May 14, 2021


equality opinion

Missing Attorney Mitch Kossoff’s Mother Accuses Him of Forgery

  • Lawyer Mitchell Kossoff used dozens of legal professionals, paralegals and authentic-estate investigators.
  • But he’s absent lacking, and his consumers and lenders say he owes them millions.
  • His 94-calendar year-old mother explained in a Thursday filing that he forged her signature to borrow $3 million.
  • See much more tales on Insider’s enterprise page.

Prosecutors and customers and employees of Mitchell Kossoff have been inquiring two thoughts a great deal recently: In which is he? And where’s the money?

Kossoff, a longtime New York true-estate attorney who utilized about two dozen lawyers and even much more paralegals and investigators at his firms Kossoff PLLC and Tenant Tracers, vanished before this thirty day period as lawsuits by lenders piled up. Three shoppers saying to be owed $8 million have even tried out to power him into individual bankruptcy.

On Thursday, his have mother, Phyllis Kossoff, joined the fray.  

“I am 94 yrs previous and have been the victim of a horrible fraud,” she wrote in an April 29 affidavit, detailing how her signature was forged on more than $3 million of borrowing agreements.

Her lawyer David Bolton explained the proof was powerful that Mitchell Kossoff solid his mother’s signature. Not only is her son currently being hounded by collectors, but the “unbiased” notaries who attested to Phyllis Kossoff’s signature all do the job for Kossoff, he wrote.

Kossoff is also under investigation by the Manhattan District Attorney’s workplace and the US Attorney for the Japanese District of New York, according to his own attorney, Mack, and other resources familiar with the investigations. Louis Giordano, one former shopper, claimed individuals at Kossoff’s business have trafficked in rumors about exactly where he may perhaps be, but no 1 has clear responses.

Kossoff has represented massive landlord consumers which includes Icon Realty, Stellar Administration and Stonehenge NYC, in accordance to information stories and an archived edition of his firm’s now-removed web-site.

One particular of the major teams of creditors pursuing Kossoff are customers who had hundreds of thousands of bucks in escrow with his company. They declare that Kossoff frequently held on to their money longer than was required, or that he paid out it out in increments. On April 12, numerous of Kossoff PLLC’s financial institution accounts — with JPMorgan Chase, Valley Nationwide Lender and Signature Financial institution — were being frozen by a New York point out choose.

“He was suggested by a good friend,” claimed Giordano, who employed Kossoff for a offer and mentioned in a court docket filing that he and his spouse are owed $250,000. “I did my due diligence, checked him out. He seemed to have a great reputation…I was as stunned as every person else, sad to say.”

It really is not just clients who are on the hook. Legal professionals at Kossoff’s firm have claimed they are not receiving paid, and some have resigned considering that he disappeared, Law360 documented. One particular previous staff at Kossoff’s business advised Insider that his accounting always did seem to be a little suspect: he only issued shell out stubs after a quarter, and he paid workers by producing checks from a ledger book, the former employee said.

In modern months, court records advise that Kossoff designed use of service provider cash progress businesses, which are in essence payday lenders for businesses. The revenue is just not technically a loan, but an advance versus long run receivables that comes at a superior price tag. Phyllis Kossoff’s allegedly solid signature appeared on documents submitted by one these types of corporation, Capital Stack LLC.

Requested where by Mitchell Kossoff is, his lawyer Walter Mack is mum. “I’m not going to inform you the place he is or what he is, besides he is represented by us,” Mack instructed Insider.