I have witnessed countless foreclosure trials in South Florida in which defense attorneys either consent to judgment or agree not to contest the trial, in exchange for a 90 day sale date. However, this “extended” sale date is something they very well could have gotten if they tried the case and lost! I’ve seen hundreds more in which the homeowner was not even represented or his attorney was a no-show. Out of the hundreds of foreclosure trials I have witnessed so far, only one other was properly defended by a competent attorney. I get calls all the time from people who tell me their lawyer didn’t show up at trial or that they took a consent judgment, only the client never knew about the trial, much less consented! This is outrageous and I’m determined to do something about it.
I’ve been very fortunate to have an extensive background in litigation. It started early. I grew up in a family full of lawyers and judges. My father would tell us trial stories around the dinner table on a regular basis. When preparing for trials and depositions, he’d ask us to serve as mock jurors and witnesses to help him fine tune his approach. This was a huge and very enjoyable part of my childhood memories. In high school, I spent school years, and summers in between, competing in team debate. It was the opportunity of a lifetime to travel around the country putting the cross examination, witness evaluation, and persuasive argument techniques I learned from my father into practice. I also learned from my brilliant debate partner who had a knack for passionately arguing while somehow always managing to keep a laser focus, and calm and very likeable, genuine demeanor. In law school, I focused my curriculum on litigation related topics. I always knew I was grooming myself for trial work. It was just something within me. I remember having dreams of courtroom drama with me comfortably in the middle of the fray. My first jury trial out of law school only confirmed, what was in my gut, was meant to be. After a seven day trial against Wal-Mart, my law partner and I beat the odds. The jury came back with the seventh largest verdict in Broward County that year.
Trial work has seemingly become a lost art form. Most civil and criminal cases settle. Even lawyers that want to litigate have less and less opportunity to hone their craft. The bigger issue is that the great majority of lawyers are petrified of trials, don’t know where to start, or are just not interested. Law school alone does not teach us nearly enough to be competent trial lawyers. There are magic words, catch phrases, chunking of ideas, and ordering of certain procedure and preliminary questions that no one seems to teach. I was fortunate to have great mentors and attend numerous workshops and seminars that taught me this trial “code.” When you know it, and speak the language the judges are listening for, it can make all the difference in the world.
I’ve spent a great portion of the last 16 years litigating. There’s almost nothing about the practice of law that I like more than trial work. It’s nerve wracking, exciting, and full of drama. It’s my passion. Foreclosure work has given me an opportunity, like no other area of the law to serve others while also litigating numerous cases. However, I did not get to my comfort level as a litigator by myself. I had a lot of help and still regularly work with others in an effort to continually improve. So with that in mind, in addition to serving our clients in foreclosure defense, debt defense, student loans, real estate, and bankruptcy, we are now offering to help other lawyers better serve their clients through our first, of hopefully many, Foreclosure Trial Workshop.
More on my background and experience: Evan M Rosen Credentials