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Chapter 153 Rules Relating to Provisions of the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Act

§153.1 Definitions

  1. The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
    1. ACE–Appraiser Continuing Education.
    2. Act–The Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Act.
    3. Administrative Law Judge–A judge employed by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH).
    4. Analysis–The act or process of providing information, recommendations or conclusions on diversified problems in real estate other than estimating value.
    5. Applicant–A person seeking a certification, license, approval as an appraiser trainee, or registration as a temporary out-of-state appraiser from the Board.
    6. Appraisal practice–Valuation services performed by an individual acting as an appraiser, including but not limited to appraisal and appraisal review.
    7. Appraisal report–A report as defined by and prepared under the USPAP.
    8. Appraisal Standards Board–The Appraisal Standards Board (ASB) of the Appraisal Foundation, or its successor.
    9. Appraisal Subcommittee–The Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC) of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council or its successor.
    10. Appraiser Qualifications Board–The Appraiser Qualifications Board (AQB) of the Appraisal Foundation, or its successor.
    11. Appraiser trainee–A person approved by the Board to perform appraisals or appraiser services under the active, personal and diligent supervision and direction of the supervisory appraiser.
    12. Board–The Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board.
    13. Certified General Appraiser–A certified appraiser who is authorized to appraise all types of real property.
    14. Certified Residential Appraiser–A certified appraiser who is authorized to appraise one-to-four unit residential properties without regard to value or complexity.
    15. Classroom hour–Fifty minutes of actual classroom session time.
    16. Client–Any party for whom an appraiser performs an assignment.
    17. College–Junior or community college, senior college, university, or any other postsecondary educational institution established by the Texas Legislature, which is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools or like commissions of other regional accrediting associations, or is a candidate for such accreditation.
    18. Commissioner–The commissioner of the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board.
    19. Complainant–Any person who has made a written complaint to the Board against any person subject to the jurisdiction of the Board.
    20. Complex appraisal–An appraisal in which the property to be appraised, the form of ownership, market conditions, or any combination thereof are atypical.
    21. Continuing education cycle–the period in which a license holder must complete continuing education as required by the AQB.
    22. Council–The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) or its successor.
    23. Day–A calendar day unless clearly indicated otherwise.
    24. Distance education–Any educational process based on the geographical separation of student and instructor that provides a reciprocal environment where the student has verbal or written communication with an instructor.
    25. Feasibility analysis–A study of the cost-benefit relationship of an economic endeavor.
    26. Federal financial institution regulatory agency–The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Office of Thrift Supervision, the National Credit Union Administration, or the successors of any of those agencies.
    27. Federally related transaction–Any real estate-related transaction that requires the services of an appraiser and that is engaged in, contracted for, or regulated by a federal financial institution regulatory agency.
    28. Foundation–The Appraisal Foundation (TAF) or its successor.
    29. Fundamental real estate appraisal course–Those courses approved by the Appraiser Qualifications Board as qualifying education.
    30. Inactive certificate or license–A general certification, residential certification, or state license which has been placed on inactive status by the Board.
    31. License–The whole or a part of any Board permit, certificate, approval, registration or similar form of permission required by law.
    32. License holder–A person certified, licensed, approved, authorized or registered by the Board under the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Act.
    33. Licensed Residential Appraiser–A licensed appraiser who is authorized to appraise non-complex one-to-four residential units having a transaction value less than $1 million and complex one-to-four residential units having a transaction value less than $250,000.
    34. Licensing–Includes the Board processes respecting the granting, disapproval, denial, renewal, certification, revocation, suspension, annulment, withdrawal or amendment of a license.
    35. Market analysis–A study of market conditions for a specific type of property.
    36. Nonresidential real estate appraisal course–A course with emphasis on the appraisal of nonresidential real estate properties which include, but are not limited to, income capitalization, income property, commercial appraisal, rural appraisal, agricultural property appraisal, discounted cash flow analysis, subdivision analysis and valuation, or other courses specifically determined by the Board.
    37. Nonresidential property–A property which does not conform to the definition of residential property.
    38. Party–The Board and each person or other entity named or admitted as a party.
    39. Person–Any individual, partnership, corporation, or other legal entity.
    40. Personal property–Identifiable tangible objects and chattels that are considered by the general public as being "personal," for example, furnishings, artwork, antiques, gems and jewelry collectibles, machinery and equipment; all tangible property that is not classified as real estate.
    41. Petitioner–The person or other entity seeking an advisory ruling, the person petitioning for the adoption of a rule, or the party seeking affirmative relief in a proceeding before the Board.
    42. Pleading–A written document, submitted by a party or a person seeking to participate in a case as a party, that requests procedural or substantive relief, makes claims, alleges facts, makes a legal argument, or otherwise addresses matters involved in the case.
    43. Real estate–An identified parcel or tract of land, including improvements, if any.
    44. Real estate appraisal experience–Valuation services performed as an appraiser or appraiser trainee by the person claiming experience credit. Significant real property appraisal experience requires active participation; mere observation of another appraiser's work is not real estate appraisal experience.
    45. Real estate-related financial transaction–Any transaction involving: the sale, lease, purchase, investment in, or exchange of real property, including an interest in property or the financing of property; the financing of real property or an interest in real property; or the use of real property or an interest in real property as security for a loan or investment including a mortgage-backed security.
    46. Real property–The interests, benefits, and rights inherent in the ownership of real estate.
    47. Record–All notices, pleadings, motions and intermediate orders; questions and offers of proof; objections and rulings on them; any decision, opinion or report by the Board; and all staff memoranda submitted to or considered by the Board.
    48. Report–Any communication, written or oral, of an appraisal, review, or analysis; the document that is transmitted to the client upon completion of an assignment.
    49. Residential property–Property that consists of at least one but not more than four residential units.
    50. Respondent–Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the Board, licensed or unlicensed, against whom any complaint has been made.
    51. Supervisory Appraiser–A certified general or residential appraiser who is designated as a supervisory appraiser, as defined by the AQB, for an appraiser trainee. The supervisory appraiser is responsible for providing active, personal and diligent supervision and direction of the appraiser trainee.
    52. Trade Association–A nonprofit voluntary member association or organization:
      1. whose membership consists primarily of persons who are licensed as appraisers and pay membership dues to the association or organization;
      2. that is governed by a board of directors elected by the members; and
      3. that subscribes to a written code of professional conduct or ethics.
    53. USPAP–Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice adopted by the Appraisal Standards Board of the Appraisal Foundation.
    54. Workfile–Documentation necessary to support an appraiser's analysis, opinions, and conclusions, and in compliance with the record keeping provisions of USPAP.

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§153.3 The Board

  1. A quorum of the Board consists of five members.
  2. Meetings of the Board may be called by the chair on a motion by the chair or upon the written request of five members. Unless state law or Board rules require otherwise, meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Robert's Rules of Order.
  3. At the end of a term, members shall continue to serve until their successors are qualified.

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§153.5 Fees

  1. The Board shall charge and the Commissioner shall collect the following fees:
    1. a fee of $400 for an application for a certified general appraiser license;
    2. a fee of $350 for an application for a certified residential appraiser license;
    3. a fee of $325 for an application for a licensed residential appraiser license;
    4. a fee of $300 for an application for an appraiser trainee license;
    5. a fee of $360 for a timely renewal of a certified general appraiser license;
    6. a fee of $310 for a timely renewal of a certified residential appraiser license;
    7. a fee of $290 for a timely renewal of a licensed residential appraiser license;
    8. a fee of $250 for a timely renewal of an appraiser trainee license;
    9. a fee equal to 1-1/2 times the timely renewal fee for the late renewal of a license within 90 days of expiration;
    10. a fee equal to two times the timely renewal fee for the late renewal of a license more than 90 days but less than six months after expiration;
    11. a fee of $250 for nonresident license;
    12. the national registry fee in the amount charged by the Appraisal Subcommittee;
    13. an application fee for licensure by reciprocity in the same amount as the fee charged for a similar license issued to a Texas resident;
    14. a fee of $40 for preparing a certificate of licensure history, active licensure, or supervision;
    15. a fee of $20 for an addition or termination of sponsorship of an appraiser trainee;
    16. a fee of $20 for replacing a lost or destroyed license;
    17. a fee for a returned check equal to that charged for a returned check by the Texas Real Estate Commission;
    18. a fee of $200 for an extension of time to complete required continuing education;
    19. a fee of $25 to request a license be placed on inactive status;
    20. a fee of $50 to request a return to active status;
    21. a fee of $50 for evaluation of an applicant's moral character;
    22. an examination fee as provided in the Board's current examination administration agreement;
    23. a fee of $20 per certification when providing certified copies of documents;
    24. a fee of $75 to request a voluntary appraiser trainee experience review;
    25. the fee charged by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Texas Department of Public Safety or other authorized entity for fingerprinting or other service for a national or state criminal history check in connection with a license application or renewal;
    26. a fee of $20 for filing any application, renewal, change request, or other record on paper when the person may otherwise file electronically by accessing the Board's website and entering the required information online; and
    27. any fee required by the Department of Information Resources for establishing and maintaining online applications.
  2. Fees must be submitted in U.S. funds payable to the order of the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board. Fees are not refundable once an application has been accepted for filing. Persons who have submitted a check which has been returned, and who have not made good on that check within thirty days, for whatever reason, shall submit all future fees in the form of a cashier's check or money order.
  3. Licensing fees are waived for members of the Board staff who must maintain a license for employment with the Board only and are not also using the license for outside employment.

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§153.8 Scope of Practice

  1. License holders are bound by the USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraisal.
  2. Certified General Real Estate Appraisers may appraise all types of real property without regard to transaction value or complexity.
  3. Certified Residential Real Estate Appraisers:
    1. may appraise one-to-four residential units without regard to transaction value or complexity;
    2. may appraise vacant or unimproved land for which the highest and best use is for one-to-four family purposes;
    3. may not appraise subdivisions; and
    4. may associate with a state certified general real estate appraiser, who shall sign the appraisal report, to appraise non-residential properties.
  4. State Licensed Real Estate Appraisers:
    1. may appraise non-complex one-to-four residential units having a transaction value less than $1 million and complex one-to-four residential units having a transaction value less than $250,000;
    2. may appraise vacant or unimproved land for which the highest and best use is for one to four unit residential purposes;
    3. may not appraise subdivisions; and
    4. may associate with a state certified general real estate appraiser, who shall sign the appraisal report, to appraise non-residential properties.
  5. Appraiser Trainees may appraise those properties, under the active, personal and diligent supervision of their sponsoring appraiser, which the sponsoring appraiser is permitted to appraise.
  6. If an appraiser or appraiser trainee is a person with a disability (as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act or regulations promulgated thereunder), an unlicensed assistant may perform certain services normally requiring a license for or on behalf of the appraiser or appraiser trainee, provided that:
    1. the services performed by the assistant do not include appraisal analysis;
    2. the assistant only provides such services as would constitute a reasonable accommodation;
    3. the assistant is under the direct control of the appraiser or appraiser trainee;
    4. the appraiser or appraiser trainee is as close in physical proximity as is practical to the activity;
    5. the assistant is not represented as being or having the authority to act as an appraiser or appraiser trainee; and
    6. if the assistant provides significant assistance, the appraisal report includes the name of the assistant.

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§153.9 Applications

  1. A person desiring to be licensed as an appraiser or appraiser trainee shall file an application using forms prescribed by the Board or the Board's online application system, if available. The Board may decline to accept for filing an application that is materially incomplete or that is not accompanied by the appropriate fee. Except as provided by the Act, the Board may not grant a license to an applicant who has not:
    1. paid the required fees;
    2. submitted a complete and legible set of fingerprints as required in §153.12 of this title;
    3. satisfied any experience and education requirements established by the Act, Board rules, and the AQB;
    4. successfully completed any qualifying examination prescribed by the Board;
    5. provided all supporting documentation or information requested by the Board in connection with the application;
    6. satisfied all unresolved enforcement matters and requirements with the Board; and
    7. met any additional or superseding requirements established by the Appraisal Qualifications Board.
  2. Termination of application. An application is void and subject to no further evaluation or processing if within one year from the date an application is filed, an applicant fails to satisfy:
    1. a current education, experience or exam requirement; or
    2. the fingerprint and criminal history check requirements in §153.12 of this title.
  3. A license is valid for the term for which it is issued by the Board unless suspended or revoked for cause and unless revoked, may be renewed in accordance with the requirements of §153.17 of this title (relating to Renewal or Extension of Certification and License or Renewal of Trainee Approval).
  4. The Board may deny a license to an applicant who fails to satisfy the Board as to the applicant's honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity.
  5. The Board may deny a license to an applicant who submits incomplete, false, or misleading information on the application or supporting documentation.
  6. When an application is denied by the Board, no subsequent application will be accepted within two years after the date of the Board's notice of denial as required in §157.7 of this title.
  7. This subsection applies to an applicant who is a military service member, a military veteran, or the spouse of a person serving on active duty as a member of the armed forces of the United States.
    1. The Board shall waive the license application and examination fees for an applicant who is:
      1. a military service member or military veteran whose military service, training, or education substantially meets all of the requirements for the license; or
      2. a military service member, military veteran, or military spouse who holds a current license issued by another jurisdiction that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements for the license in this state.
    2. The Board shall issue on an expedited basis a license to an applicant who holds a current license issued by another state or jurisdiction that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements for the license issued in this state.
    3. The Board may reinstate a license previously held by an applicant , if the applicant satisfies the requirements in §153.16 of this chapter.
    4. The Board may allow an applicant to demonstrate competency by alternative methods in order to meet the requirements for obtaining a particular license issued by the Board. For purposes of this subsection, the standard method of demonstrating competency is the specific examination, education, and/or experience required to obtain a particular license.
    5. In lieu of the standard method(s) of demonstrating competency for a particular license and based on the applicant's circumstances, the alternative methods for demonstrating competency may include any combination of the following as determined by the Board:
      1. education;
      2. continuing education;
      3. examinations (written and/or practical);
      4. letters of good standing;
      5. letters of recommendation;
      6. work experience; or
      7. other methods required by the commissioner.
  8. This subsection applies to an applicant who is serving on active duty or is a veteran of the armed forces of the United States.
    1. The Board will credit any verifiable military service, training or education obtained by an applicant that is relevant to a license toward the requirements of a license.
    2. This subsection does not apply to an applicant who holds a restricted license issued by another jurisdiction.
    3. The applicant must pass the qualifying examination, if any, for the type of license sought.
    4. The Board will evaluate applications filed by an applicant who is serving on active duty or is a veteran of the armed forces of the United States consistent with the criteria adopted by the AQB and any exceptions to those criteria as authorized by the AQB.
  9. A person applying for license under subsection (g) or (h) of this section must also:
    1. submit the Board's approved application form for the type of license sought;
    2. pay the required fee for that application; and
    3. submit the supplemental form approved by the Board applicable to subsection (g) or (h) of this section.
  10. The commissioner may waive any prerequisite to obtaining a license for an applicant as allowed by the AQB.

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§153.10 Issuance of Certification, License, or Trainee Approval

  1. A license is issued when all requirements have been met and it is entered into the Board's database and a license number has been assigned.
  2. An applicant is not licensed and may not represent himself or herself as a certified or licensed appraiser, appraiser trainee, or registered temporary out-of-state appraiser until the license has been issued by the Board.
  3. A license issued by the Board is valid for two years from the date of issuance.
  4. A license issued to a temporary out-of-state appraiser is valid for six months from the date of issuance, unless otherwise determined by the Board.
  5. A license is not renewed until the renewal has been issued by the Board.

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§153.11 Examinations

  1. Administration of Licensing Examinations.
    1. An examination required for any license issued by the Board will be conducted by the testing service with which the Board has contracted for the administration of examinations.
      1. The testing service shall schedule and conduct the examinations in the manner required by the contract between the Board and the testing service.
      2. Examinations shall be administered at locations designated by the exam administrator.
      3. The testing service administering the examinations is required to provide reasonable accommodations for any applicant with a verifiable disability. Applicants must contact the testing service to arrange an accommodation. The testing service shall determine the method of examination, whether oral or written, based on the particular circumstances of each case.
    2. Each examination shall be consistent with the examination criteria and examination content outline of the AQB for the category of license sought. To become licensed, an applicant must achieve a passing score acceptable to the AQB on the examination.
    3. Successful completion of the examination is valid for a period of 24 months.
    4. An applicant who fails the examination three consecutive times may not apply for reexamination or submit a new license application unless the applicant submits evidence satisfactory to the Board that the applicant has completed 30 additional hours of core education after the date the applicant failed the examination for the third time.
  2. Examination Fees.
    1. The examination fee must be paid each time the examination is taken.
    2. An applicant who is registered for an examination and fails to attend shall forfeit the examination fee.
  3. Exam Admission.
    1. To be admitted to an examination, applicants must present the following documents:
      1. exam registration paperwork as required by the testing service under contract with the Board; and
      2. official photo-bearing personal identification.
    2. The testing service shall deny entrance to the examination to any person who cannot provide adequate identification.
    3. The testing service may refuse to admit an applicant who arrives after the time the examination is scheduled to begin or whose conduct or demeanor would be disruptive to other persons taking examinations at the testing location.
  4. Confidentiality of Examination.
    1. The testing service may confiscate examination materials, dismiss an applicant, and fail the applicant for violating or attempting to violate the confidentiality of the contents of an examination.
    2. No credit shall be given to applicants who are dismissed from an examination, and dismissal may result in denial of an application.
    3. The Board, or the testing service under contract with the Board, may file theft charges against any person who removes or attempts to remove an examination or any portion thereof or any written material furnished with the examination whether by actual physical removal or by transcription.
    4. The Board may deny, suspend, or revoke a license for disclosing to another person the content of any portion of an examination.

