David Stern

Bradley Cooper: a very handsome man, but sadly not a lawyer.

Seemingly random small-firm lawyers from Alabama weren’t the only legal types in attendance at the White House State Dinner on Tuesday evening. Indeed, as we’ve previously noted, numerous legal celebrities attended the festivities as well.

Sure, there were some “celebrity celebrities” at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue that night. The guest list included such boldface names as J.J. Abrams, Stephen Colbert, Bradley Cooper, Mindy Kaling, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

But who cares about Hollywood? Above the Law readers are more interested in the government lawyers, federal judges, Biglaw partners and law professors who attended this major social event….

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It’s difficult to put into words just how racially divisive the O.J. Simpson trial was. That’s my first excuse for why this post is so bad. For nearly a year and a half, the entire nation was tuned into the trial. An entire constellation of ridiculous people became our first reality stars: the poodle-haired Marcia Clark, smooth-talkin’ Johnny Cochran, n-bomb aficionado Mark Furman, hirsute little person Lance Ito. Or maybe the stars were DNA evidence and reasonable doubt. Because for a year and change, America was riveted by a criminal trial. By lawyers and evidence and rulings and motions and cross examinations. And while we still occasionally watch trials of the century, we don’t do it with near as much vigor as we did when Orenthal James Simpson was indicted. And we definitely don’t break down along nearly the same rigid racial lines.

To put it into terms that current law school students will understand (an overwhelming majority of whom don’t remember the trial), O.J. Simpson was a lot like Justin Bieber. Like, that polarizing.

Let’s talk sports….

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Puppy is sad because you think he has no soul.

* Rick Santorum and the Sweater Vests can join Rick Perry’s ballot access lawsuit in Virginia. It’s funny, because at this rate, Perry will have dropped out before the first hearing. [Washington Post]

* If you’re an unemployed law grad drowning in debt, you should’ve known that you’d be screwed. Warning! Danger, Will Robinson! Opinion does not compute! [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

* Scott Rothstein claims that his firm kept a condo across the street so that partners could bang hookers. If real firms were like this, there would be less partner defections. [Orlando Sentinel]

* One robo-signer to rule them all: David J. Stern, Florida’s dethroned foreclosure king, is being sued by his own company for fraudulent conduct. Oh, how the mighty have fallen. [Bloomberg]

* Do cute, little doggies have souls? Of course they do, but the law doesn’t really conform to animated children’s movies from the eighties. This lawsuit hopes to reveal the truth. [Gothamist]


NBA Commissioner David Stern

* The NBA is suing its players for failing to negotiate in good faith. Funny, I think the players are acting with the same “good faith” NBA owners do when they steal teams from loving fan bases or hold cities hostage until they build new arenas. [WSJ Law Blog]

* Having a drunk woman angrily spray breast milk on you is probably not as alluring as it sounds. [Sentencing Law & Policy]

* In other sentencing news, a guy got six weeks in jail for getting his ass kicked by Rupert Murdoch’s wife. [Gawker]

* This is funny because it’s kind of true. [Washington Fancy]

* To win, sometimes lawyers need to be quiet? Man, am I glad I got out of that racket. [Underdog]

* Lawyers should be happy to know that good writing requires doing it over and over and over again. [What About Clients?]

* The market apparently doesn’t like the debt ceiling deal. [New York 1]

* David J. Stern, the dethroned Florida foreclosure king, will now have to go up against the Florida Bar. Too bad he can’t robo-produce all of the documents they want. [Fort Lauderdale Examiner]

* Peeing on a colleague’s door might have been a great prank in college, but as a professional it’s just sad. Enjoy that $35K bench warrant. [TaxProf Blog]

* Male lawyers work hard and then get a bad rap for not spending more time with their families. Men, do you care more about work/life balance or making money? [The Careerist]

* You can get suspended for doing in law school what transactional attorneys do in real life: borrow from forms. No harm, no foul, because the school recently lost its accreditation. [ABA Journal]

* Folks, it just became a little easier for your clients to buy you dinner. Now all you have to do is press a button, and food will appear. [Gizmodo]

* Dr. and Mrs. Viswanathan — parents of Kaavya Viswanathan, the high-profile Georgetown law student and S&C summer associate — RIP. [New Jersey Newsroom]

Back in September 2010, we bestowed Lawyer of the Day honors upon David J. Stern, aka Florida’s “Foreclosure King.” We noted Stern’s rise into the ranks of self-made millionaires, despite not having attended some fancy first-tier law school. (Stern graduated from the South Texas College of Law, a fourth-tier school.)

