Once you have taken your real estate agent exams, the Department of Real Estate requires you to submit an application to the board to obtain your professional license. As part of that process, you must also undergo an extensive background check. The DRE is looking for anything that would put the integrity and safety of the industry and board at risk. For many real estate hopefuls, this is the most stressful part of obtaining their real estate licenses. They fear mistakes from their past will resurface and block their future in real estate. Fortunately, past mistakes may not actually disqualify you from becoming a real estate agent. Here’s how you can obtain your real estate license even when you have a record.
Understanding DRE Background Checks
When the DRE runs a background check on applicants, they are looking for criminal convictions that are “substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of a real estate licensee” (Business and Professions Code). Although the board will look at everything on your record, small issues that you’ve already rehabilitated from may not actually be a problem for your career. The DRE takes into account the convictions that are most relevant to your job and the real estate industry.
The board will also look at any sexual misconduct you have on your record. According to the DRE, these could be any crimes involving sexually related conduct affecting a person who is an observer or non-consenting participant in the conduct or convictions which require registration per Section 290 of the Penal Code. These issues could lead to an application denial and could disqualify you from being a real estate agent.
Related Article: SB-384 Makes Revolutionary Changes to California Sex Offender Registration
Appealing Your Application Denial
Although the DRE is looking for job-related crimes, it’s still important to disclose all of this information upfront. Applicants who fail to disclose criminal history are very likely to be denied. As a member of the real estate industry, your professional and personal honesty and integrity always matter. If you try to start your career off by hiding the truth, it won’t end well. The DRE will find out and it could ruin your chances of ever obtaining your real estate agent license.
In the event that the DRE finds something on your record and denies your license, you still have 60 days to appeal their decision. This appeal process allows you to request a hearing with the board and argue your case. At this point, you’ll want the guidance of a professional license defense lawyer. License defense attorneys have extensive experience facing the DRE and know how to appeal your denial. Not only will they help clarify what can disqualify you from being a real estate agent, they’ll help you gather all of your paperwork and even clean up your rap sheet if necessary.
Contact Unlock Legal
Was your real estate license denied? Or do you fear that your past will influence the future of your career? Contact us immediately.
The most common reason for a license denial is a criminal conviction.
At Unlock Legal, we have decades of experience helping real estate agents like you obtain their licenses and overcome their past mistakes. We can help unlock your real estate career.
Unlock Legal provides focused representation in criminal defense and defense for California licensed professionals. Contact Unlock Legal today or give us a call at 949-268-2857 to speak with a professional about your case and your unique needs. You’ll find we are compassionate, easy to talk to, and willing to help in any capacity we can.