An ombudsman is an impartial member of the Texas REALTORS® Professional Standards Committee who helps parties resolve complaints and problems through constructive communication between parties. Ombudsmen do not determine whether ethics violations have occurred or who is owed money; rather they anticipate, identify, and attempt to resolve misunderstandings and disagreements before matters ripen into possible charges of unethical conduct or arbitration (generally commission) disputes.
An ombudsman can help resolve issues related to:
- Transactional, technical, procedural questions
- Lack of communication
- Potential violations of Code of Ethics
- Monetary disputes.
After your initial request to speak with an ombudsman, you (the complainant) will receive a call within 48 hours. The ombudsman will identify himself or herself and detail the rest of the process.
The use of the Ombudsman Program is voluntary and confidential. The Ombudsman Program averages a 50% success rate and can be a shorter process compared to filing an ethics complaint or arbitration request, which average six months. If the Ombudsman Program is successful, it can eliminate the need to file an official complaint.