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§153.12 Criminal History Checks

  1. An applicant or license holder applying for or renewing a license issued by the Board must submit a complete and legible set of fingerprints, in a manner approved by the Board, to the Board, the Texas Real Estate Commission, the Texas Department of Public Safety, or other authorized entity for the purpose of obtaining criminal history record information from the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
  2. The Board will conduct a criminal history check of each applicant for a license or renewal of a license.
  3. If an applicant or license holder has previously submitted fingerprints on behalf of the Board or Commission as provided in (a), no additional fingerprints are required.

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§153.13 Education Required for Licensing

  1. Applicants for a license must meet all educational requirements established by the AQB.
  2. The Board may accept a course of study to satisfy educational requirements for licensing established by the Act or by this section if the Board has approved the course and determined it to be a course related to real estate appraisal.
  3. The Board will approve courses for licensing upon a determination of the Board that:
    1. the subject matter of the course was appraisal related;
    2. the course was offered by an accredited college or university, or the course was approved by the AQB under its course approval process as a qualifying education course;
    3. the applicant obtained credit received in a classroom presentation the hours of instruction for which credit was given and successfully completed a final examination for course credit except as specified in subsection (i) of this section (relating to distance education); and
    4. the course was at least 15 classroom hours in duration, including time devoted to examinations that are considered to be part of the course.
  4. The Board may require an applicant to furnish materials such as course outlines, syllabi, course descriptions or official transcripts to verify course content or credit.
  5. Course providers may obtain prior approval of a course by filing forms prescribed by the Board and submitting a letter indicating that the course has been approved by the AQB under its course approval process. Approval of a course based on AQB approval expires on the date the AQB approval expires and is automatically revoked upon revocation of the AQB approval.
  6. If the transcript reflects the actual hours of instruction the student received from an acceptable provider, the Board will accept classroom hour units of instruction as shown on the transcript or other document evidencing course credit. Fifteen classroom hours of credit may be awarded for one academic semester hour of credit.
  7. Distance education courses may be acceptable to meet the classroom hour requirement, or its equivalent, provided that the course is approved by the Board, that a minimum time equal to the number of hours of credit elapses from the date of course enrollment until its completion, and that the course meets the criteria listed in paragraph (1) or (2) of this subsection.
    1. The course must have been presented by an accredited college or university that offers distance education programs in other disciplines; and
      1. the person has successfully completed a written examination administered to the positively identified person at a location and proctored by an official approved by the college or university; and
      2. the content and length of the course must meet the requirements for real estate appraisal related courses established by this chapter and by the requirements for qualifying education established by the AQB and is equivalent to a minimum of 15 classroom hours.
    2. The course has received approval for academic credit or has been approved under the AQB Course Approval program; and
      1. the person successfully completes a written examination proctored by an official approved by the presenting entity;
      2. the course meets the requirements for qualifying education established by the AQB; and
      3. is equivalent to a minimum of fifteen classroom hours.
  8. "In-house" education and training is not acceptable for meeting the educational requirements for licensure.
  9. To meet the USPAP educational requirements, a course must:
    1. utilize the "National Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) Course" promulgated by the Appraisal Foundation, including the Student Manual and Instructor Manual; or
    2. be an equivalent USPAP course as determined by the AQB that:
      1. is devoted to the USPAP with a minimum of 15 classroom hours of instruction;
      2. uses the current edition of the USPAP promulgated by the ASB; and
      3. provides each student with his or her own permanent copy of the current edition of the USPAP promulgated by the ASB
  10. Unless authorized by law, neither current members of the Board nor those Board staff engaged in the approval of courses or educational qualifications of applicants or license holders shall be eligible to teach or guest lecture as part of an education course approved for licensing.
  11. If the Board determines that a course no longer complies with the requirements for approval, it may suspend or revoke the approval. Proceedings to suspend or revoke approval of a course shall be conducted in accordance with the Board's disciplinary provisions for licenses.

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§153.15 Experience Required for Licensing

  1. Applicants for a license must meet all experience requirements established by the AQB.
  2. The Board awards experience credit in accordance with current criteria established by the AQB and in accordance with the provisions of the Act specifically relating to experience requirements. An hour of experience means 60 minutes expended in one or more of the acceptable appraisal experience areas. Calculation of the hours of experience is based solely on actual hours of experience. Hours may be treated as cumulative in order to achieve the necessary hours of appraisal experience. Any one or any combination of the following categories may be acceptable for satisfying the applicable experience requirement. Experience credit may be awarded for:
    1. An appraisal or appraisal analysis when performed in accordance with Standards 1 and 2 and other provisions of the USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraisal or appraisal analysis.
    2. Mass appraisal, including ad valorem tax appraisal that:
      1. conforms to USPAP Standards 5 and 6; and
      2. demonstrates proficiency in appraisal principles, techniques, or skills used by appraisers practicing under USPAP Standard 1.
    3. Appraisal review that:
      1. conforms to USPAP Standards 3 and 4; and
      2. demonstrates proficiency in appraisal principles, techniques, or skills used by appraisers practicing under USPAP Standard 1.
    4. Appraisal consulting services, including market analysis, cash flow and/or investment analysis, highest and best use analysis, and feasibility analysis when it demonstrates proficiency in appraisal principles, techniques, or skills used by appraisers practicing under USPAP Standards 1 and 2 and using appropriate methods and techniques applicable to appraisal consulting.
  3. Experience credit may not be awarded for teaching appraisal courses.
  4. Recency of Experience.
    1. The Appraisal Experience Log submitted by an applicant must include a minimum of 10 appraisal reports representing at least 10 percent of the hours and property type of experience required for each license category and for which an applicant seeks experience credit that have been performed within 5 years before the date an application is accepted for filing by the Board.
    2. This requirement does not eliminate an applicant's responsibility to comply with the 5-year records retention requirement in USPAP.
  5. Experience credit for first-time applicants. Each applicant must submit a Board-approved Appraisal Experience Log and Appraisal Experience Affidavit listing each appraisal assignment or other work for which the applicant is seeking experience credit. The Board may grant experience credit for work listed on an applicant's Appraisal Experience Log that:
    1. complies with the USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraisal;
    2. is verifiable and supported by:
      1. work files in which the applicant is identified as participating in the appraisal process; or
      2. appraisal reports that:
        1. name the applicant in the certification as providing significant real property appraisal assistance; or
        2. the applicant has signed;
    3. was performed when the applicant had legal authority to do so; and
    4. complies with the acceptable categories of experience established by the AQB and stated in subsection (b) of this section.
  6. Experience credit for current licensed residential or certified residential license holders who seek to upgrade their license.
    1. Applicants who currently hold a licensed residential or certified residential appraiser license issued by the Board and want to upgrade this license must:
      1. submit an application on a Board-approved form;
      2. submit a Board-approved Appraisal Experience Log and Appraisal Experience Affidavit listing each appraisal assignment or other work for which the applicant is seeking experience credit for the full amount of experience hours required for the license sought;
      3. pay the required application fee; and
      4. satisfy any other requirement for the license sought, including but not limited to:
        1. the incremental number of experience hours required;
        2. the hours of experience required for each property type;
        3. the minimum length of time over which the experience is claimed; and
        4. the recency requirement in this section.
    2. Review of experience logs.
      1. An applicant who seeks to upgrade a current license issued by the Board must produce experience logs to document 100 percent of the experience hours required for the license sought.
      2. Upon review of an applicant's experience logs, the Board may, at its sole discretion, grant experience credit for the hours shown on the applicant's logs even if some work files have been destroyed because the 5-year records retention period in USPAP has passed.
  7. The Board may, at its sole discretion, accept evidence other than an applicant's Appraisal Experience Log and Appraisal Experience Affidavit to demonstrate experience claimed by an applicant.
  8. The Board must verify the experience claimed by each applicant generally complies with USPAP.
    1. Verification may be obtained by:
      1. requesting copies of appraisals and all supporting documentation, including the work files; and
      2. engaging in other investigative research determined to be appropriate by the Board.
    2. If the Board requests documentation from an applicant to verify experience claimed by an applicant, the applicant has 60 days to provide the requested documentation to the Board.
    3. Failure to comply with a request for documentation to verify experience, or submission of experience that is found not to comply with the requirements for experience credit, is a violation of these rules and may result in denial of a license application, and any disciplinary action up to and including revocation.

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§153.16 License Reinstatement

  1. This section applies only to a person who:
    1. previously held an appraiser license issued by the Board that has expired; and
    2. seeks to obtain the same level of appraiser license previously held by the person before its expiration.
  2. A person described in subsection (a) may apply to reinstate the person's former license by:
    1. submitting an application for reinstatement on a form approved by the Board;
    2. paying the required fee;
    3. satisfying the Board as to the person's honesty, trustworthiness and integrity;
    4. satisfying the experience requirements in this section; and
    5. satisfying the fingerprint and criminal history check requirements in §153.12 of this title.
  3. Applicants for reinstatement under this section must demonstrate completion of 14 hours of appraiser continuing education for each year since the last renewal of the person's previous license.
  4. Applicants for reinstatement must demonstrate that their appraisal experience complies with USPAP as follows:
    1. Persons who have work files and license expired less than 5 years. A person described in subsection (a) of this section who has appraisal work files and whose previous license has been expired less than five years may apply to reinstate the person's previous license by submitting an experience log as follows:
      1. For reinstatement as a licensed residential appraiser or a certified residential appraiser, a minimum of 10 residential appraisal reports representing at least 10 percent of the hours and property type of experience required by the AQB for the applicable license category.
      2. For reinstatement as a certified general appraiser, a minimum of 10 non-residential appraisal reports representing at least 10 percent of the total hours of experience required by the AQB for this license category.
    2. Persons who do not have work files or license expired more than 5 years.
      1. A person described in subsection (a) who does not have appraisal work files or whose previous license has been expired for more than five years may apply for a license as an appraiser trainee for the purpose of acquiring the appraisal experience required under this subsection.
      2. An appraiser trainee licensed under this section may apply for reinstatement at the same level of appraiser license that the applicant previously held, after the applicant completes the required number of appraisal reports or hours of real estate appraisal experience as follows:
        1. For reinstatement as a licensed residential appraiser or certified residential appraiser, the applicant must complete a minimum of 10 residential appraisal reports representing at least 10 percent of the experience hours required by the AQB for the applicable license category.
        2. For reinstatement as a certified general appraiser, the applicant must complete a minimum of 10 non-residential appraisal reports representing at least 10 percent of the total hours of experience required by the AQB for this license category.
      3. Upon completion of the required number of appraisal reports or hours of real estate appraisal experience, the applicant must submit an experience log.
      4. If an appraiser trainee seeking reinstatement under this section is supervised by a supervisory appraiser with more than three appraiser trainees, those trainees seeking reinstatement under this section satisfy the required progress monitoring through completion of the experience audit under subsection (e) of this section and need not complete the voluntary appraiser trainee experience reviews under §153.22 of this title.
  5. Consistent with §153.15 of this title, the Board will evaluate each applicant's real estate appraisal experience for compliance with USPAP based on the submitted experience log.
  6. For those persons described in subsection (a) of this section the Board has discretion to waive the following requirements:
    1. Proof of qualifying education;
    2. College education or degree requirement; or
    3. Examination for persons whose appraiser license has been expired for less than five years.
  7. Consistent with this chapter, upon review of the applicant's real estate appraisal experience, the Board may:
    1. Reinstate the applicant's previous appraiser license;
    2. Reinstate the applicant's previous appraiser license, contingent upon completion of additional education, experience or mentorship; or
    3. Deny the application.

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§153.17 License Renewal

  1. General Provisions.
    1. The Board will send a renewal notice to the license holder at least 90 days prior to the expiration of the license. It is the responsibility of the license holder to apply for renewal in accordance with this chapter, and failure to receive a renewal notice from the Board does not relieve the license holder of the responsibility to timely apply for renewal.
    2. A license holder renews the license by timely filing an application for renewal, paying the appropriate fees to the Board, and satisfying all applicable education, experience, fingerprint and criminal history check requirements.
    3. To renew a license on active status, a license holder must complete the ACE report form approved by the Board and, within 20 days of filing the renewal application, submit course completion certificates for each course that was not already submitted by the education provider and reflected in the license holder's electronic license record.
      1. The Board may request additional verification of ACE submitted in connection with a renewal. If requested, such documentation must be provided within 20 days after the date of request.
      2. Knowingly or intentionally furnishing false or misleading ACE information in connection with a renewal is grounds for disciplinary action up to and including license revocation.
    4. An application for renewal received by the Board is timely and acceptable for processing if it is:
      1. complete;
      2. accompanied with payment of the required fees; and
      3. postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service, accepted by an overnight delivery service, or accepted by the Board's online processing system on or before the date of expiration.
  2. ACE Extensions.
    1. The Board may grant, at the time it issues a license renewal, an extension of time of up to 60 days after the expiration date of the previous license to complete ACE required to renew a license, subject to the following:
      1. The license holder must:
        1. timely submit the completed renewal form;
        2. complete an extension request form; and
        3. pay the required renewal and extension fees.
      2. ACE courses completed during the 60-day extension period apply only to the current renewal and may not be applied to any subsequent renewal of the license.
      3. A person whose license was renewed with a 60-day ACE extension:
        1. will be designated as non-AQB compliant on the National Registry and will not perform appraisals in a federally related transaction until verification is received by the Board that the ACE requirements have been met;
        2. may continue to perform appraisals in non-federally related transactions under the renewed license;
        3. must, within 60 days after the date of expiration of the previous license, complete the approved ACE report form and submit course completion certificates for each course that was not already submitted by the provider and reflected in the applicant's electronic license record; and
        4. will have the renewed license placed in inactive status if, within 60 days of the previous expiration date, ACE is not completed and reported in the manner indicated in paragraph (2) of this subsection. The renewed license will remain on inactive status until satisfactory evidence of meeting the ACE requirements has been received by the Board and the fee to return to active status required by §153.5 of this title (relating to Fees) has been paid.
    2. Appraiser trainees may not obtain an extension of time to complete required continuing education.
  3. Renewal of Licenses for Persons on Active Duty. A person who is on active duty in the United States armed forces may renew an expired license without being subject to any increase in fee imposed in his or her absence, or any additional education or experience requirements if the person:
    1. did not provide appraisal services while on active duty;
    2. provides a copy of official orders or other documentation acceptable to the Board showing the person was on active duty during the last renewal period;
    3. applies for the renewal within two years after the person's active duty ends;
    4. pays the renewal application fees in effect when the previous license expired; and
    5. completes ACE requirements that would have been imposed for a timely renewal.
  4. Late Renewal. If an application is filed within six months of the expiration of a previous license, the applicant shall also provide satisfactory evidence of completion of any continuing education that would have been required for a timely renewal of the previous license.

