Can You Get a Louisiana Real Estate License with Violations such as Felony, DUI or Misdemeanor?
Certain convictions can lead to a denial of your Louisiana real estate license, so it’s best to know whether it’s possible to get a license as soon as you can.
Luckily, the Louisiana Real Estate Commission (LREC) provides an opportunity for you to investigate early whether a felony, misdemeanor, or DUI will affect eligibility.
Keep reading to learn more about how criminal history affects the Louisiana real estate licensing process.
Should I Pass a Background Check for a Louisiana Real Estate License?
Louisiana does require anyone interested in getting a real estate license to complete a background check.
The first step in the process is getting your fingerprints, which is done through Clearbox, but you can’t schedule an appointment until after you’ve passed both portions of the licensing exam.
The fee for fingerprints is $49, but the results remain good for an entire year after the final report is issued.
Can You Get a Real Estate License with a Felony in Louisiana?
Even if you have a felony conviction in Louisiana, it is still possible to get your real estate license. However, there are extra steps you’ll need to take.
Once this form is submitted, the LREC takes several factors into consideration to make a decision, including:
- Nature and seriousness of offense
- Nature of specific duties and responsibilities for which the license is required
- Amount of time since conviction
- Facts relevant to the circumstances of the offense
- Evidence of rehabilitation or treatment
During the review process, you may get asked to appear at a hearing at the LREC, so they can obtain more information.
Can You Get a Real Estate License with a Misdemeanor in Louisiana?
The process for addressing a misdemeanor in Louisiana is the same as a felony.
You can still potentially get a real estate license if you have a misdemeanor on your record, but you must preemptively submit a Felony Applicant Form to LREC.
The review process with the LREC is the same, and the same factors are considered while your request is under review.
Can You Get a Real Estate License with a DUI in Louisiana?
A DUI won’t prevent you from getting a real estate license in Louisiana, but as with other convictions, it must go under review.
You can get a real estate license if you have a DUI in most cases as long as you complete the Felony Applicant Form and submit it to LREC.
From there, the LREC will make a ruling on whether you’re eligible for licensure, and you can proceed with the licensing process.
Tips for Applying for a Louisiana Real Estate License with Criminal Record or Misdemeanor
It’s best to get out in front of your criminal background should you have a prior conviction. The LREC makes this easy by providing an opportunity to have your record go under review.
Before you complete your pre-licensing coursework for your license, or fill out an application, you can submit, in writing, a request for review.
During this process the LREC determines if your criminal background may disqualify you from getting your real estate license. The ruling isn’t 100 percent definite.
It takes up to 45 days from the time the LREC receives your written request and any supporting documentation to deliver their ruling.
You’ll receive a written Notice of Intent to approve or deny your license eligibility at that time.
Taking advantage of this process can not only save you time, but it can make the licensing process easier for you.
It also provides you with a chance to approach the process with full transparency, which demonstrates a higher caliber of character that can only help you.
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Can I Appeal the Commission’s Negative Decision?
Should you receive a Notice of Intent to Deny during your initial review process, you have two options for action.
First, you can ask for a review extension, getting 60 additional days to provide extra evidence to the LREC.
These materials are considered for a final eligibility determination, but must be different materials directly related to the specific conviction serving as the basis for denial.
Your other option is to request a formal hearing.
This is where you appear in the LREC offices and provide testimony, along with additional evidence, to support your eligibility for licensure.
Can a Real Estate License Be Suspended or Revoked Because of a Violation Committed After Receiving It?
License disqualification is a definite possibility for Louisiana real estate agents if certain citations are made, but the LREC often goes first to violations with a fine.
The fine schedule provides for up to three violations for certain citations.
- First violation fines can be anywhere between $150-$325
- Second violation fines can be anywhere between $300-$575
- Third violation fines can be anywhere between $600-$1,575
Additionally, the LREC can censure, suspend, or revoke your license for a variety of violations connected to the Louisiana Real Estate Law. These include, but aren’t limited to:
- Violating any rule of regulation the LREC deems in the interest of the public as it relates to them
- Committing an act in violation of the Louisiana Timesharing Act
- Failing to account for money belonging to others
- Failing to properly disburse money belonging to others
- Commingling money or property of others with your own
- Accepting, giving, or charging any undisclosed commission, rebate, or direct profit
You can see a full list of violations that may potentially lead to a license suspension or revocation here.
Where to Study for a Real Estate License Exam?
Once you feel confident your real estate license application will not get denied, you can begin the process of getting your license.
A big part of this process is preparing to take the real estate license exam, which means setting aside a lot of time to study.
To begin studying, you’ll need to collect the right materials. The best place to start is with your notes from your pre-licensing education course.
In Louisiana, you must complete 90 hours of pre-licensing education if you’re getting a salesperson license, and 150 hours for a broker license.
You may take your course via online or in person in any of the accredited real estate agent schools in Louisiana.
Before you enroll, make sure the course format complements your learning style. Compare both options by reading our A-to-Z guide on real estate classes online vs. traditional classroom courses.
To add to your study materials, you can review a resource list within the Pearson VUE Candidate Handbook. Pearson VUE proctors the exam.
The handbook also includes an outline of the real estate license exam itself with details on what topics are covered.
You can also purchase an online practice test for the national portion of the real estate license exam for $19.95 to test your knowledge.
Additionally, we have tips that show how you can study for the real estate exam.
Combining these materials, and setting aside time to study independently, in a quiet place, can really help you dig into the content.
Creating topic outlines and flashcards are two great study tools as well.
You may also want to create a study group with peers from your pre-licensing classes to help you focus and make sure you’re covering everything for the exam.
Setting aside enough time to study, before scheduling the test, is the best way to prepare to pass the real estate licensing exam in Louisiana the first time around.
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On top of getting a background check and completing your pre-licensing course, another major requirement to be approved for a Louisiana real estate license is to have a sponsoring broker.
From our directory of top-rated real estate companies in Louisiana, you can find one to supervise you.
Not sure what to look for in a broker? Our article on how to choose the right real estate broker to work for is a good resource material.
Read our guide on all the requirements for getting a real estate license in Louisiana to make sure you don’t miss out on any other important steps in the licensing process.
We also have an article that provides estimated costs of getting a Louisiana real estate license, which can be helpful when you need to budget for licensing expenses.
Refer to our guide on how long to get a Louisiana real estate license to get an idea of how much time is needed to complete the licensing process.
When your license gets approved and activated, the following resources can be useful as you begin your journey as a licensed Louisiana real estate agent:
Starting this new career can be overwhelming, and you may be wondering what exactly happens when you get into the real estate profession.
We discuss the pros and cons of being a real estate agent in an article that features industry experts sharing what it’s like to be out there in the field.
Once you’re familiar with the ins and outs of the business, you can plan on taking more aggressive steps to steer your career in the right direction.
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About the Author
Kristina Morales is a REALTOR® with over 20 years of professional experience. She actively practices real estate in Ohio but also has practiced real estate in California and Texas. Conducting her real estate business in three states has allowed her to gain unique experiences that make her a well-rounded realtor. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Business Management and her MBA with a concentration in Banking and Finance. Prior to real estate, Kristina had an extensive corporate career in banking and treasury. She ended her finance career as an Assistant Treasurer at a publicly traded oil & gas company in Houston, TX.