Press Release

Statement by Real Estate Board of New York President James Whelan Regarding the Revocation or Suspension of Real Estate Licenses for Discrimination


July 23, 2020

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NEW YORK, NY – New York State today passed S6874A/A8903-A, which grants the New York State Department of State greater authority to punish real estate licensees for violations of the New York State Human Rights Law. Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) President James Whelan issued the following statement on the passing of this legislation:

“All New Yorkers must have equal access and opportunity when searching for housing or commercial real estate. This bill is an important step in fighting discrimination and disparate treatment which people of diverse backgrounds may experience because of a small fraction of individuals within the industry who flout the law.”

S6874A/A8903-A amends Section 441-c of the Real Property Law by giving the New York State Department of State the discretion to fine, suspend or revoke the license of a real estate broker or salesperson who commits a violation of Article 15 of the New York State Executive Law, known as the Human Rights Law, in his or her capacity as a real estate broker or salesperson. The Bill is effective immediately. The Bill can be found by clicking here.

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The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) is the City’s leading real estate trade association. Founded in 1896, REBNY represents commercial, residential, and institutional property owners, builders, managers, investors, brokers, and salespeople; banks, financial service companies, utilities, attorneys, architects, and contractors; corporations, co-partnerships, and individuals professionally interested in New York City real estate. REBNY conducts research on various civic matters including tax policy, city planning and zoning, rental conditions, land use policy, building codes, and other city, state, and federal legislation. REBNY regularly publishes market data, policy reports, and broker surveys. In addition, REBNY provides for its members: informational, technical, and technological resources; networking and charitable service opportunities; qualifying and continuing education courses; professional education programs, seminars, and designations; career-changing awards; legal advice; and a wide range of additional member benefits. For more information, please visit