Notes from the Legal Hotline: Rejection of Offers

Before we get to the question of the day, it is with a heavy heart for us but glad wishes for new opportunities, we wish MAR Legal guru Catherine Taylor goodbye today.  She has accepted an offer that was impossible to turn down. We thank her for guidance over the years, and for this last Legal Hotline update.  We are secure in knowing that Justin’s team is still strong with Kate and Jonny on the job to help us all!  So, on to the question of the week: Does a seller have to provide a formal rejection to a buyer’s offer?

No, sellers are not obligated by law to formally reject an offer. In the context of the MAR Contract to Purchase (Form 501), section 2 stipulates the timeframe within which the offer remains valid. Failure on the seller’s part to accept the offer within this designated timeframe results in a de facto rejection of the buyer’s offer. Although buyers have the option to request a formal rejection from sellers, there exists no legal requirement for sellers to comply with such requests.

In cases where the listing is a REALTOR®, the cooperating broker has the right to submit a written request to the listing broker, seeking confirmation that the offer was indeed presented to the seller, or alternatively, that the seller waived the obligation to review the offer. This obligation is outlined in Standard of Practice 1-7 in the REALTOR® Code of Ethics.