Real Estate Law 101: Fiduciary duty and dual agency
What are the obligations of a buyer’s agent when two of their buyers decide to put purchase offers on the same property? What duties does an agent owe to each party in a real estate transaction if they are simultaneously representing both the buyer and seller in a single sale? What happens when an agent is both operating in a dual capacity AND either acting as the buyer or seller of the property? What if they take a dual role as both real estate agent and loan officer for the buyer in the same transaction?
Clearly, there are some sticky areas of law where these potential conflicts of interest are concerned. In this radio show, we examined:
- Recent cases involving dual agency: How have the courts ruled?
- How an agent can know when they owe a fiduciary duty and what that entails
- Under what circumstances an agent can breach their fiduciary duty
- When dual agency can work, and when it should be avoided
- Tips for agents representing buyers and sellers without opening themselves up to increased liability
Our Expert Panel
Francis "Trip" X. Riley, III
Partner and Vice Chair of the Litigation Department
Saul Ewing LLP
Trip Riley is a Partner and Vice Chairman of Saul Ewing’s 100-plus attorney Litigation Department, where he concentrates his practice in complex commercial litigation and business torts matters. Trip has authored and co-authored a number of articles on Sect. 8 & 9 RESPA, AfBAs, mark-ups/overcharges and class-action consumer fraud claims. Trip is a member of the American Bar Association’s Litigation Section, as well as its Business Torts and Corporate Counsel committees. He is also a member of the New Jersey State Bar Association and Pennsylvania Bar Association.
Brian was born in North Carolina, moved to Virginia with his family at an early age, and grew up in Hampton, Virginia. He attended Hampton High School until his senior year when he left school and enlisted in the United States Marine Corps.
During his four year enlistment, Brian served with distinction as an air traffic controller, obtained his private pilot's license, and returned to school to finish his education, achieving both an associate's degree and a bachelor's degree before the end of his enlistment.. Among other awards, Brian was a five-time rifle expert (high).
Brian was graduated with honors from Azusa Pacific College in 1979 with an Associates Degree. He was graduated with University High Honors from Southern Illinois University in 1981 with a Bachelor of Science, and from the T.C. Williams School of Law, University of Richmond, Virginia, with a Juris Doctor degree, in 1984.
He is admitted to practice before all Virginia state courts, including the Virginia Supreme Court, before the United States District Court, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, and the United States Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit. He is a member of the Virginia State Bar and an affiliate member of the Virginia Peninsula Association of Realtors.
Brian is married to the former Brenda Jean Nice. They have four children and reside in York County, Virginia.