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§153.18 Appraiser Continuing Education (ACE)

  1. The purpose of ACE is to ensure that license holders participate in programs that maintain and increase their skill, knowledge, and competency in real estate appraising.
  2. To renew a license, a license holder must successfully complete the equivalent of at least 28 classroom hours of ACE courses approved by the Board, including the 7-hour National USPAP Update course during the license holder's continuing education cycle. The courses must comply with the requirements set out in subsection (d) of this section.
  3. The Board will base its review and approval of ACE courses upon the appraiser qualifications criteria of the AQB.
  4. The following types of courses may be accepted for ACE:
    1. A course that meets the requirements for licensing also may be accepted for ACE if:
      1. The course is devoted to one or more of the appraisal related topics of the appraiser qualifications criteria of the AQB for continuing education;
      2. the course was not repeated within the license holder's continuing education cycle; and
      3. the course is at least two hours in length.
    2. The Board will accept as ACE any continuing education course that has been approved by the AQB course approval process or by another state appraiser licensing and certification board.
      1. Course providers may obtain prior approval of ACE courses by filing forms approved by the Board and submitting a letter indicating that the course has been approved by the AQB under its course approval process or by another state appraiser licensing and certification board.
      2. Approval of a course based on AQB approval expires on the date the AQB approval expires and is automatically revoked upon revocation of the AQB approval.
      3. Approval of a course based on another state licensing and certification board shall expire on the earlier of the expiration date in the other state, if applicable, or two years from Board approval and is automatically revoked upon revocation of the other state board's approval.
    3. Distance education courses may be accepted as ACE if:
      1. The course is:
        1. Approved by the Board;
        2. Presented by an accredited college or university that offers distance education programs in other disciplines; or
        3. Approved by the AQB under its course approval process; and
      2. The student successfully completes a written examination proctored by an official approved by the presenting college, university, or sponsoring organization consistent with the requirements of the course accreditation; and
      3. A minimum number of hours equal to the hours of course credit have elapsed between the time of course enrollment and completion.
  5. To satisfy the USPAP ACE requirement, a course must:
    1. be the 7-hour National USPAP Update Course or its equivalent, as determined by the AQB;
    2. use the current edition of the USPAP;
    3. provide each student with his or her own paper or electronic copy of the current USPAP; and
    4. be taught by at least one instructor who is an AQB-certified USPAP instructor and also licensed as a certified general or certified residential appraiser.
  6. Providers of USPAP ACE courses may include up to one additional hour of supplemental Texas specific information. This may include topics such as the Act, Board Rules, processes and procedures, enforcement issues, or other topics deemed appropriate by the Board.
  7. Up to one half of a license holder's ACE requirements may be satisfied through participation other than as a student, in real estate appraisal educational processes and programs. Examples of activities for which credit may be granted are teaching an ACE course, educational program development, authorship of real estate appraisal textbooks, or similar activities that are determined by the Board to be equivalent to obtaining ACE.
  8. The following types of courses or activities may not be counted toward ACE requirements:
    1. Teaching the same ACE course more than once per license renewal cycle;
    2. "In house" education or training; or
    3. Appraisal experience.
  9. ACE credit for attending a Board meeting.
    1. The Board may award a minimum of two hours and up to a maximum of 4 hours of ACE credit to a current license holder for attending the Board meeting held in February of an even numbered year.
    2. The hours of ACE credit to be awarded will depend on the actual length of the Board meeting.
    3. ACE credit will only be awarded in whole hour increments. For example, if the Board meeting is 2 and one half hours long, only 2 hours of ACE credit will be awarded.
    4. To be eligible for ACE credit for attending a Board meeting, a license holder must:
      1. Attend the meeting in person;
      2. Attend the entire meeting, excluding breaks;
      3. Provide photo identification; and
      4. Sign in and out on the class attendance roster for the meeting.
    5. No ACE credit will be awarded to a license holder for partial attendance.
  10. ACE credit for attending presentations by current Board members or staff. As authorized by law, current members of the Board and Board staff may teach or guest lecture as part of an approved ACE course. To obtain ACE credit for attending a presentation by a current Board member or Board staff, the course provider must submit the applicable form and satisfy the requirements for ACE course approval in this section.
  11. If the Board determines that an ACE course no longer complies with the requirements for approval, it may suspend or revoke the approval. Proceedings to suspend or revoke approval of a course shall be conducted in accordance with the Board's disciplinary provisions for licenses.

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§153.19 Licensing for Persons with Criminal History and Moral Character Determination

  1. No currently incarcerated individual is eligible to obtain or renew a license. A person's license will be revoked upon the person's imprisonment following a felony conviction, felony probation revocation, revocation of parole, or revocation of mandatory suspension.
  2. The Board may suspend or revoke an existing valid license, disqualify an individual from receiving a license, deny to a person the opportunity to be examined for a license or deny any application for a license, if the person has been convicted of a felony, had their felony probation revoked, had their parole revoked, or had their mandatory supervision revoked. Any such action shall be made after consideration of the factors detailed in Texas Occupations Code §53.022 and subsection (d) of this section.
  3. A license holder must conduct himself or herself with honesty, integrity, and trustworthiness. Thus, the Board has considered the factors in Texas Occupations Code §53.022 and deems the following crimes to be directly related to the occupation of appraiser or appraiser trainee:
    1. offenses involving fraud or misrepresentation;
    2. offenses against real or personal property belonging to another, if committed knowingly or intentionally;
    3. offenses against public administration;
    4. offenses involving the sale or other disposition of real or personal property belonging to another without authorization of law;
    5. offenses involving moral turpitude; and
    6. offenses of attempting or conspiring to commit any of the foregoing offenses.
  4. In determining the present fitness of an applicant or license holder who has been convicted of a crime, the Board will consider the following evidence:
    1. the extent and nature of the past criminal activity;
    2. the age at the time of the commission of the crime;
    3. the amount of time that has elapsed since the last criminal activity;
    4. the conduct and work activity prior to and following the criminal activity;
    5. evidence of rehabilitation or rehabilitative effort while incarcerated or following release; and
    6. other evidence of present fitness including letters of recommendation from:
      1. prosecution, law enforcement, and correctional officers who prosecuted, arrested, or had custodial responsibility;
      2. the sheriff and chief of police in the community where the applicant or license holder resides; and
      3. any other person in contact with the applicant or license holder.
  5. It shall be the responsibility of the applicant or license holder to the extent possible to secure and provide the Board the recommendations of the prosecution, law enforcement, and correctional authorities, as well as evidence, in the form required by the Board, relating to whether the applicant has maintained a record of steady employment, has supported his or her dependents and otherwise maintained a record of good conduct, and is current on the payment of all outstanding court costs, supervision fees, fines, and restitution as may have been ordered in all criminal cases in which the person has been convicted.
  6. Moral Character Determination. Before applying for a license, a person may request the Board to determine if the prospective applicant's moral character satisfies the Board's requirements for licensing by submitting the request form approved by the Board and paying the required fee. Upon receiving such a request, the Board may request additional supporting materials. Requests will be processed under the same standards as applications for a license.

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§153.20 Guidelines for Revocation, Suspension, Denial of License; Probationary License

  1. The Board may suspend or revoke a license or deny issuing a license to an applicant at any time the Board determines that the applicant or license holder:
    1. disregards or violates a provision of the Act or the Board rules;
    2. is convicted of a felony;
    3. fails to notify the Board not later than the 30th day after the date of the final conviction if the person, in a court of this or another state or in a federal court, has been convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to a felony or a criminal offense involving fraud or moral turpitude;
    4. fails to notify the Board not later than the 30th day after the date of incarceration if the person, in this or another state, has been incarcerated for a criminal offense involving fraud or moral turpitude;
    5. fails to notify the Board not later than the 30th day after the date disciplinary action becomes final against the person with regard to any occupational license the person holds in Texas or any other jurisdiction;
    6. fails to comply with the USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraiser service;
    7. acts or holds himself or herself or any other person out as a person licensed under the Act when not so licensed;
    8. accepts payment for appraiser services but fails to deliver the agreed service in the agreed upon manner;
    9. refuses to refund payment received for appraiser services when he or she has failed to deliver the appraiser service in the agreed upon manner;
    10. accepts payment for services contingent upon a minimum, maximum, or pre-agreed value estimate except when such action would not interfere with the appraiser's obligation to provide an independent and impartial opinion of value and full disclosure of the contingency is made in writing to the client;
    11. offers to perform appraiser services or agrees to perform such services when employment to perform such services is contingent upon a minimum, maximum, or pre-agreed value estimate except when such action would not interfere with the appraiser's obligation to provide an independent and impartial opinion of value and full disclosure of the contingency is made in writing to the client;
    12. makes a material misrepresentation or omission of material fact;
    13. has had a license as an appraiser revoked, suspended, or otherwise acted against by any other jurisdiction for an act which is a crime under Texas law;
    14. procures, or attempts to procure, a license by making false, misleading, or fraudulent representation;
    15. fails to actively, personally, and diligently supervise an appraiser trainee or any person not licensed under the Act who assists the license holder in performing real estate appraiser services;
    16. has had a final civil judgment entered against him or her on any one of the following grounds:
      1. fraud;
      2. intentional or knowing misrepresentation;
      3. grossly negligent misrepresentation in the performance of appraiser services;
    17. fails to make good on a payment issued to the Board within thirty days after the Board has mailed a request for payment by certified mail to the license holder's last known business address as reflected by the Board's records;
    18. knowingly or willfully engages in false or misleading conduct or advertising with respect to client solicitation;
    19. acts or holds himself or any other person out as a person licensed under this or another state's Act when not so licensed;
    20. misuses or misrepresents the type of classification or category of license number;
    21. engages in any other act relating to the business of appraising that the Board, in its discretion, believes warrants a suspension or revocation;
    22. uses any title, designation, initial or other insignia or identification that would mislead the public as to that person's credentials, qualifications, competency, or ability to perform licensed appraisal services;
    23. fails to comply with an agreed order or a final order of the Board;
    24. fails to answer all inquiries concerning matters under the jurisdiction of the Board within 20 days of notice to said individual's address of record, or within the time period allowed if granted a written extension by the Board; or
    25. after conducting reasonable due diligence, knowingly accepts an assignment from an appraisal management company that is not exempt from registration under the Act which:
      1. has not registered with the Board; or
      2. is registered with the Board but has not placed the appraiser on its panel of appraisers maintained with the Board; or
    26. fails to approve, sign, and deliver to their appraiser trainee the appraisal experience log and affidavit required by §153.15(f)(1) and §153.17(c)(1) of this title for all experience actually and lawfully acquired by the trainee while under the appraiser's sponsorship.
  2. The Board has discretion in determining the appropriate penalty for any violation under subsection (a) of this section.
  3. The Board may probate a penalty or sanction, and may impose conditions of the probation, including, but not limited to:
    1. the type and scope of appraisals or appraisal practice;
    2. the number of appraiser trainees or authority to sponsor appraiser trainees;
    3. requirements for additional education;
    4. monetary administrative penalties; and
    5. requirements for reporting real property appraisal activity to the Board.
  4. A person applying for a license after the Board has revoked or accepted the surrender in lieu of disciplinary action of a license previously held by that person must comply with all current license requirements. Such persons may not apply to reinstate a previously held license as provided in §153.16 of this title.
  5. The provisions of this section do not relieve a person from civil liability or from criminal prosecution under the Act or other laws of this State.
  6. The Board may not investigate a complaint submitted to the Board more than four years after the date on which the alleged violation occurred.
  7. Except as provided by Texas Government Code §402.031(b) and Texas Penal Code §32.32(d), there shall be no undercover or covert investigations conducted by authority of the Act.
  8. A license may be revoked or suspended by the Attorney General or other court of competent jurisdiction for failure to pay child support under the provisions of Chapter 232 of the Texas Family Code.
  9. If the Board determines that issuance of a probationary license is appropriate, the order entered by the Board with regard to the application must set forth the terms and conditions for the probationary license. Terms and conditions for a probationary license may include any of the following:
    1. that the probationary license holder comply with the Act and with the rules of the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board;
    2. that the probationary license holder fully cooperate with the enforcement division of the Board in the investigation of any complaint filed against the license holder or any other complaint in which the license holder may have relevant information;
    3. that the probationary license holder attend a prescribed number of classroom hours in specific areas of study during the probationary period;
    4. that the probationary license holder limit appraisal practice as prescribed in the order;
    5. that the probationary license holder work under the direct supervision of a certified general or certified residential appraiser who will review and sign each appraisal report completed;
    6. that the probationary license holder report regularly to the Board on any matter which is the basis of the probationary license; or
    7. that the probationary license holder comply with any other terms and conditions contained in the order which have been found to be reasonable and appropriate by the Board after due consideration of the circumstances involved in the particular application.
  10. Unless the order granting a probationary license specifies otherwise, a probationary license holder may renew the license after the probationary period by filing a renewal application, satisfying applicable renewal requirements, and paying the prescribed renewal fee.
  11. If a probationary license expires prior to the completion of a probationary term and the probationary license holder files a late renewal application, any remaining probationary period shall be reinstated effective as of the day following the renewal of the probationary license.

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§153.21 Appraiser Trainees and Supervisory Appraisers

  1. Supervision of appraiser trainees required.
    1. An appraiser trainee may perform appraisals or appraiser services only under the active, personal and diligent direction and supervision of a supervisory appraiser.
    2. An appraiser trainee may be supervised by more than one supervisory appraiser.
    3. Number of Appraiser Trainees Supervised.
      1. Supervisory appraisers may supervise no more than three appraiser trainees at one time unless the requirements in subsection (a)(3)(B) are met;
      2. Supervisory appraisers may supervise up to five appraiser trainees at one time if:
        1. the supervisory appraiser has been licensed as a certified appraiser for more than five years; and
        2. all of the supervisory appraiser's appraiser trainees must submit requests for the Board to review the appraiser trainee's work product as specified in §153.22 of this title or satisfy the required progress monitoring as permitted in §153.16 of this title.
    4. A supervisory appraiser may be added during the term of an appraiser trainee's license if:
      1. The supervisory appraiser and appraiser trainee have provided proof to the Board of completion of an approved Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course;
      2. an application to supervise has been received and approved by the Board; and
      3. the applicable fee has been paid.
    5. A licensed appraiser trainee who signs an appraisal report must include his or her license number and the word "Trainee" as part of the appraiser trainee's signature in the report.
  2. Eligibility requirements for appraiser trainee supervision.
    1. To be eligible to supervise an appraiser trainee, a certified appraiser must:
      1. be in good standing and not subject to any disciplinary action within the last three years that affected the certified appraiser's eligibility to engage in appraisal practice;
      2. complete an approved Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course; and
      3. submit proof of course completion to the Board.
    2. Before supervising an appraiser trainee, the supervisory appraiser must notify the appraiser trainee in writing of any disciplinary action taken against the supervisory appraiser within the last three years that did not affect the supervisory appraiser's eligibility to engage in appraisal practice.
    3. An application to supervise must be received and approved by the Board before supervision begins.
  3. Maintaining eligibility to supervise appraiser trainees.
    1. A supervisory appraiser who wishes to continue to supervise appraiser trainees upon renewal of his/her license must complete an approved Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course within four years before the expiration date of the supervisory appraiser's current license and provide proof of completion to the Board.
    2. If a supervisory appraiser has not provided proof of course completion at the time of renewal, but has met all other requirements for renewing the license the supervisory appraiser will no longer be eligible to supervise appraiser trainees; and the Board will take the following actions:
      1. the supervisory appraiser's license will be renewed on active status; and
      2. the license of any appraiser trainees supervised solely by that supervisory appraiser will be placed on inactive status.
    3. A certified appraiser may restore eligibility to supervise appraiser trainees by:
      1. completing the course required by this section; and
      2. submitting proof of course completion to the Board.
    4. The supervisory appraiser's supervision of previously supervised appraiser trainees may be reinstated by:
      1. submitting the required form to the Board; and
      2. payment of any applicable fees.
  4. Maintaining eligibility to act as an appraiser trainee.
    1. Appraiser trainees must maintain an appraisal log and appraisal experience affidavits on forms approved by the Board, for the license period being renewed. It is the responsibility of both the appraiser trainee and the supervisory appraiser to ensure the appraisal log is accurate, complete and signed by both parties at least quarterly or upon change in supervisory appraiser. The appraiser trainee will promptly provide copies of the experience logs and affidavits to the Board upon request.
    2. An appraiser trainee must complete an approved Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course within four years before the expiration date of the appraiser trainee's current license and provide proof of completion to the Board.
    3. If an appraiser trainee has not provided proof of course completion at the time of renewal, but has met all other requirements for renewing the license:
      1. the Board will renew the appraiser trainee's license on inactive status;
      2. the appraiser trainee will no longer be eligible to perform appraisals or appraisal services; and
      3. the appraiser trainee's relationship with any supervisory appraiser will be terminated.
    4. An appraiser trainee may return the appraiser trainee's license to active status by:
      1. completing the course required by this section;
      2. submitting proof of course completion to the Board;
      3. submitting an application to return to active status, including an application to add a supervisory appraiser; and
      4. paying any required fees.
  5. Duties of the supervisory appraiser.
    1. Supervisory appraisers are responsible to the public and to the Board for the conduct of the appraiser trainee under the Act.
    2. The supervisory appraiser assumes all the duties, responsibilities, and obligations of a supervisory appraiser as specified in these rules and must diligently supervise the appraiser trainee. Diligent supervision includes, but is not limited to, the following:
      1. direct supervision and training as necessary;
      2. ongoing training and supervision as necessary after the supervisory appraiser determines that the appraiser trainee no longer requires direct supervision;
      3. communication with and accessibility to the appraiser trainee; and
      4. review and quality control of the appraiser trainee's work.
    3. Supervisory appraisers must approve and sign the appraiser trainee's appraisal log and experience affidavit at least quarterly and provide appraiser trainees with access to any appraisals and work files completed under the supervisory appraiser.
    4. After notice and hearing, the Board may reprimand a supervisory appraiser or may suspend or revoke a supervisory appraiser's license based on conduct by the appraiser trainee constituting a violation of the Act or Board rules.
  6. Termination of supervision.
    1. Supervision may be terminated by the supervisory appraiser or the appraiser trainee.
    2. If supervision is terminated, the terminating party must:
      1. immediately notify the Board on a form approved by the Board; and
      2. notify the non-terminating party in writing no later than the 10th day after the date of termination; and
      3. pay any applicable fees no later than the 10th day after the date of termination.
    3. If an appraiser trainee is no longer under the supervision of a supervisory appraiser:
      1. the appraiser trainee may no longer perform the duties of an appraiser trainee; and
      2. is not eligible to perform those duties until:
        1. an application to supervise the trainee has been filed;
        2. any required fees have been paid; and
        3. the Board has approved the application.
  7. Course approval.
    1. To obtain Board approval of an Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course, a course provider must:
      1. submit form ATS-0, Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser Course Approval, adopted herein by reference; and
      2. satisfy the Board that all required content set out in form ATS-0 is adequately covered.
    2. Approval of an Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course shall expire two years from the date of Board approval.
    3. An Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course may be delivered through:
      1. classroom delivery method; or
      2. distance education delivery method. The delivery mechanism for distance education courses offered by a non-academic provider must be approved by an AQB-approved organization providing approval of course design and delivery.
  8. ACE credit.
    1. Supervisory appraisers who complete the Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course may receive ACE credit for the course.
    2. Appraiser Trainees may not receive qualifying or ACE credit for completing the Appraiser Trainee/Supervisory Appraiser course.

