Archive for October 29th, 2013

David Stern to be Disbarred … Yawn.

A Florida judge has recommended the disbarment of David Stern.  This is a good thing, I suppose, and a long time coming.  But if this is how the Stern story ends, then color me disappointed.

David Stern made hundreds of millions of dollars representing banks in foreclosure lawsuits throughout Florida.  Not a decent living.  Not hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Hundreds of MILLIONS of dollars.

As business got good (for him – awful for everyone else), he systematically thumbed his nose at the courts, as the Report explains.  Basically, it was too inconvenient for Stern to do things like notarize documents correctly, return phone calls of homeowners trying to save their homes, or be honest with our courts.  Now, The Florida Bar has spoken, and it seems clear Stern will never practice law again.

This might sound like justice for some – and many of my colleagues in the foreclosure defense arena are characterizing it as such.  For me, though, this rings hollow.

Take a look at the Report.  For all of these misgivings, Stern is looking at paying less than $60,000.  For you or me, that’s a lot of money, but when you’ve just made hundreds of millions of dollars, as Stern did, it’s pocket change.  Where’s the justice in that?

Think about it this way …

How many lawyers do you think, right now, would gladly give up their license to practice law for $100 million?  $50 million?  Perhaps a better question – how many lawyers would turn that down?  If this is all that happens to Stern – disbarment, and a $60,000 fee, then who’s the winner here?  Call me crazy, but I say it’s David Stern.

It doesn’t have to be this way.  The report reflects Stern committed crimes, not just Bar violations.  And the Bar proved it by clear and convincing evidence.  Here’s hoping this Report gets the attention of law enforcement officials and that Stern faces stiffer punishment than losing a law license that he didn’t need any more anyway.



Mark Stopa

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