Novice Florida lawyers draw suspicion in foreclosure mess

From the Palm Beach Post.

Nearly half of those working at the state’s four largest foreclosure firms have practiced law for less than three years.

Recently out of law school and looking for work, scores of young Florida attorneys found steady paychecks in burgeoning firms whose business is based on repossessing the American dream.

Today, more than 260 attorneys work at four of Florida’s largest foreclosure firms, and 48 percent of them have been practicing law for less than three years, according to Florida Bar records obtained by The Palm Beach Post.

Of 156 attorneys who started the year churning out foreclosures at the massive Plantation-based operation of David J. Stern but have since left or been laid off, half had been practicing law for less than four years.

With this fall’s allegations of forged foreclosure documents, fraudulent notarizations and questionable affidavits submitted in tens of thousands of foreclosure cases, those nascent lawyers are now under a cloud of suspicion.

Some may face Florida Bar investigations that could end their careers, while homeowner advocates wonder whether the foreclosure crisis would have reached its state of disorder if it weren’t for legions of novice lawyers doing the legwork.