Leasing commission

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Leasing commission

I have pre-leased 84 apartments for August 1st move-ins. I have been offered

another job out of state and will be moving before August 1st. I’m wondering

if I have a right to my commission? Someone in the company said they would not pay out because I’m leaving and they haven’t moved in, but I have signed

leases contracts.

Asked on May 30, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The law does not answer this question. Rather it is a contractual question--it depends on the terms of the commission agreement or understanding as to commissions between you and your employer. It would be legal for you to be paid them, even if you quit or relocate before being paid; it would also be legal to require employees to be still be employed when commissions or paid or for a certain period of time to receive commissions.
If you have a written commission agreement, look to its terms. If there is no written agreement, was there an oral (often incorrectly called "verbal") agreement? If no expicit agreement, either written or oral, what has this company done in the past--its past practice can be used to identify the understanding or agreement under which you worked. If no useful past practice as a guide, then look to industry norms--what is generally done in your state in this profession? That can inform the agreement or understanding. The point is, you have to identify what the understanding was under which you worked--that is what a court would enforce, if push came to shove and you filed a legal action (i.e. sued for the money you believe due you). In order, courts look to written agreements, oral agreements, this company's practices, and industry practice to understand the agreement or terms.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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