaint process before the Texas Real Estate Commission.
We are skilled at assisting real estate professionals in determining the course of action that will be beneficial or detrimental to your career depending on the particular allegations. Immediately consulting an experienced license defense attorney to review allegations of misconduct helps ensure the most favorable outcome in your case.
With offices in Austin, Houston, and San Antonio, we serve medical professional clients all over the state. Contact us today or call (512) 476-5757 and schedule a free case evaluation.