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Some states require auctioneer continuing education (CE) — and auctioneers complete it or lose their licenses to practice. Some state auctioneer associations offer optional CE and auctioneers complete it or not, with no real immediate consequences if they don’t.

It’s about this simple, or at least I thought it was until I heard that the “best” way to deliver CE to auctioneers was through state associations, suggesting that this was better than states requiring it. Of course, associations could (and do) offer state-mandated CE …

The inherent problem with not requiring CE for auctioneers is many auctioneers avoid it. Isn’t it better if auctioneers have a continuum of education as they practice their craft? Isn’t it better if auctioneers are apprised of current trends, new technology, new case law …?

Apparently not, if the suggestion that optional CE is better. It’s not better. However, if a state has no license law, it’s difficult if not impossible to mandate CE. Yes, most auctioneers are free market, conservative, libertarians but wouldn’t a better-educated auctioneer be a better free market, conservative-libertarian?

Many auctioneers are in charge of others’ personal and real property, having access to homes, farms, and businesses with keys and security codes, and most importantly collecting monies raised from selling other people’s assets. Yet, they are entitled to be as uneducated as they desire to cite their desire for less government regulation?

We testified about this issue in Indiana several years ago and noted there appeared to be a distinct pattern from our work as an auction expert witness: https://mikebrandlyauctioneer.wordpress.com/2019/06/03/auctioneer-licensing-and-auction-lawsuits/. Less education (schooling, CE) results in more litigation.

Auctioneer education is paramount for every auctioneer — busy or not — who may engage a client and need the most current, up-to-date information to serve that client the best he or she can. No personal political (or other) holding trumps the agency duties owed a client.

Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, CAI, CAS, AARE has been an auctioneer and certified appraiser for over 30 years. His company’s auctions are located at Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, Brandly Real Estate & Auction, and Goodwill Columbus Car Auction. He serves as Distinguished Faculty at Hondros College, Executive Director of The Ohio Auction School, and an Instructor at the National Auctioneers Association’s Designation Academy and Western College of Auctioneering. He has served as faculty at the Certified Auctioneers Institute held at Indiana University and is approved by The Supreme Court of Ohio for attorney education.