By Joseph Autilio
Executive Director, Massachusetts Board of Registration of Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons
Answers to agents’ questions regarding real estate licensing in Massachusetts.
Q. Why can it take several weeks to get my renewed license back?
A. The Board, along with the other licensing Boards in the Division of Professional Licensure (DPL), is part of a larger contract with another state agency that prints licenses for the Board. There are other state licensing agencies outside of DPL which are part of the contract. The state agency that prints licenses for the Board has developed a printing schedule to accommodate the varied and different needs of the agencies.
Not all licensing agencies renew their licenses at the same time. Your Board is a birthday Board, meaning that a license must be renewed by the agent’s birthday every two years. Other licensing agencies renew, depending on
the length of their licensing term, at a definite time and that will vary from agency to agency depending on the relevant law.
While the Board would like the printing of renewed licenses to occur daily, that is not possible at this juncture, though the Board continues to advocate the exploration of alternatives to accelerate the printing. It currently takes roughly four weeks for a printed renewed license to be received by the agent.
To cope with this situation the database of licensees renewing sends out renewal applications roughly 40 days prior to the scheduled expiration of a particular license to give licensees time to send in their license renewal application with the payment and get the printed renewed license back. Naturally,when a licensee returns their renewal application close to the expiration of the license, that is when they are most concerned about
getting their renewed license back. Unfortunately, there is little that the Board can do but to send out the license renewal applications well in advance of the expiration of the license.
You should also keep in mind that once your license renewal application is received, and payment is cleared through your bank account, your license is updated to a current status even though you are waiting for the return of the renewed license. The updating of your license to a current status is reflected on the official database of the Board which is also available on the web. You should feel free to direct inquiries to the web so confirmation of your current licensure status can be easily obtained.
Q. Does the Board ever file a complaint against an agent?
A. Absolutely. While most complaints come from aggrieved consumers, the Board also opens complaints for violations of the relevant law. In addition, if following an investigation, the Board concludes that one or more
provisions of the relevant law likely have been violated, it can initiate an adjudicatory (hearing) proceeding through the issuance of an Order to Show Cause. In such situations, it is the Board versus the licensee even though the original complainant was a consumer.