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§153.22 Voluntary Appraiser Trainee Experience Reviews

  1. Before applying for a license, an appraiser trainee may submit up to two requests for the Board to review the appraiser trainee's work product.
  2. An appraiser trainee may submit an application to the Board for review of the appraiser trainee's work product after:
    1. accumulating between thirty to fifty percent of the hours of appraisal experience required by the AQB for category of appraiser license the appraiser trainee will be applying for;
    2. accumulating between sixty to eighty percent of the hours of appraisal experience required by the AQB for category of appraiser license the appraiser trainee will be applying for; or
    3. both.
  3. Work product submitted for review must fall within one of the approved categories of experience credit described in §153.15(e) of this title and meet the definition of real estate appraisal experience in §153.1 of this title.
  4. To begin the review process, an appraiser trainee must:
    1. submit an application for work product review on a form approved by the Board;
    2. pay the required fee; and
    3. submit a completed appraisal report and corresponding work file from a time period during which the appraiser trainee had legal authority to perform the work.
  5. The application for review of an appraiser trainee's work product is not complete until the appraiser trainee submits all required documentation and pays the required fee.
  6. If an appraiser trainee provides inadequate documentation, the Board will contact the appraiser trainee in writing, identify any deficiencies and provide the appraiser trainee twenty days to cure the noted deficiencies. If the appraiser trainee fails to cure the deficiencies timely, the Board will terminate the appraiser trainee's application for work product review.
  7. The Board will provide the appraiser trainee with a written report identifying deficiencies in the appraiser trainee's work product after the application for review is complete.
  8. A review conducted under this provision:
    1. is for educational purposes only;
    2. does not constitute Board approval of the appraiser trainee's experience;
    3. does not preclude the Board from denying a license application submitted by the appraiser trainee in the future; and
    4. will not result in a complaint against the appraiser trainee unless review of the appraiser trainee's work product reveals:
      1. knowing or intentional misrepresentation, fraud or criminal conduct; or
      2. serious deficiencies that constitute grossly negligent acts or omissions.

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§153.23 Inactive Status

  1. A license holder may request to be placed on inactive status by filing a request for inactive status on a form approved by the Board and paying the required fee.
  2. A license holder whose license has expired may renew on inactive status within six months after the license expiration date by:
    1. filing an application for renewal on a form approved by the Board;
    2. indicating on the application that the license holder wishes to renew on inactive status;
    3. paying the required late renewal fees; and
    4. satisfying the fingerprint and criminal history check requirements in §153.12 of this title.
  3. A license holder on inactive status:
    1. shall not appraise real property, engage in appraisal practice, or perform any activity for which a license is required; and
    2. must file the proper renewal application and pay all required fees, except for the national registry fee, in order to renew the license.
  4. To return to active status, a license holder who has been placed on inactive status must:
    1. request to return to active status on a form approved by the Board;
    2. pay the required fee;
    3. satisfy all ACE requirements that were not completed while on inactive status, except that the license holder is not required to complete the most current USPAP update course more than once in order to return to active status and shall substitute other approved courses to meet the required number of ACE hours; and
    4. satisfy the fingerprint and criminal history check requirements in §153.12 of this title.
  5. A license holder who has been on inactive status may not resume practice until the Board issues an active license.

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§153.24 Complaint Processing

  1. Receipt of a Complaint Intake Form by the Board does not constitute the filing of a formal complaint by the Board against the individual named on the Complaint Intake Form. Upon receipt of a signed Complaint Intake Form, staff shall:
    1. assign the complaint a case number in the complaint tracking system; and
    2. send written acknowledgement of receipt to the Complainant.
  2. If the staff determines at any time that the complaint is not within the Board's jurisdiction or that no violation exists, the complaint shall be dismissed with no further processing. The Board or the commissioner may delegate to staff the duty to dismiss complaints.
  3. A complaint alleging mortgage fraud or in which mortgage fraud is suspected:
    1. may be investigated covertly; and
    2. shall be referred to the appropriate prosecutorial authorities.
  4. Staff may request additional information from any person, if necessary, to determine how to proceed with the complaint.
  5. As part of a preliminary investigative review, a copy of the Complaint Intake Form and all supporting documentation shall be sent to the Respondent unless the complaint qualifies for covert investigation and the Standards and Enforcement Services Division deems covert investigation appropriate.
  6. The Respondent shall submit a response within 20 days of receiving a copy of the Complaint Intake Form. The 20-day period may be extended for good cause upon request in writing or by e-mail. The response shall include the following:
    1. a copy of the appraisal report that is the subject of the complaint;
    2. a copy of the Respondent's work file associated with the appraisal(s) listed in the complaint, with the following signed statement attached to the work file(s): I SWEAR AND AFFIRM THAT EXCEPT AS SPECIFICALLY SET FORTH HEREIN, THE COPY OF EACH AND EVERY APPRAISAL WORK FILE ACCOMPANYING THIS RESPONSE IS A TRUE AND CORRECT COPY OF THE ACTUAL WORK FILE, AND NOTHING HAS BEEN ADDED TO OR REMOVED FROM THIS WORK FILE OR ALTERED AFTER PLACEMENT IN THE WORK FILE. (SIGNATURE OF RESPONDENT);
    3. a narrative response to the complaint, addressing each and every item in the complaint;
    4. a list of any and all persons known to the Respondent to have actual knowledge of any of the matters made the subject of the complaint and, if in the Respondent's possession, contact information;
    5. any documentation that supports Respondent's position that was not in the work file, as long as it is conspicuously labeled as non-work file documentation and kept separate from the work file. The Respondent may also address other matters not raised in the complaint that the Respondent believes need explanation; and
    6. a signed, dated and completed copy of any questionnaire sent by Board staff.
  7. Staff will evaluate the complaint within three months after receipt of the response from Respondent to determine whether sufficient evidence of a potential violation of the Act, Board rules, or the USPAP exists to pursue investigation and possible formal disciplinary action. If the staff determines that there is no jurisdiction, no violation exists, there is insufficient evidence to prove a violation, or the complaint warrants dismissal, including contingent dismissal, under subsection (k) of this section, the complaint shall be dismissed with no further processing.
  8. A formal complaint will be opened and investigated by a staff investigator or peer investigative committee, as appropriate, if:
    1. the informal complaint is not dismissed under subsection (g) of this section; or
    2. staff opens a formal complaint on its own motion.
  9. Written notice that a formal complaint has been opened will be sent to the Complainant and Respondent.
  10. The staff investigator or peer investigative committee assigned to investigate a formal complaint shall prepare a report detailing its findings on a form approved by the Board. Reports prepared by a peer investigative committee shall be reviewed by the Standards and Enforcement Services Division.
  11. In determining the proper disposition of a formal complaint pending as of or filed after the effective date of this subsection, and subject to the maximum penalties authorized under Texas Occupations Code §1103.552, staff, the administrative law judge in a contested case hearing, and the Board shall consider the following sanctions guidelines and list of non-exclusive factors as demonstrated by the evidence in the record of a contested case proceeding.
    1. For the purposes of these sanctions guidelines:
      1. A person will not be considered to have had a prior warning letter, contingent dismissal or discipline if that prior warning letter, contingent dismissal or discipline was issued by the Board more than seven years before the current alleged violation occurred;
      2. Prior discipline is defined as any sanction (including administrative penalty) received under a Board final or agreed order;
      3. A violation refers to a violation of any provision of the Act, Board rules or USPAP;
      4. "Minor deficiencies" is defined as violations of the Act, Board rules or USPAP which do not impact the credibility of the appraisal assignment results, the assignment results themselves and do not impact the license holder's honesty, integrity, or trustworthiness to the Board, the license holder's clients, or intended users of the appraisal service provided;
      5. "Serious deficiencies" is defined as violations of the Act, Board rules or USPAP that:
        1. impact the credibility of the appraisal assignment results, the assignment results themselves or do impact the license holder's honesty, trustworthiness or integrity to the Board, the license holder's clients, or intended users of the appraisal service provided; or
        2. are deficiencies done with knowledge, deliberate or willful disregard, or gross negligence that would otherwise be classified as "minor deficiencies";
      6. "Remedial measures" include, but are not limited to, training, mentorship, education, reexamination, or any combination thereof; and
      7. The terms of a contingent dismissal agreement will be in writing and agreed to by all parties. If the Respondent completes all remedial measures required in the agreement within the prescribed period of time, the complaint will be dismissed with a non-disciplinary warning letter.
    2. List of factors to consider in determining proper disposition of a formal complaint:
      1. Whether the Respondent has previously received a warning letter or contingent dismissal and, if so, the similarity of facts or violations in that previous complaint to the facts or violations in the instant complaint matter;
      2. Whether the Respondent has previously been disciplined;
      3. If previously disciplined, the nature of the prior discipline, including:
        1. Whether prior discipline concerned the same or similar violations or facts;
        2. The nature of the disciplinary sanctions previously imposed; and
        3. The length of time since the prior discipline;
      4. The difficulty or complexity of the appraisal assignment(s) at issue;
      5. Whether the violations found were of a negligent, grossly negligent or a knowing or intentional nature;
      6. Whether the violations found involved a single appraisal/instance of conduct or multiple appraisals/instances of conduct;
      7. To whom were the appraisal report(s) or the conduct directed, with greater weight placed upon appraisal report(s) or conduct directed at:
        1. A financial institution or their agent, contemplating a lending decision based, in part, on the appraisal report(s) or conduct at issue;
        2. The Board;
        3. A matter which is actively being litigated in a state or federal court or before a regulatory body of a state or the federal government;
        4. Another government agency or government sponsored entity, including, but not limited to, the United States Department of Veteran's Administration, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the State of Texas, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac; or
        5. A consumer contemplating a real property transaction involving the consumer's principal residence;
      8. Whether Respondent's violations caused any harm, including financial harm, and the extent or amount of such harm;
      9. Whether Respondent acknowledged or admitted to violations and cooperated with the Board's investigation prior to any contested case hearing;
      10. The level of experience Respondent had in the appraisal profession at the time of the violations, including:
        1. The level of appraisal credential Respondent held;
        2. The length of time Respondent had been an appraiser;
        3. The nature and extent of any education Respondent had received related to the areas in which violations were found; and
        4. Any other real estate or appraisal related background or experience Respondent had;
      11. Whether Respondent can improve appraisal skills and reports through the use of remedial measures;
    3. The following sanctions guidelines shall be employed in conjunction with the factors listed in paragraph (2) of this subsection to assist in reaching the proper disposition of a formal complaint:
      1. 1st Time Discipline Level 1–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence minor deficiencies will result in one of the following outcomes:
        1. Dismissal;
        2. Dismissal with non-disciplinary warning letter; or
        3. Contingent dismissal with remedial measures.
      2. 1st Time Discipline Level 2–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies will result in one of the following outcomes:
        1. Contingent dismissal with remedial measures; or
        2. A final order which imposes one or more of the following:
          1. Remedial measures;
          2. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
          3. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
          4. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
          5. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
          6. Up to $250 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, not to exceed $3,000 in the aggregate.
      3. 1st Time Discipline Level 3–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies and were done with knowledge, deliberately, willfully, or with gross negligence will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
        6. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
        7. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
        8. Up to $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      4. 2nd Time Discipline Level 1–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence minor deficiencies will result in one of the following outcomes:
        1. Dismissal;
        2. Dismissal with non-disciplinary warning letter;
        3. Contingent dismissal with remedial measures; or
        4. A final order which imposes one or more of the following:
          1. Remedial measures;
          2. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
          3. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
          4. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
          5. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
          6. Up to $250 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      5. 2nd Time Discipline Level 2–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
        6. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
        7. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
        8. Up to $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      6. 2nd Time Discipline Level 3–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies and were done with knowledge, deliberately, willfully, or with gross negligence will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
        6. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
        7. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
        8. Up to $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      7. 3rd Time Discipline Level 1–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence minor deficiencies will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
        6. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
        7. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent's is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
        8. $1,000 to $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      8. 3rd Time Discipline Level 2–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required promulgation, adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures addressing specific areas of professional practice;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the Respondent's practice;
        6. Restrictions on the Respondent's ability to sponsor any appraiser trainees;
        7. Restrictions on the scope of practice the Respondent is allowed to engage in for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied; or
        8. $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      9. 3rd Time Discipline Level 3–violations of the Act, Board Rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies and were done with knowledge, deliberately, willfully, or with gross negligence will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A revocation; or
        2. $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      10. 4th Time Discipline–violations of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP will result in a final order which imposes the following:
        1. A revocation; and
        2. $1,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of USPAP, Board rules, or the Act, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
      11. Unlicensed appraisal activity will result in a final order which imposes a $1,500 in administrative penalties per unlicensed appraisal activity, up to the maximum $5,000 statutory limit per complaint matter.
    4. In addition, staff may recommend any or all of the following:
      1. reducing or increasing the recommended sanction or administrative penalty for a complaint based on documented factors that support the deviation, including but not limited to those factors articulated under paragraph (2) of this subsection;
      2. probating all or a portion of any sanction or administrative penalty for a period not to exceed five years;
      3. requiring additional reporting requirements; and
      4. such other recommendations, with documented support, as will achieve the purposes of the Act, Board rules, or USPAP.
  12. Agreed resolutions of complaint matters pursuant to Texas Occupations Code §1103.458 or §1103.459 must be signed by the Respondent, a representative of the Standards and Enforcement Services Division, and the Commissioner.

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§153.25 Temporary Out-of-State Appraiser License

  1. A person licensed as an appraiser by another state, commonwealth, or territory may register with the Board so as to qualify to appraise real property in this state without holding a license issued under the Act if:
    1. the state, commonwealth or territory licensing program under which the person holds a license has not been disapproved by the ASC; and
    2. the appraiser's business in this state is of a temporary nature not to exceed six months.
  2. A person wishing to be registered under this section must:
    1. submit an application for registration on a form approved by the Board;
    2. pay the required fees; and
    3. provide all supporting documentation or information requested by the Board in connection with the application for registration.
  3. A person registered under this section must submit an irrevocable consent to service of process in this state on a form approved by the Board.
  4. A person registered under this section may apply for a 90 day extension to the original expiration date of the temporary registration, provided the person:
    1. is continuing the same appraisal assignment listed on the original application for temporary out-of-state appraiser registration; and
    2. requests an extension on a form approved by the Board, received by the Board or postmarked prior to the expiration of the current temporary registration.
  5. A person who registers under this section is not required to comply with the fingerprint requirements in §153.12 of this title.

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§153.26 Identity Theft

  1. For purposes of this section, "identity theft" shall mean any of the following activities occurring in connection with the rendition of real estate appraisal services:
    1. Unlawfully obtaining, possessing, transferring or using a license issued by the Board; and/or
    2. Unlawfully obtaining, possessing, transferring or using a person's electronic or handwritten signature.
  2. A license holder shall implement and maintain reasonable procedures to protect and safeguard themselves from identity theft.
  3. A license holder shall notify the Board if he or she is the victim of identity theft within 90 days of discovering such theft. Notice shall be effectuated by filing a signed, written complaint on a form prescribed by the Board.
  4. The Board may invalidate a current license and issue a new one to a person the Board determines is a victim of identity theft. Any person seeking the invalidation of a current license issuance of a new one shall submit a written, signed request on a form provided by the Board for the invalidation of a current license and issuance of a new one. The basis for the request must be identity theft, and the requestor must submit credible evidence that the person is a victim of identity theft. Without limiting the type of evidence a person may submit to the Board, a court order issued in accordance with Texas Business and Commerce Code Chapter 521, Subchapter C, declaring that the person is a victim of identity theft shall constitute credible evidence. Any such court order must relate to identity theft as defined in this section.
  5. Engaging in identity theft in order to perform appraisals constitutes a violation of §153.20(a)(7), (20), and (22) of this title. In addition to any action taken by the Board, persons engaging in identity theft may also be referred to the appropriate law enforcement agency for criminal prosecution.

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§153.27 License by Reciprocity

  1. A person who is licensed as an appraiser under the laws of a state whose appraiser program has not been disapproved by the ASC may apply for a Texas license at that same level by completing and submitting to the Board the application for license by reciprocity and paying the required fee to the Board.
  2. The Board shall verify that the applicant's license is valid and in good standing by checking the National Appraiser Registry. A reciprocal license may not be issued without the verification required by this subsection.
  3. Renewal of a license granted through reciprocity shall be in the same manner, and with the same requirements, term, and fees, as for the same classification of license as provided in §153.17 of this title.

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§153.33 Signature or Endorsement of Appraisal

  1. A license holder who signs an appraisal report is responsible for the content of the entire appraisal report.

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§153.37 Criminal Matters Referred to Law Enforcement

  1. Matters that are referred to the appropriate state or federal law enforcement agency for criminal investigation and prosecution shall also be fully and appropriately investigated by the Board's investigators, and the Board shall take appropriate disciplinary action.

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Chapter 155 Rules Relating to Standards of Practice

§155.1 Standards of Practice

  1. An appraisal or appraisal practice performed by a person subject to the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Act must conform with the "Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice" (USPAP) of the Appraisal Foundation in effect at the time of the appraisal or appraisal practice.