We marveled at Stern’s wealth: a $14 million mansion here, a $7 million condo there, Ferraris and Porsches galore, and a 130-foot, $20 million yacht. We noted that Stern, thanks to the success of his booming foreclosure-law practice, was “running financial circles around all those Stanford and NYU law grads who wound up as Biglaw partners.”

Alas, in the past few months, David Stern’s fortunes have taken a turn for the worse….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Is the Florida Foreclosure King Abdicating? David J. Stern Will Close His Law Firm”

* Of shaken babies and unsure verdicts. This long piece in the Times Magazine, by Emily Bazelon, is well worth your time. For those who require a funny take on shaking, there’s always this totally NSFW Chris Rock bit. [New York Times Magazine]

* What do willful violations of antitrust law and not being admitted to the Super Bowl with a valid ticket have in common? Treble damages. [SI.com]

* David Stern got it turned around on him, like a guy who was the foreclosure king and won’t have any need for a strap-on where he’s going. [ABC News]

* Let us celebrate the Green Bay Packers win last night by remembering a more innocent time — a year ago, when viewers of the Super Bowl weren’t eye-raped by the Black Eyed Peas and, instead, eye-caressed by sweet sweet porn. [New York Daily News]

* Speaking of innocent Super Bowl revelry… child prostitution! [Time]

* Raquel Balsam paid too much for her SUNY education and now she says “I pretty much felt cheated on.” Like it got turned around on her… yeah, I’m using that twice. [New York Times]

* Yale law professor Akhil Amar shows Judge Vinson his pimp hand is way strong. [Los Angeles Times]

* AOL has purchased The Huffington Post. AOL, like Radio Shack, refuses to die. [Reuters]

A frenchman cheated on his wife? Sacré bleu!

* It would be much easier more entertaining if Eva Longoria and Tony Parker had to settle their dueling divorce filings with a jump ball. [New York Daily News]

* Duquesne’s law student clothing drive was pathetic, but this just takes the cake. Would you pay an ASU law student’s tuition? [ABA Journal]

* After laying off lawyers, foreclosure supervillain David J. Stern had quit his own company. We sure know how to pick ‘em. [Businessweek; Daily Business Review]

* Personal responsibility fail. Getting lok’d up probably won’t make you insane enough to kill yourself, but this lawsuit says otherwise. [TIME]

* The publisher for America’s Mom dragged Gawker into federal court on a Saturday for a proper spanking over copyright infringement. [Media Coder / New York Times]

* Jimmy McMillan’s $350M lawsuit: the font used by the NY Board of Elections was too damn big to write his full party name on the ballot. [New York Post]

Back in September, we wrote about David J. Stern, “Florida’s Foreclosure King,” who earned our Lawyer of the Day title for his ascendancy from the fourth tier to the lap of luxury. At the time, we sang Stern’s praises. Stern, a graduate of South Texas Law, employs 900 people, made $17.8 million in 2008, owns $60 million in real estate, and collects yachts.

Thanks to the New York Times, we knew back then that Stern may have been a shady character. But we kind of brushed off those pesky little questions about his “ethics” and “questionable practice methods.” I mean, come on, how many lawyers can say that they drive a Bugatti?

Well, maybe we shouldn’t have overlooked these issues so quickly…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “David J. Stern, the Florida Foreclosure King, Is Under Investigation — and Doing Layoffs”

No, we’re not talking about that David J. Stern, the lawyer turned NBA commissioner. We’re talking about David J. Stern of Plantation, Florida, a leading lawyer to banks and financial services companies in mortgage-related and foreclosure proceedings.

Over the holiday weekend, the New York Times ran a lengthy article, by Gretchen Morgenson and Geraldine Fabrikant, focused on Florida’s new foreclosures-only courts. Florida’s court system has been so overwhelmed by foreclosure proceedings that the state earlier this year set aside $9.6 million to establish foreclosures-focused courts around the state, presided over by retired judges.

One of the major players in the new court system is David J. Stern, whom the Times describes as “[t]he lawyer most closely identified with Florida’s foreclosure morass.” And for his troubles, this “mystery man within the foreclosure world” has been richly rewarded — very richly rewarded.

Stern went to a fourth-tier law school, but financially he’s running circles around all those Stanford and NYU law grads who wound up as Biglaw partners. His inspiring story shows that, in the end, success in the law is not about where you went to school, but what you’re capable of doing.

Even if you graduated from a non-top-tier law school, if you’re aggressive and smart and entrepreneurial, you can do quite well for yourself. Let’s take a look at David Stern….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Lawyer of the Day: David J. Stern, Fourth-Tier Law Grad Turned Multimillionaire”