GRAR Member Update
Saturday, March 28, 2020
NYSAR FAQ's
Updated Friday, March 27, 5pm
NYSAR
NYSAR has released some updated and clarified information regarding a few of the frequently asked questions related to business during COVID-19. Visit the NYSAR Coronavirus Resource page to view the full list of FAQ's.
 
This FAQ is effective as of 5:00pm on 3/27/2020 and supersedes any prior information provided by NYSAR.
The following FAQ's were updated:
Q - Are closings permitted?
A -  Although virtual closings are allowed under the Governors mandate, NYSAR is unable to provide guidance as to whether in-person purchase and sale closings are allowable. NYSAR has been made aware that some attorneys representing buyers and sellers have been denied being deemed an essential service. In the case of one attorney, the response from ESD stated, “Based on a review of your request, your stated business location does not serve an essential function. As such, your business is subject to the required 100% workforce reduction pursuant to revised Executive Order 202.6.  

NYSAR has also been made aware that lenders are advising attorneys that represent the lender that their services are essential based on the lenders interpretation of the guidance document issued by the Governor as well as guidance issued by the ESD. According to the guidance document, “Law firms and other providers of legal services are essential businesses only to the extent that their services are currently needed to support the essential functions of health care providers, utilities, state and local governments, the federal government, financial institutions , businesses that have been designated as essential; or to support criminal defendants in court proceedings or individuals in emergency family court proceedings; or to participate in proceedings concerning the imminent release or detention of individuals subject to criminal or civil detention under any applicable provision of state or federal law, or proceedings to address emergency risks to health, safety, or welfare.”

It should be noted that remote notarization is now permissible under the Governor’s Executive Order 202.7 and closings may be conducted virtually. It is the decision of the lender, sellers attorney and buyers attorney as to whether a virtual closing and/or remote notarization or other methods are used to avoid person to person contact. NYSAR will email members when we receive further guidance on this matter.


Q - I am a single employee business; may I continue to perform licensed activities under the Governor’s mandate?
A - No. The “single occupant/employee” exemption was removed from the guidance document.


Q - How do I file a complaint against a broker or licensee that is violating the Governor’s Executive Order?
A: NYSAR has been contacted by its members inquiring how they can file a complaint if an individual licensee or brokerage are violating the Executive Order by continuing to perform licensed activities such as showings, open houses and other activities where they are involved in person-to-person contact. Licensees wishing to make such a complaint have three options set forth below:
  1. File a complaint with the Attorney General. The Attorney General has not provided a complaint form specific to the Executive Order. The Attorney General has provided a phone number and can be reached at (800) 771-7755 or you can contact the NYS COVID-19 hotline at (888) 364-3065.
  2. File a complaint with the Department of State. The complaint form for DOS can be found here: https://www.dos.ny.gov/licensing/complaint_links.html
  3. File a complaint pursuant to the NAR Code of Ethics if the licensee is a member of the REALTOR® organization. Complaints may be made against the licensee in the local REALTOR® board/association where such individual holds primary membership, secondary membership or participates in the local REALTOR® board/association owned or operated MLS. Complaints may only be made against individuals not against firms/brokerages. REALTOR® membership is held individually. The complainant could name the principal broker as well as the individual licensed with the broker. (GRAR File a Complaint)

Penalties for those found to have violated the Executive Order may include one or more of the following: $2,000 fine, charged with a criminal misdemeanor, suspension or revocation of license, fines or other discipline as authorized if the REALTOR® is found in violation of one or more articles by a hearing panel under the Code of Ethics and Arbitration Manual.
Matrix Banner
The New York State Alliance of MLS's has posted the following banner (in red) on Matrix. Please read the banner each time you log in to Matrix as it will be updated if/when restrictions change in areas covered by the Alliance. It currently reads:
"UNTIL RESTRICTIONS ARE LIFTED BY GOV. CUOMO, AGENTS ARE ADVISED TO NOT CONDUCT OR FACILITATE IN-PERSON SHOWINGS OR IN-PERSON OPEN HOUSES. VIRTUAL OPEN HOUSES AND VIRTUAL SHOWINGS ARE PERMISSIBLE.

WE ARE EXPERIENCING A UNIQUE ENVIRONMENT. OUR ULTIMATE CONCERN IS YOUR SAFETY WHILE BALANCING YOUR NEEDS. WE WILL CONTINUE TO KEEP YOU INFORMED OF MANDATED CHANGES IN THESE FLUID TIMES.

**ONONDAGA COUNTY MAY HAVE MORE SEVERE RESTRICTIONS ON SOCIAL GATHERING, PLEASE VISIT http://www.ongov.net/health/coronavirus.html FOR MORE DETAILS**"
March 27 Video Message from GRAR President
Friday, March 27 update from GRAR President Andy Kachaylo.
Please forgive the transposition of ESD. He's working hard during this time of not working.
From Yesterday's Update
Continuing Education Courses Online
Happy smiling asian woman working on laptop computer while sitting on the floor with legs crossed and pointing finger away isolated over gray background
If you're in need of CE during this time, we recommend taking online classes from one of GRAR's two online partner schools. Click logos to get to the GRAR page for each school.
NYSAR is also offering GRI courses via live webinar for just $25 per class. The first class is GRI-7 Property. It is being held Monday, April 6 through Wednesday, April 8 for 2.5 hours each day.
To participate, you must use a device with a camera and microphone. Registrants must also download the course manual in advance and have it available on a separate screen for use during class. Registrants should view a short tutorial prior to the start of class and sign in at least 15 minutes before the first session begins. In order to earn credit, licensees must participate in the full 7.5 hours of each course.   

Class size will be limited to 20 registrants on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional classes may be added based on member demand. 
You can access the latest NYSAR education schedule available at NYSAR.com . Call 1-800-239-4432 x219 with any questions regarding registration or upcoming course selections.
NEXT WEEK!
Watch for a special edition newsletter from GRAR on non-CE online tutorials and classes being offered by many of our tools vendors.
GRAR will be sending updates each weekday until further notice.

Please visit the GRAR Coronavirus page for all updates, other related information, and links to NAR, NYSAR, and the New York State Coronavirus pages.
Also, please join the GRAR Members Only Facebook Group to get updates from GRAR as well as view and participate in discussions. GRAR Members Only Facebook Group .
Andy Kachaylo,
GRAR President
Jim Yockel,
GRAR CEO
Greater Rochester Association of REALTORS® | grar.org