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AGO 1955 No. 64 - April 20, 1955
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Don Eastvold | 1953-1956 | Attorney General of Washington

REAL ESTATE ‑- SALESMEN ‑- TEMPORARY PERMITS

The director of licenses may issue a temporary salesman's permit to an applicant for a real estate salesman's license who has never before had a temporary permit but has previously failed an examination for a license.

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                                                                   April 20, 1955

Honorable Della Urquhart
Director
Department of Licenses
Transportation Building
Olympia, Washington                                                                                                                Cite as:  AGO 55-57 No. 64


Dear Mrs. Urquhart:

            We are in receipt of your letter requesting an opinion from this office on the following question: May the director of licenses issue a temporary salesman's permit to an applicant who has never before [[had]]a temporary permit but has previously failed an examination for a real estate salesman's licenses?

            In our opinion the director may, but need not, issue such a permit.

                                                                     ANALYSIS

            RCW 18.85.150 (1953 Supp.) provides in part as follows:

            "The director may issue a temporary salesman's permit pending examination, to any applicant who, in his opinion, is qualified, except for the examination provided for in this chapter, * * * Such temporary permit shall be valid only until the results of the next examination for licensees are available which in no event shall be longer than six months.  The director, however, shall not require any such applicant to take such examination until at least sixty days  [[Orig. Op. Page 2]] have elapsed after the issuance of the temporary permit.  Only one temporary permit shall be issued to any one person.  * * *"

            In a previous opinion this office ruled that an applicant who had failed an examination for a salesman's license could not subsequently be issued a temporary permit, since his failure demonstrated that he was not "qualified".

            OAG 1945-46, page 524 [[to Harry C. Huse, Department of Motor Vehicles on January 3, 1946]].  The section of the statute was amended in 1953 but the only change which may be material to your inquiry was the addition of the sixty day provision.  It seems clear that the significant language in understanding the intention of the legislature is the following quotation from the cited statute:

            "The directormay issue a temporary salesman's permit pending examination, to any applicant who, in his opinion, is qualified, except for the examination * * *" (Emphasis supplied)

            The legislature could not have more plainly stated that complete discretion in granting or denying a permit rests with the director.  An applicant who has failed a salesman's examination might convince the director that, notwithstanding his failure of the examination, he is qualified.

            Accordingly we advise that the director may, but need not issue a temporary real estate salesman's permit to an applicant who has previously failed a real estate salesman's examination.  To justify the issuance of such a permit there should be some evidence to support the finding of qualification.  To the extent that this opinion may conflict with the previous opinion of this office on this subject, OAG 1945-56, page 524 [[to Harry C. Huse, Department of Motor Vehicles on January 3, 1946]], is hereby modified.   We hope the foregoing analysis will prove helpful.

Very truly yours,

DON EASTVOLD
Attorney General


ANDY ENGEBRETSEN
Assistant Attorney General

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