May 2024

An informative e-newsletter for the Real Property Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan.

“Decoupling” Buyer Broker Compensation: The National Association of Realtors Settlement


By Brad Fisher, Scholten Fant, PC, Grand Haven, Michigan

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently entered a settlement resolving multiple Federal lawsuits challenging long-standing business practices and agent compensation. The crux of the dispute was the present requirement that listing agents or sellers make offers of buyer broker compensation a requirement of using the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). The plaintiffs alleged this resulted in a variety of anticompetitive practices, including inflated realtor commissions and price fixing.  In October, 2023, a jury agreed, and a judge awarded damages of at least $1.8 billion. Burnett et al v. National Association of Realtors et al., Case Nos. 1:19-cv01610 and 4: 19-cv-00332-SRB (W.D. Mo., 2019).

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Marketable Record Title Act “Sunset Date” Amendment


By Barry L. Brickner, Farmington Hills, MI

The Marketable Record Title Act, MCL 565.101 et seq. (“Act”), was adopted in 1945 to help simplify establishing “marketable title” to real property by limiting how far back a title search must go to establish an unbroken chain of title. Subject to certain exceptions in the Act, an owner has marketable title free of interests older than the 40-year search period (or older than a 20-year search period for mineral interests).

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RSVP Today

Construction Committee
Ask The Experts – Round 5
Design Build Issues
May 21, 2024 @ 4:30 p.m.

BACK AGAIN! Join us for Ask the Expert – Round 5, a mostly Social Event with shared insights from construction counsel and industry professionals, Matt Smith (Clark Hill) and Rich Hewlett (Varnum) on design build, design-assist, and design delegation issues. Guest commentary will be provided by Chuck Draper (Sr. VP, WTW). Grab some food, enjoy a beverage, and mix it up with your construction colleagues!

AGENDA – Socialize!

  • Welcome (Committee Co-chair, Aileen Leipprandt, Hilger Hammond) 
  • Discussion of design build and design assist and design delegation in Michigan 
    • Licensing 
    • Key Contract provisions 
    • Subcontractor/supplier specific issues 
    • Sample disputes 
    • Insurance issues – coverages that are available and recommended, and limitations of standard CGL policy 
  • Q&A / Open Forum – Ping the Panel with your questions and thoughts!
  • Socialize some more!

When: May 21, 2024, 4:30 p.m.
Where: The Chrisman Company 208 N. Capitol Ave, Lansing, MI 48933 
Cost: Nothing
ROI: Immeasurable

Please RSVP by Tuesday May 14, 2024, to Karen Schwartz at:

2024 Summer Conference
Grand Traverse Resort
July 17-19, 2024
Register TODAY and Book your Room!
Registration information 

Legislative Report

Join a Committee!

Take the opportunity to get involved by writing for one of our publications, presenting at a conference or seminar, or joining one of the committees that cover virtually every area in real estate law. See our committees and how you can join or see the committees you're already subscribed to.

Note to Committee Members:
Communication settings for RPLS Special Committee members have been changed to "Daily Digest." This means when a message is posted on your Committee page, you will receive the message the day after it is posted.

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Interested in writing an article for the e-Newsletter? Contact co-editors Samuel Kilberg at or Glen Zatz at

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We are also looking for suggested authors and topics for the Michigan Real Property Review. Please contact Chair-Elect, Mike Luberto at for suggested topics and ideas.

The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors, and they do not reflect in any way the positions of the State Bar of Michigan or the Real Property Law Section. These columns are meant for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) was not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by any person for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax-related penalties or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another person any transaction or matter addressed in this communication.