David Saks: State of Tennessee Passes Fingerprinting Amendment

David Saks - Real Estate Broker - The Real Estate Mart of Tennessee, Inc. - 4040 North Watkins-Suite #4 - Memphis, Tennessee 38127 - Phone (901) 357-4663

State of Tennessee Passes Fingerprinting Amendment

State of TN Passes Fingerprinting Amendment

Governor Bill Haslam signed into law an amendment to the Tennessee Code relative to licensure that requires all applicants for initial licensure on or after January 1, 2014, submit a complete set of fingerprints.

The fingerprints will be used to obtain a criminal background check from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The Tennessee Real Estate Commission (TREC) will be enforcing this new law beginning

January 1.

Read Public Act 420.

David Saks

Time&Temp Memphis

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Comment balloon 51 commentsDavid Saks • June 07 2013 12:41PM


This has been required for all new licensees in Virginia since July 1, 2009.


Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) about 7 years ago

David, I hadn't actually heard this yet. My husband and I both had jobs where we were previously required to be finger-printed. I don't have a problem with this at all.

Posted by Tammie White, Broker, Franklin TN Homes for Sale (Franklin Homes Realty LLC) about 7 years ago

You would think that implementing this sooner was very prudent. ..

Posted by Fernando Herboso - Broker for Maxus Realty Group, 301-246-0001 Serving Maryland, DC and Northern VA (Maxus Realty Group - Broker 301-246-0001) about 7 years ago

I had mine done in CA over 30 years ago for my CA broker license...had to go to the Santa Rosa Police Dept - a real slice of life


Posted by Wallace S. Gibson, CPM, LandlordWhisperer (Gibson Management Group, Ltd.) about 7 years ago

Finger printing?  Uh oh!  Just kidding. Actually I think that it's a pretty good idea.

Posted by Tom White, Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN (Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.FranklinHomesRealty.com) about 7 years ago

Texas began requiring this a few years back, as well.

Posted by Sharon Parisi, Dallas Homes (United Real Estate Dallas ) about 7 years ago

Every state should do it, Lenn. There's too much deception and fraud in the business, especially on the lender's side of the fence.

Real Estate Crimes

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Ditto Tammie.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

It would have been prudent in 1999, Fernando.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Sound like your real estate commission put some protection in place for it's agents, Wallace.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

I think so, too, Tom.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Big state, lots of agents, Sharon, and a safety net for commerce and insurance.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

ood and prudent requirement.  This has been required in Cailornia for a long time

Posted by Mike Crosby, Placentia- Yorba Linda Real Estate - 714-742-2897 (Mike Crosby Realty) about 7 years ago

I think so, too, Mike.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

It's been required here in Kansas for as long as I have been a Realtor, all of 5 years....

Posted by Joel Weihe, Helping you to use your VA home loan benefits (Realty World Alliance) about 7 years ago

It's not required in Hawaii yet, but what a great idea. I'm definitely a believer.

Posted by Julie A. Black, CLHMS, CRS, GRI, Realtor, Broker (KAUAI DREAMS REALTY Kauai Real Property Specialist) about 7 years ago

Such a smart idea.  This all states should do this.


Posted by Ginger Harper, Your Southport~Oak Island Agent~Brunswick County! (Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage) about 7 years ago

I very rarely see a report or FBI press release of any mortgage or real estate fraud coming from Kansas, Joel.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

I agree, Julie. It'll slow down the population of repeat offenders, especially in the lenders circle. Unscrupulous investors and foreclosure bid riggers are a bad problem. They need to be fingerprinted and have background checks prior to being allowed to purchase property for flipping or resale because of the numerous fraud schemes that occur weekly in those sectors of the business.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

I agree, Ginger.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

David:  I think this has been a requirement in Texas for about four years now.  Honestly, I did not like it at first... and still consider it somewhat an invasion of privacy, although I surely do understand the reasoning for it.  It's just too bad it has to bee this way.  :)

Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) about 7 years ago

Fingerprints are required as condition of licensing in State of California. Thought all states did that, seems like a no brainer to me.

Posted by Pamela Seley, Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA (West Coast Realty Division) about 7 years ago

The legislation may appear intrusive to some, Karen, but I believe, as a whole, it will have a socially, if not statutorily, redeeming impact on our community. This simple requirement will ultimately create a better environment which strengthens the integrity of our profession. Compliance with the laws of the real estate commission go beyond the COE.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

It's a good idea, Pamela. Tennessee's not without fault in the fraud arena, as evidenced by this press release, but anything put into place to discourage, prevent and deter it is good.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Hopefully, someday, every state will adopt such a requirement.  Florida has been doing this for several years now.