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§155.2 Work Relating to Property Tax Protests

  1. The preparation of a report or other work performed for an appraisal district or as part of any property tax consulting services on behalf of another person, that is used to develop, support, or protest an unequal appraisal under Chapter 41, Subchapter C or Chapter 42, Subchapter B of the Tax Code, is considered an appraisal or appraisal practice for the purposes of §155.1 of this chapter (relating to Standards of Practice) and must conform with Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), if the person preparing the report or other work presents it as the product of a person licensed, certified, registered, or approved under the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Act.
  2. A person licensed, certified, registered, or approved under the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Act who is also certified as a property tax professional under Chapter 1151 of the Occupations Code or as a property tax consultant under Chapter 1152 of the Occupations Code, must include the USPAP disclaimer set out in subsection (c) of this section whenever that person prepares a report or other work used to develop, support, or protest an unequal appraisal under Chapter 41, Subchapter C or Chapter 42, Subchapter B of the Tax Code, solely under the authority of a property tax professional or consultant certification.
  3. The USPAP disclaimer required under this section must:
    1. be located directly above the preparer's signature;
    2. be in at least 10-point boldface type; and
    3. read as follows: USPAP DISCLAIMER: I AM LICENSED OR CERTIFIED AS A REAL PROPERTY APPRAISER AND A PROPERTY TAX PROFESSIONAL OR CONSULTANT. THIS REPORT WAS PREPARED IN MY CAPACITY AS A PROPERTY TAX PROFESSIONAL OR CONSULTANT AND MAY NOT COMPLY WITH THE REQUIREMENTS FOR DEVELOPMENT OF A REAL PROPERTY APPRAISAL CONTAINED IN THE UNIFORM STANDARDS OF PROFESSIONAL APPRAISAL PRACTICE (USPAP) OF THE APPRAISAL STANDARDS BOARD OF THE APPRAISAL FOUNDATION.

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Chapter 157 Rules Relating to Practice and Procedure

Subchapter A General Provisions

§157.1 Definitions

  1. For the purposes of action against appraisers, appraiser trainees, applicants for certification, licensure, or trainee approval, and unlicensed persons performing appraisals, the definitions in §153.1 of this title shall apply to this chapter. For the purposes of action against appraisal management companies, applicants for registration, and unregistered persons engaging in appraisal management services, the definitions in §159.1 of this title shall apply to this chapter.

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§157.2 Object of Rules

  1. The purpose of these rules is to provide for a simple and efficient system of procedure before the board, to ensure uniform standards of practice and procedure, public participation and notice of board actions, and a fair and expeditious determination of causes. These rules shall be liberally construed, with a view towards the purpose for which they were adopted.

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§157.3 Scope of Rules

  1. This chapter shall govern the procedure for the institution, conduct and determination of all causes and proceedings before the Board. This chapter shall not be construed so as to enlarge, diminish, modify or alter the jurisdiction, powers or authority of the Board or the substantive rights of any person.

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§157.4 Computation of Time; Mailbox Rule

  1. In computing any period of time described or allowed by this chapter, by order of the Board, or by any applicable statute, the period shall begin on the day after the act, event or default in controversy and conclude on the last day of such computed period, unless it be a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, in which event the period runs until the end of the next day which is not a Saturday, Sunday nor a legal holiday.
  2. Mailbox rule.
    1. Service by mail is complete upon deposit of the notice in a prepaid, properly addressed envelope in a post office or official depository under the care and custody of the United States Postal Service.
    2. Service by electronic mail is complete upon sending an email to the respondent's or applicant's email address as shown in the Board's records.
    3. Presumption of receipt. Unless proven by evidence submitted to the contrary, a rebuttal presumption that respondent or applicant received proper notice from the Board will arise:
      1. immediately after sending electronic mail to the respondent's or applicant's email address as shown in the Board's records;
      2. three business days after the date the notice is deposited with the United States Postal Service.
    4. Failure to claim or refusal of properly addressed certified or registered mail does not support a finding of nonreceipt.

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§157.5 Conduct and Decorum

  1. Every party, witness, attorney or other representative shall comport himself or herself in all proceedings with proper dignity, courtesy and respect for the Board and all other parties. Disorderly conduct will not be tolerated. Attorneys and other representatives of parties shall observe and practice the standards of ethical behavior prescribed for attorneys-at-law by the State Bar of Texas.

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§157.6 Request for Advisory Opinions

  1. Upon written request and in accordance with the Texas Open Meetings Act, the Board may issue advisory opinions. Such opinions are not binding on the Board or on the person making the request, and may not be relied upon as an official Board ruling. The Board shall maintain a record of each advisory opinion, identifying the person to whom it was issued.

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§157.7 Denial of a License, Renewal or Reinstatement; Adverse Action Against a License Holder

  1. Denial of a License, Renewal or Reinstatement.
    1. If the Board denies the issuance, renewal or reinstatement of a license, the Board shall promptly give written notice of denial to the applicant. If the applicant is supervised by another license holder, the Board shall send a copy of the notice of denial to the supervisory appraiser.
    2. The notice of denial shall include:
      1. a statement of the Board's action;
      2. a summary of the facts and laws on which the action is based;
      3. a statement of the right of the person to request a hearing; and
      4. the following language in capital letters in boldface type: IF YOU FAIL TO REQUEST A HEARING IN WRITING WITHIN 30 DAYS, THIS DETERMINATION WILL BECOME FINAL.
    3. If a person fails to request a hearing in writing within 30 days of receiving the notice, the Board's determination will become final.
  2. Adverse Action Against a License Holder.
    1. If the Board proposes to take adverse action against a license holder, former license holder, or registrant, the Board shall promptly give written notice to the person against whom the action is proposed to be taken. If an appraiser trainee is the respondent, the Board shall send a copy of the notice to the supervisory appraiser.
    2. The notice of adverse action shall include:
      1. a summary of the facts and laws on which the proposed action is based;
      2. a statement of the action proposed by the Board, including the proposed sanction and/or the amount of any administrative penalties; and
      3. a statement of the right of the person to a hearing.
  3. A license holder who has agreed in writing to suspension or revocation for failure to comply with the terms of a consent order, consent agreement, or agreed order in connection with an application or a previous disciplinary matter is deemed to have had notice and an opportunity for a hearing in a subsequent action resulting from failure to comply with an administrative requirement of probation, such as payment of a fee or completion of coursework.
  4. Notices sent under this section are complete and effective if sent in the manner described in §157.9.
  5. The mailbox rule described in §157.9 applies to notices sent under this section if the notice was sent to the respondent's or applicant's mailing address or email address as shown in the Board's records in the manner described in §157.9.

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§157.8 Order Modifications

  1. The Board will consider a modification of an existing agreed or consent order at its next scheduled Board meeting if the license holder or registrant:
    1. is in compliance with the existing order at the time the request for modification is submitted ; and
    2. submits a written request that sets out the specific modification requested and the reason for the modification to the Board's general counsel on or before the 14th day prior to a scheduled Board meeting. Submission of a request for modification of an agreed or consent order to the Board does not relieve the license holder or registrant of compliance obligations under the existing order.

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Subchapter B Contested Case Hearings

§157.9 Notice of Hearing

  1. The notice of hearing must comply with Chapter 2001, Texas Government Code.
  2. The notice of hearing shall be served not later than the 30th day before the hearing date.
  3. Service of notice of hearing must be made in the manner prescribed by Chapter 2001, Texas Government Code, and the rules of the State Office of Administrative Hearings. Notice to a person who is a current license holder or applicant of the Board is complete and effective if sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the respondent's or applicant's mailing or email address as shown in the Board's records and sent by:
    1. electronic mail;
    2. first class mail; or
    3. certified mail, return receipt requested.
  4. The notice must include the following language in capital letters in boldface type: FAILURE TO APPEAR AT THE HEARING WILL RESULT IN THE ALLEGATIONS AGAINST YOU SET OUT IN THE COMPLAINT BEING ADMITTED AS TRUE AND A DEFAULT JUDGMENT BEING TAKEN AGAINST YOU.

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§157.10 Right to Counsel; Right to Participate

  1. All parties, at their own expense, may be represented by counsel, which right may be expressly waived. Parties are entitled to respond and present evidence and argument on all issues involved, and to conduct cross examinations for full and true disclosure of the facts.
  2. Costs of a transcript of a SOAH proceeding ordered by a party shall be paid by that party. Costs of a transcript of a SOAH proceeding ordered by the judge shall be split equally between the parties.

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§157.11 Contested Cases; Entry of Appearance; Continuance

  1. When a contested case has been instituted, the respondent or the representative of the respondent shall enter an appearance not later than 20 days after the date of receipt of notice of hearing.
  2. For purposes of this section, a contested case shall mean any action that is referred by the Board to the State Office of Administrative Hearings.
  3. For purposes of this section, an entry of appearance shall mean the filing of a written answer or other responsive pleading with the State Office of Administrative Hearings.
  4. The filing of an untimely appearance by a party, or entering an appearance at the contested case hearing entitles the Board to a continuance of the hearing in the contested case at the Board's discretion for such a reasonable period of time as determined by the administrative law judge, but not for a period of less than 20 days. For purposes of this section, an untimely appearance is an appearance not entered within 20 days of the date the respondent has received notice.

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§157.12 Failure to Attend Hearing; Default

  1. SOAH rules regarding Default Proceedings and Dismissal Proceedings apply when a respondent or applicant fails to appear on the day and time set for hearing in a contested case. If a respondent or applicant fails to appear at a contested case hearing, the Board's staff may move either for dismissal of the case from SOAH's docket or for the issuance of a default proposal for decision by the administrative law judge.
  2. If the administrative law judge issues a default proposal for decision or an order dismissing the case from the SOAH docket, the factual allegations included in the notice sent to respondent or applicant are deemed admitted as true and, upon return of the case from SOAH, the Board shall enter a default order against the respondent or applicant.
  3. No additional proof is required to be submitted to the Board before the Board enters the final default order.
  4. The administrative law judge may award reasonable costs to the Board as authorized in §1103.523 and §1104.2132, Texas Occupations Code.

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§157.13 Ex Parte Consultations

  1. A member of the Board may not communicate, directly or indirectly, in connection with any issue of fact or law with any person, party, or their representative except on notice and opportunity for all parties to participate. A member of the Board may communicate ex parte with employees of the Board who have not participated in any hearing in the case for the purpose of utilizing the special skills or knowledge of the Board and its staff in evaluating the evidence.

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§157.14 Informal Disposition

  1. Informal disposition may be made of any contested case by stipulation, agreed settlement, consent order or default. No stipulation or agreed settlement between the parties or their attorneys or representatives, with regard to any matter involved in any proceeding before the Board, shall be enforced unless it shall have been reduced to writing and signed by the parties or their authorized representatives and made a part of the record, or unless it shall have been dictated into the record by them during the course of a hearing or incorporated in an order bearing their written approval.

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Subchapter C Post Hearing

§157.15 Decision

  1. The administrative law judge shall serve on the parties a proposal for decision which shall contain:
    1. a statement of the administrative law judge's proposed reasons for the decision;
    2. findings of fact and conclusions of law, separately stated, that are necessary to the proposed decision; and
    3. a recommendation, separately stated from the findings of fact and conclusions of law, for:
      1. disciplinary action;
      2. an administrative penalty; or
      3. both.
  2. Service. When a decision is prepared, a copy of the decision shall be served by the administrative law judge on each party, the respondent's attorney of record or representative, and the Board. Service of the decision shall be in accordance with §157.9 of this chapter.

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§157.16 Exceptions and Replies

  1. Entitlement. Any party of record who is aggrieved by the administrative law judge's decision shall have the opportunity to file exceptions to the decision within 20 days from the date of service of the decision. Replies to the exceptions may be filed by the other party within 20 days of the filing of the exceptions.
  2. Exceptions and replies shall be filed with the administrative law judge.

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§157.17 Final Decisions and Orders

  1. After a proposal for decision has been issued by an administrative law judge, the Board will render the final decision in the contested case or remand the proceeding for further consideration by the administrative law judge.
  2. The Board is responsible for imposing disciplinary action and/or assessing administrative penalties, if any, against a respondent who is found to have violated any of the Board's statutes or rules. The Board welcomes recommendations from an administrative law judge as to the sanctions to be imposed, but the Board is not required to give presumptively binding effect to the judge's recommendations and is not bound by such recommendations.
  3. If the Board remands the case to the administrative law judge, the Board may direct that further consideration be accomplished with or without reopening the hearing and may limit the issues to be considered. If, on remand, additional evidence is admitted that results in a substantial revision of the proposal for decision, or the underlying facts, an amended or supplemental proposal for decision shall be prepared by the administrative law judge and the provisions of this subchapter shall apply. Exceptions and replies shall be limited to items contained in the amended or supplemental proposal for decision.
  4. The proposal for decision may be acted upon by the Board after the expiration of the applicable time periods for filing exceptions and replies to exceptions, and after the administrative law judge has ruled on any exceptions and replies.
  5. Any party may request oral arguments before the Board prior to the final disposition of the contested case. If the Board grants oral argument, oral argument will be conducted in accordance with this subsection.
    1. The chairperson or the Board member designated by the chairperson to preside (the presiding member) shall announce the case. Upon the request of any party, the presiding member may conduct a prehearing conference with the parties and their attorneys of record. The presiding member may announce reasonable time limits for any oral arguments to be presented by the parties.
    2. Oral arguments on the proposal for decision shall be limited to the record established at the contested case hearing. New evidence may not be presented on the substance of the case unless the party submitting the evidence can establish that the new evidence was not reasonably available at the time of the contested case hearing or the party offering the evidence was misled by a party regarding the necessity for offering the evidence at the contested case hearing.
    3. In presenting oral arguments, the party bearing the burden of proof shall open and close. The party responding may offer rebuttal arguments. Parties may request an opportunity for additional rebuttal subject to the discretion of the presiding member.
    4. After being recognized by the presiding member, the members of the Board may ask questions of the parties. If a party is represented by counsel, the questions must be directed to the party's attorney. Questions must be limited to the record and to the arguments made by the parties.
    5. Upon the conclusion of oral arguments, questions by the members of the Board, and any discussion by the member of the Board, the presiding member shall call for a motion regarding disposition of the contested case. The presiding member may vote on the motion. A motion may be granted only if a majority of the members present and voting vote in favor of the motion. In the event of a tie vote, the presiding member shall announce that the motion is overruled.
  6. Final orders on contested cases shall be in writing and signed by the presiding officer of the Board. Final orders shall include findings of fact and conclusions of law separately stated from disciplinary actions imposed and administrative penalties assessed. Parties shall be notified as provided in Chapter 2001, Texas Government Code. On written request, a copy of the decision or order shall be delivered or mailed to any party and to the respondent's attorney of record.
  7. The Board may change a finding of fact or conclusion of law in a proposal for decision when the Board determines that:
    1. the judge did not properly apply or interpret applicable law, agency rules, written policies provided by staff or prior administrative decisions;
    2. a prior administrative decision on which the judge relied is incorrect or should be changed; or
    3. a technical error in a finding of fact should be changed.
  8. If the Board modifies, amends, or changes a finding of fact or conclusion of law in a proposal for decision, the order shall reflect the Board's changes as stated in the record of the meeting and state the specific reason and legal basis for the changes.
  9. If the Board does not follow the recommended disciplinary action and/or administrative penalty in a proposal for decision, the order shall explain why the Board chose not to follow the recommendation as stated in the record of the meeting.
  10. Imminent Peril. If the Board finds that an imminent peril to the public health, safety, or welfare requires immediate effect on a final decision or order in a contested case, it shall recite the factual and legal basis for its finding in the decision or order as well as the fact that the decision or order is final and effective on the date rendered, in which event the decision or order is final and appealable on the date rendered, and no motion for rehearing is required as a prerequisite for appeal.
  11. Conflict of Interest. A Board member shall recuse himself or herself from all deliberations and votes regarding any matter:
    1. the Board member reviewed as a member of a Peer Investigative Committee;
    2. involving persons or transactions about which the Board member has a conflict of interest;
    3. involving persons or transactions related to the Board member sufficiently closely as to create the appearance of a conflict of interest; or
    4. in which the Board member participated in the negotiation of a consent order.

