Revocation of a Florida Real Estate License Does Not Prohibit Reapplication for a New License
The Florida Real Estate Commission (the "FREC") and the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (the "DBPR") have taken the position that revocation of a license is permanent. At least one appellate court has ruled that the statute upon which FREC relies is unconstitutional.
Section 455.227(5), Florida Statutes, states that revocation of a license is permanent.In Sloban v. Florida Board of Pharmacy, 982 So.2d 26 (Fla. 1st DCA 2008), the appellate court found section 456.072(6), Florida Statutes (2006) unconstitutional. The text of the statute is identical to the current language in Section 455.227(5), Florida Statutes, which applies to Florida real estate licensees. Therefore, the statute upon which the FREC relies should also be unconstitutional.
The legislature intended that revoked licensees could reapply under certain circumstances.The Sloban court concluded that the legislature did not intend that revocation would forever disqualify a person from reapplying for a license. The court stated: "If the legislature intended that revocation would forever disqualify a person from reapplying for a license, it would not have included the second and third sentences [, which authorize the agency to promulgate rules for the reapplication of previously revoked licensees]."
Section 475.17(1)(a), Florida Statutes, authorizes the FREC to approve the applications of previously revoked licensees.Section 475.17(1)(a), Florida Statutes, states that the FREC may approve the application of a previously revoked licensee if "because of lapse of time and subsequent good conduct and reputation, or other reason deemed sufficient, it appears to the commission that the interest of the public and investors will not likely be endangered[.]"
Reapplication is not prohibited.While reapplication for a new license by a previously revoked licensee is not prohibited and has become more frequent, the FREC's policy is that it does not have the authority to license previously revoked licensees. To date, there has been no challenge to the FREC's policy in a court of law.