Real Estate Law
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Hi Kenny: As a last resort, you will have to sue the sellers And have the court order The escrow agent to refund your earnest money. This is usually done in a small claims court without a lawyer. Sometimes the escrow agent will make the decision to refund the earnest money because they know that they will be involved in the lawsuit. Some states have a statute where the escrow agent can send the sellers a letter telling them that the agent will release the money to a buyer or seller unless the other party files suit themselves. That usually works because the other will not want to loose more time and money by going to court when they know that they do not have a case. I don't believe that Hawaii has such a statute. The agent will know for sure.
I agree. $10,000 is more than most small claims jurisdictions. Your agent should know the statutes that apply to earnest money deposits. I was unable to find one using an on line search. It may be an administrative regulation governing real estate brokers, so call the Hawaii Real Estate Commission. https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=hawaii%20real%20estate%20commission. Other than that, you will have to consult a local real estate attorney for the answer.