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§157.18 Motions for Rehearing

  1. Motions for rehearing in proceedings under Chapter 1103, Texas Occupations Code, are governed by §§2001.144 - 2001.147, Texas Government Code, and this section.
  2. Motions for rehearing in proceedings under Chapter 1104, Texas Occupations Code, are governed by §1104.216, Texas Occupations Code, §§2001.144 - 2001.147, Texas Government Code, and this section.
  3. A timely-filed motion for rehearing is a prerequisite to appeal, except as provided in §157.17 of this subchapter.
  4. Replies to a motion for rehearing may be filed as provided in Chapter 2001, Texas Government Code.
  5. A motion for rehearing shall set forth the particular finding of fact, conclusion of law, ruling, or other action which the complaining party asserts caused substantial injustice to the party and was in error such as violation of a constitutional or statutory provision, lack of authority, unlawful procedure, lack of substantial evidence, abuse of discretion, other error of law, or other good cause specifically described in the motion. In the absence of specific grounds in the motion, the Board will take no action, and the motion will be overruled by operation of law.
  6. Any party may request oral arguments before the Board prior to the final disposition of the motion for rehearing. If the Board grants a request for oral argument, oral arguments will be conducted in accordance with this subsection.
    1. The chairperson or the Board member designated by the chairperson to preside (the presiding member) shall announce the case. Upon the request of any party, the presiding member may conduct a prehearing conference with the parties and their attorneys of record. The presiding member may announce reasonable time limits for any oral arguments to be presented by the parties.
    2. Oral arguments on the motion shall be limited to a consideration of the grounds set forth in the motion. Testimony by affidavit or documentary evidence such as excerpts of the record before the presiding officer may be offered in support of, or in opposition to, the motion; provided, however, a party offering affidavit testimony or documentary evidence must provide the other party with copies of the affidavits or documents at the time the motion is filed. New evidence may not be presented on the substance of the case unless the party submitting the evidence can establish that the new evidence was not reasonably available at the time of the contested case hearing or the party offering the evidence was misled by a party regarding the necessity for offering the evidence at the contested case hearing.
    3. In presenting oral arguments, the party filing the motion will have the burden of proof and shall open and close. The party responding to the motion may offer rebuttal arguments. Parties may request an opportunity for additional rebuttal subject to the discretion of the presiding member.
    4. After being recognized by the presiding member, the members of the Board may ask questions of the parties. If a party is represented by counsel, the questions must be directed to the party's attorney. Questions must be limited to the grounds asserted for the motion to be granted and to the arguments made by the parties.
    5. Upon the conclusion of oral arguments, questions by the members of the Board, and any discussion by the member of the Board, the presiding member shall call for a vote on the motion. A member of the Board need not make a separate motion or second a motion filed by a party. The presiding member may vote on the motion. A motion may be granted only if a majority of the members present and voting vote in favor of the motion. In the event of a tie vote, the presiding member shall announce that the motion is overruled.
  7. A decision is final and appealable on the date rendered if:
    1. the Board finds that an imminent peril to the public health, safety or welfare requires immediate effect; and
    2. the Board's decision or order recites this finding and the fact that the decision is final and effective on the date rendered.

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§157.20 Judicial Review

  1. A person who has exhausted all administrative remedies and who is aggrieved by a final decision in a contested case is entitled to judicial review.
  2. The petition for judicial review must be filed in a district court of Travis County, Texas, as provided in Chapter 2001, Texas Government Code.
  3. Pursuant to Texas Government Code, §2001.177, a party seeking judicial review of a final decision of the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board in a contested case shall pay all costs of preparing the original or certified copy of a record of the contested case proceedings.

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Subchapter D Penalties and Other Enforcement Provisions

§157.25 Temporary Suspension

  1. The purpose of a temporary suspension proceeding is to determine whether the continued practice by a person licensed, certified or registered by the Board would constitute a continuing threat to the public welfare. A temporary suspension proceeding is ancillary to a disciplinary proceeding regarding alleged violations of the Act or Board rules and is not dispositive concerning any such violations.
  2. The three Board members of the Enforcement Committee appointed by the chair of the Board shall serve as the disciplinary panel ("Panel") under Texas Occupations Code, §1103.5511 and §1104.211. The chair of the Board shall also appoint a Board member to act as an alternate member of the Panel in the event a member of the Panel is recused or unable to attend a temporary suspension proceeding.
  3. Board staff must request a temporary suspension proceeding in writing by filing a motion for temporary suspension with the Board's general counsel.
  4. The Panel may make a determination regarding a temporary suspension without notice or hearing pursuant to Texas Occupations Code, §1103.5511(c)(1) or §1104.211(c)(1), or may, if appropriate in the judgment of the chair of the Panel, provide the license holder or registrant with three days' notice of a temporary suspension hearing.
  5. The requirement under Texas Occupations Code, §1103.5511(c)(1) or §1104.211(c)(1) that "institution of proceedings for a contested case hearing is initiated simultaneously with the temporary suspension" shall be satisfied if, on the same day the motion for temporary suspension is filed with the Board's general counsel, the licensed, certified or registered person that is the subject of the temporary suspension motion, and the State Office of Administrative Hearings, as applicable, is sent one of the following documents that alleges facts that precipitated the need for a temporary suspension:
    1. Notice of Alleged Violation;
    2. Original Statement of Charges; or
    3. Amended Statement of Charges.
  6. The Panel shall post notice of the temporary suspension proceeding pursuant to §551.045 of the Texas Government Code and Texas Occupations Code, §1103.5511(e) or §1104.211(e) and hold the temporary suspension proceeding as soon as possible.
  7. The determination whether the continued practice by a person licensed, certified or registered by the Board would constitute a continuing threat to the public welfare shall be made from information presented to the Panel. The Panel may receive information and testimony in oral or written form. Documentary evidence must be submitted to the Board's general counsel in electronic format at least 24 hours in advance of the time posted for the temporary suspension hearing in all cases where the Panel will be meeting via teleconference. If a hearing is held following notice to a license holder or registrant, Board staff will have the burden of proof and shall open and close. The party responding to the motion for temporary suspension may offer rebuttal arguments. Parties may request an opportunity for additional rebuttal subject to the discretion of the chair of the Panel. The chair of the Panel may set reasonable time limits for any oral arguments and evidence to be presented by the parties. The Panel may question witnesses and attorneys at the members' discretion. Information and testimony that is clearly irrelevant, unreliable, or unduly inflammatory will not be considered.
  8. The determination of the Panel may be based not only on evidence admissible under the Texas Rules of Evidence, but may be based on information of a type on which a reasonably prudent person commonly relies in the conduct of the person's affairs.
  9. If the Panel suspends a license or certificate, it shall do so by order and the suspension shall remain in effect for the period of time stated in the order, not to exceed the date a final order is issued by the Board in the underlying contested case proceeding. The Panel order must recite the factual and legal basis for imminent peril warranting temporary suspension.
  10. A temporary suspension under Texas Occupations Code §1103.5511 or §1104.211 shall not automatically expire after 45 days if the Board has scheduled a hearing on the contested case to take place within that time and the hearing is continued beyond the 45th day for any reason other than at the request of the Board.
  11. If credible and verifiable information that was not presented to the Panel at a temporary suspension hearing, which contradicts information that influenced the decision of the Panel to order a temporary suspension, is subsequently presented to the Panel with a motion for rehearing on the suspension, the chair of the Panel will schedule a rehearing on the matter. The chair of the Panel will determine, in the chair's sole discretion, whether the new information meets the standard set out in this subsection. A rehearing on a temporary suspension will be limited to presentation and rebuttal of the new information. The chair of the Panel may set reasonable time limits for any oral arguments and evidence to be presented by the parties. Panel members may question witnesses and attorneys. Information and testimony that is clearly irrelevant, unreliable, or unduly inflammatory will not be considered. Any temporary suspension previously ordered will remain in effect, unless the Panel holds a rehearing on the matter and issues a new order rescinding the temporary suspension.

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§157.26 Unlicensed Activity

  1. If the Board receives information indicating that a person has violated Chapter 1103 or 1104, Texas Occupations Code, or Board rules, the Board shall conduct an investigation to determine if such information is accurate. If the investigation produces evidence to indicate a probable violation of Chapter 1103 or Chapter 1104, Texas Occupations Code, or Board rules, the Board may, after notice and an opportunity for a hearing:
    1. impose an administrative penalty;
    2. issue an order to cease and desist; or
    3. take such other action as may be necessary and proper.

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Subchapter E Alternative Dispute Resolution

§157.30 Alternative Dispute Resolution

  1. It is the Board's policy to encourage the fair and expeditious resolution of all formal complaint matters through voluntary settlement procedures. The Board's Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedures are set out in this subchapter, however, the Board encourages the resolution of disputes at any time, whether under this subchapter or not.
  2. ADR procedures may be requested by the Board, a respondent or an applicant any time after the Board initiates a formal complaint against a respondent or denies an application.
  3. This subchapter may apply to a contested case upon unanimous motion of the parties and at the discretion of the administrative law judge. In such cases, it is within the discretion of the judge to grant a continuance of the hearing to allow the use of ADR procedures.
  4. A contingent dismissal is a method of alternative dispute resolution available only at the discretion of the Board and its staff. An administrative law judge may not recommend a contingent dismissal as a method to resolve a contested case.

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§157.31 Investigative Conference

  1. A respondent may meet with the Board for an investigative discussion of the facts and circumstances of the alleged violations.
  2. A respondent may, but is not required to, have an attorney or other advocate present at an investigative conference.
  3. A respondent will be provided with a Statement of Investigative Conference Procedures and Rights (IC Form) not later than three days before the date of the investigative conference. The respondent and respondent's attorney, if any, must acknowledge receipt of the IC Form by signing it and delivering it to the Board at the beginning of the investigative conference.
  4. The Board will provide a copy of the investigative report to the respondent and respondent's representative(s), if any, not later than three days before the date of the investigative conference if respondent and respondent's representative(s), if any:
    1. Submit a written request for a copy of the investigative report not later than five days before the date of the investigative conference; and
    2. Sign the Board's confidentiality agreement prohibiting the re-release of the investigative report without written permission of the Board or a court order.
  5. Participation in an investigative conference is not mandatory and may be terminated at any time by either party.
  6. At the conclusion of the investigative conference, the Board staff may propose a settlement offer that can include administrative penalties and any other disciplinary action authorized by the Act or recommend that the complaint be dismissed.
  7. The respondent may accept, reject, or make a counter offer to the proposed settlement not later than ten (10) days following the date of the investigative conference.
  8. If the parties cannot reach a settlement not later than ten (10) days following the date of the investigative conference, the matter will be referred to the Director of Standards and Enforcement Services to pursue appropriate action.

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§157.32 Negotiated Settlement

  1. The Board staff and the respondent or applicant may enter into a settlement agreement following negotiations at any time without first engaging in an investigative conference.
  2. Negotiations may be conducted in person, by telephone, or through any form of written communication, including email.

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§157.33 Mediation

  1. If a resolution cannot be reached through an investigative conference or negotiated settlement and with the consent of all parties, the Board may schedule an original mediation with SOAH before filing a petition on the formal complaint with SOAH. Mediation will be set for either a four (4) hour or eight (8) hour session, at the discretion of the Board, based on the nature and complexity of the formal complaint. The Board will not refuse any reasonable request for mediation, as determined by the Director of Standards and Enforcement Services. Neither a petition nor a reply is required to be filed with SOAH with an original mediation request.
  2. After the Board files a Request to Docket form for mediation, SOAH will advise the parties of the mediator and the date, time and place for the mediation.
  3. The parties at the mediation must have authority to settle, provided however, all agreements signed by Board staff at the mediation are subject to final approval by the Board.
  4. If the mediator is a SOAH judge, that person will not also sit as the administrative law judge for the contested case hearing if mediation is not successful.
  5. A respondent or applicant participating in a mediation at SOAH will pay one-half (1/2) of SOAH's fee for the mediation directly to the Board before the date of the mediation. SOAH's fee for mediation will be based on the contract rate that SOAH bills the Board for a four (4) or eight (8) hour mediation session as applicable.

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§157.36 Stipulations

  1. When the Alternative Dispute Resolution procedures do not result in the full settlement of a matter, the parties, in conjunction with the mediator if applicable, may limit the issues in a contested case through the entry of written stipulations. Such stipulations shall be forwarded or formally presented to the administrative law judge assigned to conduct the contested case hearing on the merits and shall be made part of the hearing record.

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§157.37 Agreements

  1. Except for contingent dismissals, all agreements between or among parties that are reached as a result of Alternative Dispute Resolution must be committed to writing, signed by the respondent or applicant and a Board staff attorney and submitted to the Board for approval. Once signed by the Board, the agreement will have the same force and effect as a written contract.
  2. If the Board does not approve a proposed settlement, the respondent or applicant will be so informed and the matter will be referred to the Director of Standards and Enforcement to pursue appropriate action.

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§157.38 Confidentiality

  1. Except as provided in subsections (c) and (d) of this section, a communication relating to the subject matter made by a participant in an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedure, whether before or after the institution of formal ADR proceedings, is confidential, is not subject to disclosure, and may not be used as evidence in any further proceeding.
  2. Any notes or record made of an ADR procedure are confidential, and participants, including the mediator, may not be required to testify in any proceedings relating to or arising out of the matter in dispute or be subject to process requiring disclosure of confidential information or data relating to or arising out of the matter in dispute.
  3. An oral communication or written material used in or made a part of an ADR procedure is admissible or discoverable only if it is admissible or discoverable independent of the procedure.
  4. If this section conflicts with other legal requirements for disclosure of communications or materials, the issue of confidentiality may be presented to the judge to determine, in camera, whether the facts, circumstances, and context of the communications or materials sought to be disclosed warrant a protective order or whether the communications or materials are subject to disclosure.
  5. All communications in a mediation between parties and between each party and the mediator are confidential. No shared information will be given to the other party unless the party sharing the information explicitly gives the mediator permission to do so. Material provided to the mediator will not be provided to other parties and will not be filed or become part of the contested case record. All notes taken during the mediation conference will be destroyed at the end of the process.

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Chapter 159 Rules Relating to the Provisions of the Texas Appraisal Management Company Registration and Regulation Act

§159.1 Definitions

  1. AMC–Appraisal management company.
  2. AMC Act–Chapter 1104, Texas Occupations Code, Texas Appraisal Management Company Registration and Regulation Act.
  3. Administrative law judge–A judge employed by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH).
  4. Advertising–A written or oral statement or communication by or on behalf of an AMC that induces or attempts to induce a member of the public to use the services of the AMC, including but not limited to all publications, radio or television broadcasts, all electronic media including email, text messages, social networking websites, and the Internet, business stationery, business cards, signs and billboards.
  5. Applicant–A person seeking to become registered under the AMC Act. This term also includes a person seeking to renew a registration under the AMC Act.
  6. Appraisal firm–An entity that employs appraisers on an exclusive basis and receives compensation for performing appraisals and issuing appraisal reports in its own name.
  7. Appraiser contact–A person designated by an AMC pursuant to §1104.103(b)(6) of the AMC Act to respond to and communicate with appraisers on the AMC's appraisal panel regarding appraisal assignments.
  8. Board–The Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board.
  9. Commissioner–The Commissioner of the Board.
  10. Day–A calendar day unless clearly indicated otherwise.
  11. Federally Regulated Appraisal Management Company–an appraisal management company as defined in §1104.003(b) of the AMC Act.
  12. License–The whole or a part of any Board permit, certificate, approval, registration or similar form of permission required by Chapter 1103 or 1104, Texas Occupations Code.
  13. License holder–A person licensed or registered by the Board under the AMC Act.
  14. Party–The Board and each person named or admitted as a party.
  15. Person–Any individual, partnership, corporation, or legal entity.
  16. Primary contact–A person who meets the definition of "controlling person" in §1104.003 of the AMC Act and is designated by an AMC pursuant to §1104.104 of the AMC Act as the primary contact for all communication between the Board and the AMC.
  17. Respondent–Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the Board, registered or unregistered, against whom any complaint has been made.
  18. SOAH–State Office of Administrative Hearings.
  19. USPAP–Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice.

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§159.3 Appraisal Management Company Advisory Committee

  1. A quorum of the committee consists of two members.
  2. The committee may meet at the call of the chair or upon the request of a majority of its members. The committee shall meet at the request of the Board.
  3. Unless state law or Board rules require otherwise, meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Robert's Rules of Order.
  4. At the end of a term, members shall continue to serve until their successors are qualified.

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§159.4 Exemptions

  1. This chapter does not apply to appraisal management services provided:
    1. for the appraisal of:
      1. commercial property; or
      2. residential properties of more than four units; or
    2. by persons exempted under §1104.004, the AMC Act.
  2. For the purposes of §1104.004 of the AMC Act:
    1. a person exclusively employs appraisers on an employer and employee basis for the performance of appraisals if the person does not also employ appraisers as independent contractors or under any other arrangement;
    2. a person employs not more than 15 appraisers on an exclusive basis as independent contractors for the performance of appraisals if:
      1. the person prohibits the independent contractors from performing appraisals for others; and
      2. the person does not employ more than 15 appraisers as independent contractors at any time;
    3. a subsidiary of a financial institution is not a department or unit within the institution;
    4. an AMC that requires an employee of the AMC who is an appraiser who provided no significant real property appraisal assistance to sign an appraisal that is completed by another appraiser who contracts with the AMC, is not exempt from the registration requirement or other requirements of the AMC Act; and
    5. an AMC has an appraisal panel of not more than 15 appraisers at all times during a calendar year if:
      1. the AMC does not have more than 15 appraisers on its panel at any time; and
      2. an appraiser who has been removed from the AMC's panel is not added back to the panel within 12 months after the date of removal.
  3. A person may solicit prospective panelists in anticipation of acting as an AMC without being registered as an AMC, provided that it is registered prior to forming a panel, accepting an appraisal assignment, or performing any other act constituting an appraisal management service.
  4. For the purposes of the AMC Act, a property is located in Texas if it is located wholly or partly in the state.

