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Former 'Foreclosure Mill' Offshoot to Lay Off 116

bizjournals.com | May 4, 2014

By Eric Snider

Ronald R. Wolfe & Associates — the offspring of Florida Default Group, an accused foreclosure mill caught up in the robo-signing scandal of 2010 — has filed a WARN notice with the State of Florida indicating it will lay off 116 workers from late May through mid-June.

Florida Default Group, which at its peak had more than 1,000 lawyers and staff, was investigated by the Florida Attorney General’s office for robo-signing and other sloppy work in 2010, but the case was dropped.

In January of 2012, Ron Wolfe, who had worked at Florida Default, bought it from majority owner Michael Echevarria and renamed it Ronald R. Wolfe and Associates.

In late 2012, the firm had about half the number of personnel it employed during the foreclosure boom.

On April 1, the website 4closurefraud.org released a letter dated March 15 from Bank of America to Ronald R. Wolfe and Associates. The letter “authorized the withdrawal of the Ronald R. Wolfe and Associates PL as its counsel” for a cache of foreclosure cases, replacing them with McCalla Raymer LLC.

A letter from Wolfe to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said the layoffs, “due to unforeseen circumstances,” would occur at two locations in Tampa, including its main office at 4919 Memorial Highway, and one in Miami. Nineteen attorneys will be let go, the letter said, as well as 24 case management specialists. The rest of the layoffs are spread over a variety of jobs, including four “hearing specialists” and two “closers.”

A call to Wolfe’s office is pending return.

 

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