Applicants: Application Automatically Denied Due to Criminal Record?
As is set forth by the California Department of Real Estate (DRE), DRE may deny the issuance of a license to an applicant if he or she has been convicted of a substantially related crime. The same applies to the issuance of a license to a corporation, if an officer, director, or person owning or controlling 10 percent or more of the corporation’s stock has been convicted of a substantially related crime.
DRE uses Criteria of Substantial Relationship to determine if a crime is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, and duties of a real estate licensee. As part of the DRE’s background investigation of applicants, the Bureau reviews all applicants’ criminal histories and determines if the applicant has committed any substantially related crime(s) which would serve as a basis for denial of the license. Additionally, pursuant to Section 485 of the Business and Professions Code, DRE may deny an application for a license without first filing a Statement of Issues. However, when this occurs the applicant has 60 days from the date of the denial to request a hearing to contest the bureau’s denial.
Please note that because of Constitutional rights relating to due process, the Real Estate Commissioner cannot deny the issuance of a license to an applicant who has only been arrested and/or charged – via an indictment, arraignment, or similar charging procedure (even if those charges are still pending at the time of application) — with a crime. Pursuant to Business and Professions Code section 10177(b), only criminal convictions that are final, meaning the time for appeal has lapsed or the conviction has been affirmed on appeal, can be used as a basis for license denial or license disciplinary action.
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