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§159.52 Fees

  1. The Board will charge and the Commissioner will collect the following fees:
    1. a fee of $3,300 for an application for a two-year registration;
    2. a fee of $3,000 for a timely renewal of a two-year registration;
    3. a fee equal to 1-1/2 times the timely renewal fee for the late renewal of a registration within 90 days of expiration; a fee equal to two times the timely renewal fee for the late renewal of a registration more than 90 days but less than six months after expiration;
    4. the national registry fee in the amount charged by the Appraisal Subcommittee for the AMC registry;
    5. a fee of $10 for each appraiser on a panel at the time of renewal of a registration;
    6. a fee of $5 to add an appraiser to a panel in the Board's records;
    7. a fee of $5 for the termination of an appraiser from a panel;
    8. a fee of $25 to request a registration be placed on inactive status;
    9. a fee of $50 to return to active status;
    10. a fee of $40 for preparing a certificate of licensure history or active licensure;
    11. a fee for a returned check equal to that charged for a returned check by the Texas Real Estate Commission;
    12. a fee of $20 for filing any request to change an owner, primary contact, appraiser contact, registered business name or place of business;
    13. a fee of $50 for evaluation of an owner or primary contact's background history not submitted with an original application or renewal;
    14. a fee of $20 for filing any application, renewal, change request, or other record on paper when the person may otherwise file electronically by accessing the Board's website and entering the required information online;
    15. any fee required by the Department of Information Resources for establishing and maintaining online applications; and
    16. a fee in the amount necessary to administer section 1104.052(c) of the AMC Act.
  2. Fees must be submitted in U.S. funds payable to the order of the Texas Appraiser Licensing and Certification Board. Fees are not refundable once an application has been accepted for filing. Persons who have submitted a check which has been returned, and who have not made good on that check within 30 days, for whatever reason, must submit all future fees in the form of a cashier's check or money order.
  3. AMCs registered with the Board must pay any annual registry fee as required under federal law. All registry fees collected by the Board will be deposited in the Texas Treasury Safekeeping Trust Company to the credit of the appraiser registry fund. The Board will send the fees to the Appraisal Subcommittee as required by federal law.

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§159.101 Use of Business Name

  1. A license holder must notify the Board, on a form approved by the Board, within 30 days after the license holder starts or stops using a business name other than the name in which the license holder is registered.

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§159.102 Eligibility for Registration; Ownership

  1. For the purpose of certifying to the Board that an applicant has reviewed the owners of the entity as required by the AMC Act and that no such owner has had a license to act as an appraiser denied, revoked, or surrendered in lieu of revocation unless the license was subsequently granted or reinstated, the applicant may rely on the Appraisal Subcommittee's online National Registry database.
  2. If an owner of the applicant has had a license to act as an appraiser denied, revoked, or surrendered, the Board may require the applicant to demonstrate that the owner's license was denied, revoked, or surrendered for a nonsubstantive reason as determined by the Board.
  3. For purposes of this Chapter, a nonsubstantive reason may include, but is not limited to:
    1. mistake; or
    2. failure to comply with technical requirements for renewal.

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§159.103 Applications

  1. An application must be accompanied by one completed and signed Owner/Primary Contact Background History form for the primary contact and each owner of more than 10% of the company.
  2. An application may be rejected if incomplete.
  3. An application may be considered void and subject to no further evaluation or processing if an applicant fails to provide information or documentation within 60 days after the Board makes written request for the information or documentation.
  4. License holders must retain documents establishing ownership for a period of five years from the date the application was filed.

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§159.104 Primary Contact; Appraiser Contact; Contact Information

  1. Contact Information. For purposes of conducting business with the Board and receiving correspondence, service of documents, or notices from the Board, each applicant or license holder must provide the Board with the following contact information for its primary contact and appraiser contact:
    1. mailing address;
    2. phone number; and
    3. email address.
  2. An applicant or license holder must give the Board written notice of any change to the contact information for its primary contact or appraiser contact within 10 days of the change.
  3. If a license holder's primary contact or appraiser contact changes, the license holder must give the Board written notice of the change, including all information required by this section and §1104.103(b)(4) and (6) of the AMC Act, and, if appropriate, documentation that the person is qualified to serve under §1104.104(b) of the AMC Act, within 10 days of the change.
  4. A license holder must give the Board written notice within 10 days if its primary contact or appraiser contact ceases to serve in that role and a qualified replacement is not immediately named. If a license holder's primary contact or appraiser contact ceases to serve in that role and the license holder does not give the Board written notice of a replacement, the license holder will be placed on inactive status.
  5. A primary contact who assumes that role during the term of the registration must provide the Board written consent to a criminal history background check, as required by §1104.102 of the AMC Act. If the person does not satisfy the Board's moral character requirements, the Board will remove the person from its records and the license holder will be placed on inactive status. Such a decision by the Board may be reviewed and reconsidered by the Commissioner if the license holder submits a written request for reconsideration within 10 days of notice that the person does not qualify to serve as primary contact. The license holder will remain on inactive status while the request for reconsideration is pending.
  6. The appraiser contact must hold an active, current license issued by an appraiser regulatory agency within the jurisdiction of the Appraisal Subcommittee.
  7. The Board will send all correspondence and serve all required notices and documents by sending such items to the mailing or email address of the applicant's or license holder's primary contact as shown in the Board's records.
  8. If an applicant or license holder fails to update the contact information for its primary contact or appraiser contact, the contact information for these individuals is the last known contact information provided to the Board and shown in the Board's records.

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§159.105 Denial of Registration or Renewal of Registration

  1. AMCs, persons who own any interest in an AMC, and individuals who act as the primary contact for an AMC must be honest, trustworthy, and reliable. Accordingly, such persons must satisfy the Board of their honesty, integrity, and trustworthiness before a registration may be issued or renewed.
  2. The board deems the following felonies and misdemeanors directly related to the field of appraisal management and suggestive of a lack of the requisite moral character:
    1. offenses involving fraud or misrepresentation;
    2. offenses against real or personal property belonging to another, if committed knowingly or intentionally;
    3. offenses against public administration;
    4. offenses involving the sale or other disposition of real or personal property belonging to another without authorization of law;
    5. offenses involving moral turpitude; and
    6. offenses of attempting or conspiring to commit any of the foregoing offenses.
  3. In determining whether a criminal offense by an applicant, the primary contact, or an owner of any interest in the AMC prevents the issuance or renewal of a registration, the Board will consider the following factors:
    1. the nature and seriousness of the crime;
    2. the relationship of the crime to the purposes for requiring a registration to provide appraisal management services;
    3. the extent to which a registration might offer an opportunity to engage in further criminal activity of the same type as that which the person had previously been involved; and
    4. the relationship of the crime to the ability, capacity, or fitness required to be involved, directly or indirectly, in performing the duties and discharge the responsibilities of AMC.
  4. In determining the present fitness of a person who has committed an offense under this section, the Board will consider the following evidence:
    1. the extent and nature of the person's past criminal activity;
    2. the age of the person at the time of the commission of the crime;
    3. the amount of time that has elapsed since the person's last criminal activity;
    4. the conduct and work activity of the person prior to and following the criminal activity;
    5. evidence of the person's rehabilitation or rehabilitative effort while incarcerated or following release; and
    6. other evidence of the person's present fitness including letters of recommendation from prosecution, law enforcement, and correctional officers who prosecuted, arrested, or had custodial responsibility for the person; the sheriff and chief of police in the community where the person resides; and any other persons in contact with the person.
  5. A person is presumed to lack the requisite moral character if less than two years has elapsed since the offense was committed.
  6. An applicant is presumed to be unfit to perform appraisal management services if the person has violated the appraiser independence standards of Section 129E of the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. §1601 et seq.). This presumption may be rebutted by credible evidence to the contrary.
  7. It is the responsibility of the applicant to the extent possible to secure and provide the Board the recommendations of the prosecution, law enforcement, and correctional authorities, as well as evidence, in the form required by the Board, relating to whether the applicant has maintained a record of steady employment, has maintained a record of good conduct, and is current on the payment of any outstanding court costs, supervision fees, fines, and restitution.
  8. A currently incarcerated individual does not possess the required good moral character.
  9. The primary contact and each owner of more than 10% of the AMC must consent in writing to a criminal history background check at the time the AMC submits an application for registration or renewal.
  10. An applicant must certify it has reviewed each owner of any interest in the applicant and has verified that no person who owns an interest in the applicant has:
    1. had a license or certification to act as an appraiser denied, revoked, or surrendered in lieu of revocation;
    2. the license or certification to act as an appraiser has not been subsequently granted or reinstated; and
    3. the license or certification to act as an appraiser was denied, revoked ,or surrendered in lieu of revocation for a nonsubstantive reason as determined by the Board under §159.102 of this chapter.
  11. An application for registration or renewal of registration that is denied by Standards and Enforcement Services Division staff may be reviewed and reconsidered by the Commissioner if the applicant submits a written request for reconsideration within 10 days of notice of the denial. The right to request reconsideration is distinct from, and in addition to, an applicant's right to appeal an application denial before SOAH.

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§159.107 Expiration

  1. A registration is valid for the term for which it is issued by the Board.

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§159.108 Renewal

  1. The Board will send a renewal notice to the license holder's primary contact at least 180 days prior to the expiration of the license.
  2. To renew a license, a license holder must:
    1. submit an application as required by §1104.103 of the AMC Act; and
    2. pay all applicable renewal fees established in §159.52 of this chapter.
  3. It is the responsibility of the license holder to apply for renewal in accordance with this section sufficiently in advance of the expiration date to ensure that all renewal requirements, including background checks, are satisfied before the expiration date of the license.
  4. Failure to receive a renewal notice from the Board does not relieve the license holder of the responsibility to timely apply for renewal.
  5. An application for renewal is not complete, and no renewal will issue, until all application requirements are satisfied.

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§159.109 Inactive Status

  1. To elect to be placed on inactive status, a license holder must do the following:
    1. file a request for inactive status on a form approved by the Board and pay the required fee; and
    2. confirm in writing to the Board that the license holder has given written notice of its election to go inactive to all appraisers listed on the license holder's appraiser panel at least 30 days prior to filing the request for inactive status.
  2. In order to return from inactive status to active status, a license holder must submit to the Board a completed Request for Active Status form and proof of compliance with all outstanding requirements for active registration.
  3. A license holder that has elected or been placed on inactive status may not engage in any activity for which registration is required until an active registration has been issued by the Board.
  4. The appraiser panel of a license holder on inactive status will remain in place.
  5. A license holder may renew on inactive status. To renew on inactive status, a license holder must satisfy:
    1. all requirements under subsection (a) of this section; and
    2. all renewal requirements for an active registration under §159.108 of this chapter.

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§159.154 Competency of Appraisers

  1. For purposes of §1104.154 of the AMC Act and this section, the term "assignment" means an appraisal assignment. This term does not include an appraisal review assignment.
  2. In addition to verifying an appraiser's licensure as required by §1104.152 of the AMC Act, an AMC must, at the time of or before making an assignment to an appraiser, obtain a written certification from the appraiser that the appraiser:
    1. is competent in the property type of the assignment;
    2. is competent in the geographical area of the assignment;
    3. has access to appropriate data sources for the assignment;
    4. will immediately notify the AMC if the appraiser later determines that he or she is not qualified under paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of this subsection to complete the assignment; and
    5. is aware that misrepresentation of competency is subject to the mandatory reporting requirement in §1104.160 of the AMC Act.
  3. An AMC that has reviewed an appraiser's work must consider the findings of the review in verifying competency for the purpose of assigning future work.
  4. For the purposes of verifying that an appraiser has not had a license denied in another jurisdiction, an AMC may rely on information provided by the appraiser.

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§159.155 Periodic Review of Appraisals

  1. A license holder must review the work of appraisers performing appraisal services on 1-4 family unit properties collateralizing mortgage obligations by performing a review in accordance with Standard 3 of USPAP of:
    1. one of the first five appraisals performed for the license holder by each appraiser, prior to making a sixth assignment; and
    2. a total of five percent, randomly selected, of the appraisals performed for the AMC for each twelve-month period following the date of the AMC's registration.
  2. Appraisals performed pursuant to subsection (a)(1) of this section will be counted toward the calculation of five percent for the purposes of subsection (a)(2) of this section.
  3. A review pursuant to subsection (a)(1) of this section is not required if the first five appraisals by an appraiser were completed before the AMC was required by the AMC Act to be registered with the Board.
  4. In addition to satisfying the requirements of §1104.153 of the AMC Act, the review appraiser must have access to appropriate data sources for the appraisal being reviewed.
  5. An appraiser is qualified to perform an appraisal review within the meaning of §1104.153 of the AMC Act if the appraiser conducting the review:
    1. is licensed or certified to act as an appraiser in Texas or another jurisdiction;
    2. holds the appropriate credential to have performed the appraisal being reviewed; and
    3. does not develop an opinion of value.
  6. An appraiser conducting a review under §1104.155 of the AMC Act and this rule must ensure compliance with:
    1. USPAP; and
    2. §1104.154 of the AMC Act.
  7. In order to satisfy the requirements of §1104.155 of the AMC Act, this rule and USPAP, a license holder performing a review must adhere to the following minimum scope of work:
    1. research and consult the appropriate data sources for the appraisal being reviewed to, at a minimum, validate the significant characteristics of the comparables and the essential elements of the transactions including:
      1. the multiple listing service(s) or other recognized methods, techniques and data sources for the geographic area in which the appraisal under review was performed, if the appraisal under review included a sales comparison approach;
      2. published cost data sources and other recognized methods, techniques and data sources for the geographic area in which the appraisal under review was performed, if the appraisal under review included a cost approach;
      3. the comparable rental data, income and expense data, and other recognized methods, techniques and data sources for the geographic area in which the appraisal under review was performed, if the appraisal under review included an income approach; and
      4. the sales or listing history of the property which is the subject of the appraisal under review, if that property was sold within the three years prior to the effective date of the appraisal under review or listed for sale as of the effective date of the appraisal under review;
    2. state the reviewer's opinions and conclusions about the work under review for each of the approaches to value utilized in the appraisal under review, including the reason for any disagreements;
    3. identify if the appraisal under review omitted an approach to value, a particular piece of information, or an analysis of either that was necessary for credible assignment results, identify what was omitted and explain why it was necessary for credible assignment results;
    4. identify the client, any intended users and the effective date of the appraisal review;
    5. state that the appraisal review's intended use and purpose is to satisfy the requirements of §1104.155 of the AMC Act and this rule, including ensuring that the appraisal under review complies with the USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraisal;
    6. state that the scope of work for the appraisal review is commensurate with the requirements of §1104.155 of the AMC Act, this rule and USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraisal review and that the scope of work ensures the development of credible assignment results and that no assignment conditions impose limitations which make the results of the review not credible;
    7. identify the appraisal under review, including:
      1. any ownership interest of the appraiser or reviewer in the property that is the subject of the appraisal under review;
      2. the report date and effective date of the appraisal under review;
      3. the effective date of the opinions or conclusions in the appraisal under review;
      4. the physical, legal, and economic characteristics of the property, properties, property type(s), or market area in the appraisal under review; and
      5. the name of all appraisers who signed or provided significant professional assistance in the appraisal under review;
    8. state clearly and conspicuously, all extraordinary assumptions and hypothetical conditions and state that their use might have affected the review; and
    9. contain a certification which complies with USPAP Standards Rule 3-6.
  8. While not required by §1104.155 of the AMC Act or this rule, if the reviewer elects to develop an opinion of value, review opinion, or real property appraisal consulting conclusion, the review must comply with the additional provisions of USPAP governing the development of an opinion of value, review opinion, or real property appraisal consulting conclusion.

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§159.156 Business Records

  1. For the purposes of the requirement in §1104.156(c) of the AMC Act regarding retention of written records of substantive communications between an AMC and an appraiser, a communication is substantive if it relates to the appraiser's qualifications or to the scope of work of an assignment.
  2. An AMC may not require an appraiser to keep confidential the existence of the appraiser's business relationship with an AMC or the fact that the appraiser has received any specific assignment from the AMC to perform an appraisal.
  3. A business entity required to register as an AMC must maintain documentation showing that it has complied with the requirements contained in its governing documents for changing officers or managers. The business entity must promptly provide to the Board upon request all business formation, ownership and representative authorization records and changes thereto required to be kept by the business entity by law.
  4. Written records include electronic records.

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§159.157 Compensation of Appraisers

  1. A license holder must compensate the appraisers on the panel based on a compensation policy, established by the license holder, that provides for customary and reasonable fees by taking into consideration the requirements of and any presumptions available under federal law.
  2. A license holder must reassess its compensation policy at least annually and shall retain, for a period of five years, records of all compensation information that formed the basis for the policy.
  3. A license holder must make any fee schedule adopted under its compensation policy available to each appraiser on its panel.
  4. A license holder may not require an appraiser to sign a certification that a fee for an assignment is customary and reasonable.

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§159.159 Disclosure of Registered Name and Registration Number

  1. For the purposes of the AMC Act, "documents used to procure appraisals" include written documents and electronic communications, including e-mail, used for that purpose, but does not include general advertisements and supporting documentation.
  2. On all documents used to procure appraisals, an AMC must disclose the name it registered with the Board, any other name that it uses in business and the registration number received from the Board.

