If you are convicted of, or plead guilty or nolo contendere to, a felony or crime involving fraud, you have a legal duty to notify the Texas Real Estate Commission ("TREC" or the “Commission”) within 30 days. If you fail to properly notify TREC, it is a violation of the Texas Occupations Code §1101.652(a)(1) and may be cause for license suspension, revocation, or reprimand.
Recently a Texas Real Estate agent had his license suspended for violating the Texas Occupations Code when he failed to timely disclose a felony offense to TREC.
In September 2015, Ricardo Sergio Acosta pleaded nolo contendere to a third-degree felony offense of Driving While Intoxicated. He was sentenced to four years imprisonment. The Court suspended the sentence, and placed Acosta on community supervision for four years instead.
After the nolo contendere plea, Acosta did not disclose his DWI offense to TREC.
Acosta ultimately disclosed his DWI felony when he filed his application to renew his real estate license with TREC on January 27, 2016. Acosta's failure to timely notify TREC was found to be in violation of the Texas Occupations code and cause for suspension of his real estate license.
The Commission suspended Acosta's license for four years. TREC then fully probated the license suspension, meaning Acosta remains a Texas licensed real estate agent. During this four-year period, he must comply with the Order set out by TREC. His duties to maintain his license include notifying his broker of his probationary sales agent license status and the terms of the Commission's disciplinary Order, as well as complying with all terms and conditions in his criminal court case.
If in the four years his license suspension is probated Acosta violates any terms of the Commission's Order, his license will be immediately suspended. He was also ordered to pay an administrative penalty of $1,000.
Real Estate License at Risk
Acosta's real estate license, his livelihood, and his career are very much at risk. His failure to disclose to the Commission, which may have been an honest oversight, nearly cost him his real estate license for four years.
If you are under investigation by the Texas Real Estate Commission, we urge you to seek the advice of an experienced real estate license defense attorney.
For more information, please review The Do's and Don'ts of Appearing Before the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) and our FREE eBook When Your License is Under Attack: A Survival Guide for Texas Professionals