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'Robo-signing' Attorney David J. Stern Hit with 17-count Bar Complaint

bizjournals.comApril 19, 2013

By Paul Brinkmann

It took two years, but the Florida Bar has finally dropped a doozey of a complaint against former foreclosure king David J. Stern.

The 80-page complaint includes 17 counts or charges that Stern violated the Bar’s rules of professional conduct. The Bar alleges that Stern failed to properly supervise lawyers and non-lawyers at his firm and failed to halt regular violations of Bar rules.

Stern became known as the “foreclosure king” when his law firm in Plantation swelled to gigantic size during the foreclosure crisis in 2006. He was a lead attorney for home mortgage provider Freddie Mac and other big banks.

But accusations flooded the Florida Bar and local courts about false or inaccurate documents in those cases. Stern’s offices closed, and he laid off thousands of employees.

Attempts to reach Stern or his attorneys were not immediately successful on Thursday. Following is a summary of the Bar’s complaint:

Stern promoted attorneys Beverly McComas and Miriam Mendieta, and nonlawyer Cheryl Samons to manage employees in his office. While case volume sky-rocketed, he boosted their salaries to a range of $200,000 to $600,000.

Stern knew or should have known that Mendieta and McComas failed to make reasonable efforts to ensure that the office and its lawyers were complying with bar rules.

Stern’s lack of supervisory oversight contributed to many allegations of misconduct, including many judicial referrals to the Bar, including:

  • Missed hearings, trials, other court proceedings
  • Improperly executed documents and motions in foreclosure cases, or improperly notarized documents
  • Hundreds of attorneys handling thousands of mortgage foreclosure files with substandard administration, direction, supervision, oversight or control
  • Thousands of pending foreclosure cases and clients left without proper representation

Stern failed to make reasonable efforts to ensure the professional conduct of those handing the firm’s files.

Stern failed to take sufficient steps to prevent wrongdoing by the firm’s employees despite the multiple allegations of misconduct, such as backdating or changing dates on documents.

Stern either knew or should have known that inaccurate and/or improperly executed documents were regularly being provided to courts and took insufficient action to investigate the activity or to stop or prevent the improprieties.

Back to April 2013 Archive

CFLA was founded by the Nation's Leading Foreclosure Defense Attorneys back in 2007 to serve the Foreclosure Defense Industry and fight pervasive Bank Fraud. Since opening our virtual doors, CFLA has rapidly expanded to become the premier online legal destination for small businesses and consumers. But as the company continues to grow, we're careful to hold true to our original vision. For us, putting the law within reach of millions of people is more than just a novel idea—it's the founding principle, just ask Andrew P. Lehman, J.D.. With convenient locations in Houston and Los Angeles, you can contact Our National Account Specialist and General Manager / Member Damion W. Emholtz at 888-758-2352 for a free Mortgage Fraud Analysis or to obtain samples of work product, including cutting edge Bloomberg Securitization Audits, Litigation Support, Quiet Title Packages, and for more information about our Nationally Accredited and U.S. Department of Education Approved "Mortgage Securitization Analyst Training Certification" Classes (3 days) 24 hours for approved CLE & MCLE Credit (Now Available Online).

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