Notes from the Legal Hotline: Assistants

What tasks may an assistant perform in a real estate office?  The tasks that may be performed by an assistant in a real estate office is going to depend on whether the assistant is licensed or unlicensed. A licensed assistant may perform any tasks permitted of licensees in a real estate transaction, but an unlicensed assistant is much more limited in the tasks they may perform. Some examples of activities in which an unlicensed real estate assistant can engage in are:

  • General administrative tasks, such as answering the phones and sending mailers
  • Placing signs on listed properties
  • Scheduling appointments for the licensee
  • Preparing open house materials

Unlicensed assistants should avoid tasks which place them in direct contact with clients or customers. Specifically, the following are some activities unlicensed assistants should avoid:

  • Providing specific details of a property
  • Discussing marketing strategies or home values
  • Hosting an open house or conducting showings
  • Negotiating the terms of a sale
  • Presenting offers

Engaging in any activities that go beyond the scope of an administrative task could violate Massachusetts licensing laws.


Written by: Justin Davidson, General Counsel; Catherine Taylor, Associate Counsel; and Jonathan Schreiber, Legislative & Regulatory Counsel.

Services provided through the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice, nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship. The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS®, by providing this service, assumes no actual or implied responsibility for any improper use of responses to questions through this service.  The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® will not be legally responsible for any potential misrepresentations or errors made by providing this service. For more information regarding these topics authorized callers should contact the MAR legal hotline at 800-370-5342 or e-mail at