Keller Williams is facing yet another lawsuit
Keller Williams Realty, Gary Keller, co-founder, and other top brokerage executives, such as Marc King, are now facing another lawsuit.
Plaintiffs Colleen Basinski and Bart Basinski filed the latest complaint Thursday evening at the U.S. District Court Western District of Texas Austin Division.
The Basinskis, former Keller Williams market centre owners in Illinois, Indiana, and a part owner of a third in Southern California, are suing Keller’s brokerage for six counts tortious interference. They are seeking more than $1 million in damages for lost income.
The lawsuit claims that the plaintiffs were subject to constant pressure from Keller, King and co-defendants Dan Holt (who is the regional director for Keller William’s Mid America Region) and Colette Chuing (the regional director for Southern California), to change their business operations despite the parameters in their franchise agreement and to adhere to Keller’s plans to lower market centers caps in 2020.
Because they were afraid of repercussions, the Basinskis agreed to follow Keller’s market caps plans. According to the filing, this included threats to “terminate, decline renewal of the market centre’s licensing, takeaway high-grossing agents and place them into competing markets and subservient market centres, and other oppressive actions to ensure that market center caps were lowered.”
The suit also alleges that KWRI and Keller ordered King Holt and Ching to end their Plaintiffs’ association and investments in the market centers as a retaliation for Plaintiffs refusing to accept the unlawful directives to lower market center caps.
Paul Omodt, a Basinskis spokesperson, said: “We are beginning to get a better picture of how Keller Williams Realty operates which isn’t pretty and requires further scrutiny. There is a clear pattern emerging of Gary Keller’s illegal schemes to change franchise agreements, devalue businesses, pressure tactics and character assassination. Keller Williams Realty is yet another story.
The lawsuit also claims that Colleen Basinski is specifically targeted because of her association with John Davis, former CEO Keller Williams.
Davis has recently filed a lawsuit seeking $300 million in damages. He claims that he was forced from his position to resign and to sell Keller Williams’ market centers at a reduced price because of a dispute with Keller about his market center business strategy.
According to the filing, Colleen basinski was terminated from the Orland Park Market Center team leader position because of her association and friendship with Davis.
Omodt stated that “Colleen, and Bart, are incredibly hardworking people who used systems and tools established by John Davis and found great success themselves, their agents, and ultimately Gary Keller.” “They refused to be manipulated and lost millions by Keller and his associates. This case aims to rectify this situation, not just for Colleen or Bart but also for other market center operators who were forced into a similar situation.
Darry Frost, Keller Williams spokesperson, wrote in an email that he had received a request for comment. Darry Frost stated that Basinski’s self-released statements revealed that they had filed a lawsuit. We have no further comment as the complaint has not been served and it does not appear to be publically available.