Posted by S. Leanne Paynter ☼ Broward County, FL, Davie, Plantation, Cooper City & Weston Specialist (United Realty Group, Inc.) about 7 years ago

I hope so, too, Leanne. It protects us, not quite like a polio or smallpox vaccination, but still protects us.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago
That's interesting. I bet other states will follow the lead set by you!
Posted by Cheryl Ritchie, Southern Maryland 301-980-7566 (RE/MAX Leading Edge www.GoldenResults.com) about 7 years ago

We have had that here in California for some time now..Tks for sharing with us.

Posted by Ronald DiLalla, No. Orange Cty Real Estate (Century 21 Discovery DRE 01813824) about 7 years ago

Interesting -- we don't have such a requirement in New Hampshire.  I'm wondering how many states have this type of a requirement.

Posted by Joan Whitebook, Consumer Focused Real Estate Services (BHG The Masiello Group) about 7 years ago


Great news!  We are blessed to live in Tennessee, and this blessing may help keep a few criminal from thinking we are a bunch of dumb hicks ripe for the picking.  Uncle Sam has long required fingerprints to serve in the military, and Tennessee does require photo ID for voter registration, so fingerprinting is a step in the right direction.  REALTORS® should have nothing to fear and nothing to hide, and this helps assure the public that we are professionals following a code of ethics and abiding by the law.  Wonder what it would take for Washington DC to follow suit?


I appreciate your contributions to Active Rain.

Posted by Fred Cope, Looking For Homes With A Smile (Reliant Realty in Nashville, TN) about 7 years ago

I've been a California real estate agent for 31 years.  And, when I applied for my initial license needed to be fingerprinted as part of the process. 

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) about 7 years ago

That would probably be a great idea, Cheryl.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Maybe it'll strengthen the integrity of the profession, Ronald.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

It would be nice to know, Joan.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

There's something about the simple country pleasures of our state that makes it hard to do something loathsome, Fred. The Creator has something to do with it, I'm sure.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

I sincerely hope that your career has been successful, rewarding in many ways and very prosperous for you, Mryl.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Fred in #31:  I wonder if requiring your lawmakers to be fingerprinted would do anything to improve THEIR level of professionalism?  From some of the laws I have seen enacted in your various legislatures... I could only hope.

Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) about 7 years ago

Allowing gun permit holders to carry their weapons in saloons pushed the barricade to the curb, Karen. I'm opposed to both the Tennessee lottery and the casinos in north Mississippi.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

I think this is a great idea to remove criminals from the real estate industry.

Posted by Harry F. D'Elia III, Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR (RentVest) about 7 years ago

These blanket solutions to criminal activity need to be focused...I don't write bad checks, commit fraud, or swindle yet there are laws that I have to comply with to prevent this...At some point, how much law can govern a human being? We are not robots

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) about 7 years ago

David, this is common practice here in Virginia. Looks like TN is just catching up.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA about 7 years ago

I think Tennessee should have taken it a step further and done DNA Tests. Hell, maybe D.B. Cooper is a real estate agent in Tennessee somewhere!!!

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc.) about 7 years ago

That will never entirely happen, Harry. Here's the proof:

Real Estate Crimes

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

This is a show of good faith by government to deter criminal activity, Richie, and provide a measure of integrity for the profession. Real estate crimes aren't going to stop and offenders will continue to be prosecuted, but there will always remain the righteous in the profession to uphold it's unity, moral soundness and merit.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

A step in the right direction, Michael.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

A bit extreme, Norman. Thanks for the nice laugh :-)

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

We have had that in Florida for years. Also for my insurance license as well. They do it digitally now at a local Mailing store so now you do not have to go to the police station and wait in line!

Posted by Dick and Dixie Sells, Realtors, Tampa Bay Florida Homes For Sale (Sells Real Estate, LLC) about 7 years ago

D.S. rules

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) about 7 years ago

That's convenient, Dick and Dixie.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Perhaps one day, Erica, if it can strengthen the level of professionalism and prevent and discourage real estate crimes.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

Not I Richie, but thanks for making me blush.

Posted by David Saks ((retired)) about 7 years ago

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