The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act is a law that requires key disclosures in real estate settlements. It also prevents kickbacks and referral fees from lenders to agents. Finally, it precludes brokerages from forcing clients to use a brokerage's preferred mortgage and title services. Sections 8 and 9 are often the most relevant to agents. This address the terms of kickbacks, fee splitting, unearned fees, and mandatory service provider usage.
RESPA is the commonly used acronym for the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.
RESPA prevents real estate agents and brokerages from forcing a buyer or seller from working with a specific title insurer or lender. It also prevents these agents and brokerages from receiving kickbacks for referrals for loans. This is important because many brokerages also offer these services. In those cases, a client cannot be forced to use a brokerage's title and mortgage services. But the client can of course elect to do so on their own.