The Steven J. Baum law firm, the awful New York foreclosure mill whose employees threw that homeless-themed Halloween party, is closing down just a month after pictures of the party were published by the New York Times. Bwahahahahahahahahaha.
Sweet, life-sustaining schadenfreude. After the Times published those pictures of Baum employees gleefully mocking down-on-their-luck homeowners at a super fun Halloween party, mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac cut Baum off. Last week, Steven J. Baum himself sent Joe Nocera, the Times columnist who first published the pictures, a pathetic email claiming that Nocera’s column destroyed his firm: “There is blood on your hands for this one, Joe… I will never, ever forgive you for this.”
Of course, Nocera’s column was just the final straw. According to the Long Island Bankruptcy Blog, Baum filed “more foreclosure proceedings against New York homeowners than any other attorney in New York’s history.” How did he do it? By filing error-filled “robo-signed” documents, and using shady tactics that one Long Island judge likened to something out of the “Twilight Zone.” Last month, Baum paid a $2 million fine to settle a Federal case accusing the firm of filing misleading papers to rush along foreclosures. That burden, along with their new tainted status, was apparently too much for the law firm.
So, that’s delightful. But it’s still sort of strange that, after years of screwing over homeowners it took some tasteless Halloween costumes to bring down Baum. Lesson to foreclosure law firms: Be awful on the inside.