Real New York sues Compass agents for breach of contract

The brokerage is seeking $900,000 from its former agents; Compass is not named as a defendant

Robert Rahmanian, Louis Adler, Lyndsey Casagrande, Kenny Fung and Robert Reffkin (Getty)
Robert Rahmanian, Louis Adler, Lyndsey Casagrande, Kenny Fung and Robert Reffkin (Getty)

Two Compass agents are in hot water with their former brokerage.

Real New York is suing former agents Lyndsey Casagrande and Kenny Fung, alleging breach of contract and misappropriation of its confidential information, according to the complaint filed last week in a New York court.

The firm accuses its former agents of continuing to use leads and confidential information from its company files and data as they do business at Compass — and soliciting Real New York’s clients to move with them.

Real New York also claims that Casagrande and Fung recruited four of its other agents to join them at Compass. The brokerage, which was founded by brokers Louis Adler and Robert Rahmanian in 2013, seeks a $900,000 money judgement from the two agents. Compass is not named as a defendant.

Casagrande, Fung and Compass declined to comment. Neither Adler, Rahmanian nor their lawyer immediately responded to requests for comment.

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Though Compass is not directly implicated in the case, several of the complaint’s allegations — particularly breach of contract and stealing trade secrets — have been leveled against the brokerage before. Agents who left other brokerages for Compass are frequently named as co-defendants in these cases.

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Last week, a Christie’s International Real Estate affiliate based in Ridgewood, New Jersey sued Compass and four agents for breach of contract and misappropriation of confidential company information. Compass was named in the suit for unlawfully encouraging the agents to violate the terms of their contract.

In April, Howard Hanna sued Compass for allegedly encouraging three of its agents in Pennsylvania to breach their contracts, specifically their non-compete, non-solicitation and confidentiality provisions, by switching brokerages. Days later, The Agency sued Compass over its own non-solicitation clauses, claiming that the brokerage was illegally preventing one of its agents from recruiting her former Compass colleagues to join her.

The accusations are nothing new. Beginning in 2016, Compass began taking pains to defend itself by requiring new hires to sign an agreement defining the proprietary, confidential data that belongs to its competitors and threatening disciplinary action if they bring it with them.