License Reciprocity

In 2004, legislation authorized the Pennsylvania State Real Estate Commission to enter into reciprocal licensing agreements with other states. Real estate licensees in these states can obtain a reciprocal license without additional education or testing requirements.

Pennsylvania licensees may not practice in another state without a reciprocal license until such time as the Commission signs an agreement with that state.

Under Act 58 of 2003, the Commission is required to publish states with which Pennsylvania has reciprocal agreements.

States with Reciprocal Agreements with PA

Overview of Act 58 of 2003

License reciprocity is an agreement between states to license non-resident real estate agents. Reciprocity agreements still require that a non-resident real estate agent acquire a license in the state that they wish to practice. However, most states waive some or all of the licensing requirements such as the licensing exam, pre-licensing educational requirements, and experience requirements for non-residents who are licensed in their state of residence.

In 1995, the National Association of Realtors® approved a motion supporting license reciprocity, as well as policy recommendations (five recommended elements of reciprocity). The most significant outcome of license reciprocity is the ease with which it will allow Realtors® to practice with more flexibility between states, leading not only to increased opportunities for Realtors®, but an easier real estate transaction.

  • Amends the Real Estate Licensing and Registration Act to provide that any nonresident who holds a current license issued by another state of the type that is issued under the Act may be issued a reciprocal license.
  • States that by obtaining a reciprocal license, licensees are subject to Pennsylvania laws, as well as rules and regulations.
  • States what material a person seeking a reciprocal license must submit to the Pennsylvania Real Estate Commission when requesting such a license.
  • Provides that the Commission may enter into written reciprocal agreements with other states.
  • Provides that reciprocal agreements will only be granted to those states who also “open doors” to Pennsylvania licensees.
  • Provides that the Commission must publish in The Pennsylvania Bulletin and make available both upon request and via the internet a list of those states with which the Commission has signed agreements and a summary of the terms of each agreement.
  • Requires an applicant for renewal of a reciprocal license to provide proof that the applicant continues to hold a license in the state where the applicant’s principal place of business is located.
  • Requires a reciprocal applicant to provide a certified copy of a current license issued by the state where the applicant’s principal place of business is located and a history of any discipline previously imposed on the applicant by that state. This certified information must come directly from the licensing body.
  • Provides that if a reciprocal licensee’s principal place of business becomes located in Pennsylvania, they become a standard licensee rather than a reciprocal licensee.
  • Provides that reciprocal licensees will be held to the same criteria as standard licensees except that they will not be eligible to be a member of the Commission, do not have to take continuing education, and do not have to retake the exam after being inactive for five years.
  • Provides that a reciprocal licensee must be affiliated with a broker who has either a standard or reciprocal license; also requires that a reciprocal license identify the broker with whom a reciprocal licensee is affiliated.
  • Provides that violating provisions of reciprocity is a prohibited act. Those licensees who have been disciplined in another state may also be held accountable to Pennsylvania laws.
  • Effective date: Feb. 28, 2004.