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§159.161 Appraiser Panel

  1. If an appraiser is not employed by the AMC or already a member of the AMC's panel, an AMC must add the appraiser to the AMC's panel no later than the date on which the AMC makes an assignment to the appraiser.
  2. To add an appraiser to a panel, the AMC must:
    1. initiate the appropriate two-party transaction through the Board's online panel management system, including payment of any required fee(s); or
    2. submit a notice on a form approved by the Board for this purpose, including the signatures of the appraiser and the AMC's primary contact, and the appropriate fee(s).
  3. An appraiser or an AMC may terminate the appraiser's membership on a panel by:
    1. submitting a termination notice electronically through the Board's online panel management system, including payment of any required fee; or
    2. submitting a notice on a form approved by the Board for this purpose and the appropriate fee(s).
  4. If an appraiser terminates his or her membership on a panel, the appraiser must immediately notify the AMC of the termination. If an AMC terminates an appraiser's membership on a panel, the AMC must immediately notify the appraiser of the termination.
  5. If an appraiser's license is suspended or revoked, the Board will remove the appraiser from any panels on which the appraiser is listed with no fee charged to the AMC or the appraiser.
  6. If an appraiser's license expires, the Board will:
    1. change the appraiser's license status the month following expiration of the license; and
    2. remove the appraiser from any panels on which the appraiser is listed with no fee charged to the AMC or the appraiser once the license can no longer be renewed.

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§159.162 Dispute Resolution

  1. A license holder must provide a dispute resolution process for appraisers.
  2. The dispute resolution process must provide for either:
    1. review by an external third party; or
    2. internal review by a person whose position within the company is above the level of the person responsible for the decision or action under review.
  3. A license holder's dispute resolution process for appraisers must provide for:
    1. a written response to the request for review;
    2. a written statement of the outcome of the dispute resolution process; and
    3. copies of all relevant documentation to the appraiser upon written request.
  4. An appraiser who is aggrieved under §1104.157 or §1104.161 of the AMC Act must utilize the license holder's dispute resolution process before filling a complaint against the AMC with the Board.

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§159.201 Guidelines for Revocation, Suspension, or Denial of a License

  1. The Board may suspend or revoke a license issued under provisions of the AMC Act, or deny issuing or renewing a license to an applicant, any time it is determined that the person applying for, renewing, or holding the license or the AMC's primary contact:
    1. disregards or violates a provision of the AMC Act or Board rules;
    2. is convicted of a felony;
    3. fails to notify the Board not later than the 30th day after the date of the final conviction if the person, in a court of this or another state or in a federal court, has been convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to a felony or a criminal offense involving fraud or moral turpitude;
    4. fails to notify the Board not later than the 30th day after the date of incarceration if the person, in this or another state, has been incarcerated for a criminal offense involving fraud or moral turpitude;
    5. fails to notify the Board of the following with regard to any professional or occupational license held by the person in Texas or another jurisdiction not later than the 30th day after the date:
      1. disciplinary action becomes final against the person; or
      2. the person voluntarily surrenders any professional or occupational license;
    6. fails to comply with the USPAP edition in effect at the time of the appraisal or appraisal practice;
    7. acts or holds any person out as a registered AMC under the AMC Act or another state's act when not so licensed or certified;
    8. accepts payment for appraisal management services but fails to deliver the agreed service in the agreed upon manner;
    9. refuses to refund payment received for appraisal management services when he or she has failed to deliver the appraiser service in the agreed upon manner;
    10. accepts payment for services contingent upon a minimum, maximum, or pre-agreed value estimate;
    11. offers to perform appraisal management services or agrees to perform such services when employment to perform such services is contingent upon a minimum, maximum, or pre-agreed value estimate;
    12. makes a material misrepresentation or omission of material fact;
    13. has had a registration as an AMC revoked, suspended, or otherwise acted against by any other jurisdiction for an act which is an offense under Texas law;
    14. procures a registration pursuant to the AMC Act by making false, misleading, or fraudulent representation;
    15. has had a final civil judgment entered against him or her on any one of the following grounds:
      1. fraud;
      2. intentional or knowing misrepresentation; or
      3. grossly negligent misrepresentation in the making of real estate appraiser services;
    16. fails to make good on a payment issued to the Board within 30 days after the Board has mailed a request for payment by certified mail to the license holder's primary contact as reflected in the Board's records;
    17. knowingly or willfully engages in false or misleading conduct or advertising with respect to client solicitation;
    18. uses any title, designation, initial or other insignia or identification that would mislead the public as to that person's credentials, qualifications, competency, or ability to provide appraisal management services;
    19. requires an appraiser to pay for or reimburse the AMC for a criminal history check;
    20. fails to comply with a final order of the Board; or
    21. fails to answer all inquiries concerning matters under the jurisdiction of the Board within 20 days of notice to said person's or primary contact's address of record, or within the time period allowed if granted a written extension by the Board.
  2. The Board has discretion in determining the appropriate penalty for any violation under subsection (a) of this section.
  3. The Board may probate a penalty or sanction, and may impose conditions of the probation, including, but not limited to:
    1. the type and scope of appraisal management practice;
    2. requirements for additional education by the AMC's controlling persons;
    3. monetary administrative penalties; and
    4. requirements for reporting appraisal management activity to the Board.
  4. A person applying for reinstatement after revocation or surrender of a registration must comply with all requirements that would apply if the registration had instead expired.
  5. The provisions of this section do not relieve a person from civil liability or from criminal prosecution under the AMC Act or under the laws of this State.
  6. The Board may not investigate under this section a complaint submitted either more than two years after the date of discovery or more than two years after the completion of any litigation involving the incident, whichever event occurs later, involving the AMC that is the subject of the complaint.
  7. Except as provided by Texas Penal Code §32.32(d), there will be no undercover or covert investigations conducted by authority of the AMC Act.
  8. The Board may report to the Appraisal Subcommittee any disciplinary action taken by the Board against an AMC required to register under the AMC Act.

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§159.204 Complaint Processing

  1. Receipt of a Complaint Intake Form by the Board does not constitute the filing of a formal complaint by the Board against the AMC named on the Complaint Intake Form. Upon receipt of a signed Complaint Intake Form, staff will:
    1. assign the complaint a case number in the complaint tracking system; and
    2. send written acknowledgement of receipt to the complainant.
  2. If the staff determines at any time that the complaint is not within the Board's jurisdiction, or that no violation exists, the complaint will be dismissed with no further processing. The Board or the Commissioner may delegate to staff the duty to dismiss complaints.
  3. A complaint alleging mortgage fraud or in which mortgage fraud is suspected:
    1. may be investigated covertly; and
    2. will be referred to the appropriate prosecutorial authorities.
  4. Staff may request additional information necessary to determine how to proceed with the complaint from any person.
  5. As part of a preliminary investigative review, a copy of the Complaint Intake Form and all supporting documentation will be sent to the Respondent unless the complaint qualifies for covert investigation and the Standards and Enforcement Services Division deems covert investigation appropriate.
  6. The Respondent must submit a response within 20 days of receiving a copy of the Complaint Intake Form. The 20-day period may be extended for good cause upon request in writing or by e-mail. The response must include the following:
    1. A copy of the appraisal report(s), if any, that is (are) the subject of the complaint;
    2. A copy of the documents or other business records associated with the appraisal report(s), incident(s), or conduct listed in the complaint, with the following signed statement attached to the response: I SWEAR AND AFFIRM THAT EXCEPT AS SPECIFICALLY SET FORTH HEREIN, THE COPY OF EACH AND EVERY BUSINESS RECORD ACCOMPANYING THIS RESPONSE IS A TRUE AND CORRECT COPY OF THE ACTUAL BUSINESS RECORD, AND NOTHING HAS BEEN ADDED TO OR REMOVED FROM THIS BUSINESS RECORD OR ALTERED. (SIGNATURE OF RESPONDENT);
    3. A narrative response to the complaint, addressing each and every item in the complaint;
    4. A list of any and all persons known to the Respondent to have actual knowledge of any of the matters made the subject of the complaint and, if in the Respondent's possession, contact information;
    5. Any documentation that supports Respondent's position that was not in the original documentation, as long as it is conspicuously labeled as additional documentation and kept separate from the original documentation. The Respondent may also address other matters not raised in the complaint that the Respondent believes need explanation; and
    6. a signed, dated and completed copy of any questionnaire sent by Board staff.
  7. Staff will evaluate the complaint within three months of receipt of the response from Respondent to determine whether sufficient evidence of a potential violation of the AMC Act, Board rules or USPAP exists to pursue investigation and possible formal disciplinary action. If staff determines there is no jurisdiction, no violation exists, or there is insufficient evidence to prove a violation, or the complaint warrants dismissal, including contingent dismissal, under subsection (k) of this section, the complaint will be dismissed with no further processing.
  8. A formal complaint will be opened and investigated by a staff investigator or peer investigative committee if:
    1. the informal complaint is not dismissed under subsection (g) of this section; or
    2. staff opens a formal complaint on its own motion.
  9. Written notice that a formal complaint has been opened will be sent to the Complainant and Respondent.
  10. The staff investigator or peer investigative committee assigned to investigate a formal complaint will prepare a report detailing all findings.
  11. In determining the proper disposition of a formal complaint pending as of or filed after the effective date of this subsection, and subject to the maximum penalties authorized under Chapter 1104, Texas Occupations Code, staff, the administrative law judge in a contested case hearing and the Board shall consider the following sanctions guidelines and list of non-exclusive factors as demonstrated by the evidence in the record of a contested case proceeding.
    1. For the purposes of these sanctions guidelines:
      1. An AMC will not be considered to have had a prior warning letter, contingent dismissal or discipline if that prior warning letter, contingent dismissal or discipline occurred more than ten years ago;
      2. A prior warning letter, contingent dismissal or discipline given less than ten years ago will not be considered unless the Board took final action against the AMC before the date of the incident that led to the subsequent disciplinary action;
      3. Prior discipline is defined as any sanction, including an administrative penalty, received under a Board final or agreed order;
      4. A violation refers to a violation of any provision of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP;
      5. "Minor deficiencies" is defined as violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which do not call into question the qualification of the AMC for licensure in Texas;
      6. "Serious deficiencies" is defined as violations of the Act, Board rules or USPAP which do call into question the qualification of the AMC for licensure in Texas;
      7. "Remedial measures" include training, auditing, or any combination thereof; and
      8. The terms of a contingent dismissal agreement will be in writing and agreed to by all parties. If Respondent completes all remedial measures required in the agreement within a certain prescribed period of time, the complaint will be dismissed with a non-disciplinary warning letter.
    2. List of factors to consider in determining proper disposition of a formal complaint:
      1. Whether the Respondent has previously received a warning letter or contingent dismissal, and if so, the similarity of facts or violations in that previous complaint to the facts or violations in the instant complaint matter;
      2. Whether the Respondent has previously been disciplined;
      3. If previously disciplined, the nature of the discipline, including:
        1. Whether it concerned the same or similar violations or facts;
        2. The nature of the disciplinary sanctions imposed;
        3. The length of time since the previous discipline;
      4. The difficulty or complexity of the incident at issue;
      5. Whether the violations found were of a negligent, grossly negligent or a knowing or intentional nature;
      6. Whether the violations found involved a single appraisal or instance of conduct or multiple appraisals or instances of conduct;
      7. To whom were the appraisal report(s) or the conduct directed, with greater weight placed upon appraisal report(s) or conduct directed at:
        1. A financial institution or their agent, contemplating a lending decision based, in part, on the appraisal report(s) or conduct at issue;
        2. The Board;
        3. A matter which is actively being litigated in a state or federal court or before a regulatory body of a state or the federal government;
        4. Another government agency or government sponsored entity, including, but not limited to, the United States Department of Veteran's Administration, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the State of Texas, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac;
        5. A consumer contemplating a real property transaction involving the consumer's principal residence;
      8. Whether Respondent's violations caused any harm, including financial harm, and the amount of such harm;
      9. Whether Respondent acknowledged or admitted to violations and cooperated with the Board's investigation prior to any contested case hearing;
      10. The business operating history of the AMC, including:
        1. The size of the AMC's appraiser panel;
        2. The length of time Respondent has been licensed as an AMC in Texas;
        3. The length of time the AMC has been conducting business operations, in any jurisdiction;
        4. The nature and extent of any remedial measures and sanctions the Respondent had received related to the areas in which violations were found; and
        5. Respondent's affiliation with other business entities;
      11. Whether Respondent can improve the AMC's practice through the use of remedial measures; and
      12. Whether Respondent has voluntarily completed remedial measures prior to the resolution of the complaint.
    3. The sanctions guidelines contained herein shall be employed in conjunction with the factors listed in paragraph (2) of this subsection to assist in reaching the proper disposition of a formal complaint:
      1. 1st Time Discipline Level 1–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence minor deficiencies will result in one of the following outcomes:
        1. Dismissal;
        2. Dismissal with non-disciplinary warning letter;
        3. Contingent dismissal with remedial measures.
      2. 1st Time Discipline Level 2–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies will result in one of the following outcomes:
        1. Contingent dismissal with remedial measures;
        2. A final order which imposes one or more of the following:
          1. Remedial measures;
          2. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
          3. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
          4. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
          5. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
          6. Minimum of $1,000 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      3. 1st Time Discipline Level 3–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies and were done with knowledge, deliberately, willfully, or with gross negligence will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
        6. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
        7. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
        8. Minimum of $2,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      4. 2nd Time Discipline Level 1–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence minor deficiencies will result in one of the following outcomes:
        1. Dismissal;
        2. Dismissal with non-disciplinary warning letter;
        3. Contingent dismissal with remedial measures;
        4. A final order which imposes one or more of the following:
          1. Remedial measures;
          2. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
          3. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
          4. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
          5. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
          6. Minimum of $1,000 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      5. 2nd Time Discipline Level 2–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
        6. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
        7. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
        8. Minimum of $2,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      6. 2nd Time Discipline Level 3–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies and were done with knowledge, deliberately, willfully, or with gross negligence will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
        6. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
        7. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
        8. Minimum of $4,000 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      7. 3rd Time Discipline Level 1–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence minor deficiencies will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
        6. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
        7. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
        8. Minimum of $2,500 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      8. 3rd Time Discipline Level 2–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A period of suspension;
        2. A revocation;
        3. Remedial measures;
        4. Required adoption and implementation of written, preventative policies or procedures;
        5. A probationary period with provisions for monitoring the AMC;
        6. Monitoring and/or preapproval of AMC panel removals for a specified period of time;
        7. Monitoring and/or preapproval of the licensed activities of the AMC for a specified time period or until specified conditions are satisfied;
        8. Minimum of $4,000 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      9. 3rd Time Discipline Level 3–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP which evidence serious deficiencies and were done with knowledge, deliberately, willfully, or with gross negligence will result in a final order which imposes one or more of the following:
        1. A revocation; and
        2. Minimum of $7,000 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of USPAP, Board Rules, or the Act; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      10. 4th Time Discipline–violations of the AMC Act, Board rules or USPAP will result in a final order which imposes the following:
        1. A revocation; and
        2. $10,000 in administrative penalties per act or omission which constitutes a violation(s) of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
      11. Unlicensed AMC activity will result in a final order which imposes a $10,000 in administrative penalties per unlicensed AMC activity; each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.
    4. In addition, staff may recommend any or all of the following:
      1. Reducing or increasing the recommended sanction or administrative penalty for a complaint based on documented factors that support the deviation, including but not limited to those factors articulated under paragraph (2) of this subsection;
      2. Probating all or a portion of any remedial measure, sanction, or administrative penalty for a period not to exceed three years;
      3. Requiring additional reporting requirements;
      4. Payment of costs expended by the Board associated with the investigation, and if applicable, a contested case, including legal fees and administrative costs; and
      5. Such other recommendations, with documented support, as will achieve the purposes of the AMC Act, Board rules, or USPAP.
  12. Agreed resolutions of complaint matters pursuant to Texas Occupations Code §1104.208(a)(3) must be:
    1. Approved by the Board; and
    2. Signed by:
      1. Respondent;
      2. Respondent's attorney, if respondent is represented;
      3. A representative of the Standards and Enforcement Services Division; and
      4. The Commissioner.

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§159.205 Identity Theft

  1. For purposes of this subchapter, "identity theft" means any of the following activities occurring in connection with the rendition of appraisal management services:
    1. Unlawfully obtaining, possessing, transferring or using a license or license number issued by the Board; or
    2. Unlawfully obtaining, possessing, transferring or using a person's electronic or handwritten signature.
  2. A license holder shall implement and maintain reasonable procedures to protect and safeguard the license holder against identity theft.
  3. A license holder must notify the Board if the license holder is the victim of identity theft within 90 days of discovering such theft. Effective notice may be provided by filing a signed, written complaint on a form prescribed by the Board.
  4. The Board may invalidate a current license and issue a new one to a license holder the Board determines is a victim of identity theft. Any license holder seeking the invalidation of a current license and issuance of a new one must submit a written, signed request on a form provided by the Board for the invalidation of a current license and issuance of a new one. The basis for the request must be identity theft, and the requestor must submit credible evidence that the license holder is a victim of identity theft. Without limiting the type of evidence a license holder may submit to the Board to support a claim of identity theft, a court order issued in accordance with Texas Business and Commerce Code Chapter 521, Subchapter C, declaring the license holder is a victim of identity theft constitutes credible evidence. Any such court order must relate to identity theft as defined in this section.
  5. Engaging in identity theft to perform unauthorized appraisal management services is a violation of this subchapter, which may result in disciplinary action under §159.201. In addition to any disciplinary action taken by the Board, persons engaging in identity theft may also be referred to the appropriate law enforcement agency for criminal prosecution.

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