A Coral Springs-based attorney accused of misconduct while pursuing thousands of cases against Florida insurance companies should be found guilty and suspended from practice for two years, a referee recommended after an eight-day trial.


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The state Supreme Court has final say for how Scot Strems will ultimately be punished. The Florida Bar, which petitioned for an emergency suspension that began on June 9, argued that Strems should be disbarred.

Property insurers saw the Strems suspension and trial as vindicating their often-voiced stance that misconduct by a dozen or so law firms, which they call “bad actors,” are abusing the court system by bombarding insurers with lawsuits that drive up insurance costs for consumers.

Strems Law Firm P.A., they say, is among a dozen or so firms operating as lawsuit mills that target insurers, often without the knowledge of property owners named as plaintiffs, to generate lucrative legal fees worth many times more than the home repairs in dispute.

Strems’ firm, which employed 20 attorneys in six offices across the state, filed 8,756 suits against property insurers before his emergency suspension. Of them, nearly 5,000 were filed in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties.

The Oct. 8 recommendation by the referee in the proceedings against Strems, Judge Dawn Denaro of the 11th Judicial Circuit in Miami, followed a trial that lasted from Sept. 8 to 16.

Denaro found in September that the Bar had proven Strems and his firm violated 11 rules that govern attorneys’ behavior in the state. They include a rule barring attorneys from engaging in dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation, or from knowingly filing evidence known to be false.

Strems also violated rules requiring attorneys to represent clients with reasonable diligence and promptness, Denaro found.

Between 2016 and 2018, Strems’ firm had about 700 cases “which

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JOHANNESBURG, Oct 12 (Reuters)South Africa’s rand firmed slightly on Monday, clinging to the previous week’s gains spurred by hopes for the conclusion a stimulus package in the United States.

At 1500 GMT the rand ZAR=D3 was 0.14% firmer at 16.4750 per dollar compared to an close of 16.4975 on Friday in New York.

The expectations of stimulus in the world’s largest economy have provided a welcome boost for the rand by weakening the dollar .DXY and boosting appetite for risk-sensitive currencies.

Traders, however, warned that the cheer was thinning. On Friday, President Donald Trump offered a $1.8 trillion coronavirus relief package in talks with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – moving closer to Pelosi’s $2.2 trillion proposal.

A holiday in the United States kept volumes thin and traders cautious of any big bets.

Locally, anticipation ahead of Thursday’s address in parliament by President Cyril Ramaphosa, in which he has promised to outline the government’s economic recovery plan, has also kept trading on the cautious side.

Treasury is set to publish its medium term budget (MTBPS) in two weeks time.

“The rand continues to average around R16.50/$ this quarter, in line with our forecasts, and will be subject to volatility, with risks around the MTBPS, Moody’s, S&P and Fitch country reviews and global financial market sentiment,” said Annabel Bishop of Investec.

Bonds firmed, with the yield on the benchmark 2030 paper ZAR2030= down 6 basis points to 9.435%.

In the equities market, the Johannesburg All Shares index .JALSH closed 0.67% firmer at 55,552 points while the Top-40 index .JTOPI climbed 0.74% to 51,158 points.

Leading the gainers was troubled retailer Steinhoff SNHJ.J, which continued to rise after it said on Friday discussions about a $1

Emerging from a former industrial wasteland, a series of towering structures promise the most affordable housing units built in one New York development since the 1970s. In a plan reminiscent of Brooklyn’s Starrett City, Hunters Point South will eventually have 5,000 apartments across multiple towers, creating a new neighborhood for New Yorkers of all income levels.

In the current phase of construction, developer TF Cornerstone is adding 1,194 rental units in two new buildings, 719 of which will be affordable. The pair joins the first two towers built on site in 2015 by Related Companies, which include a combined 925 units.

Located along the western Queens waterfront, the mega-project sits alongside the second phase of Long Island City’s newest gem: Hunters Point South Park.

Completed in 2018, the 11-acre landscape is now a central part of life in the neighborhood, with hundreds of locals and tourists pouring into the park everyday. It also serves as an ecologically resilient buffer against future storm surges, and will eventually help protect the 11 new buildings that, when finished, will fill out the southernmost point of Long Island City.

Stretching from 50th Avenue to 57th Avenue where the East River meets Newtown Creek and over to Second Street, the development stems from a Bloomberg-era initiative to create over 5,000 rental units with 60 percent affordable housing for low- to moderate- and middle-income residents.

For decades, the 30-acre area was overgrown with plants, weeds and hundreds of trees that made up a dense waterfront woodland. It was an urban adventurer’s paradise, created from the rubble of demolished industrial buildings, including a Daily News printing plant and the National Sugar Refinery.

After Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg left office, the New York Economic Development Corporation managed the build-out of the second and final phase of Hunters Point

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JOHANNESBURG, Oct 8 (Reuters)Struggling state-owned agricultural lender Land Bank has asked South Africa for an extra 10 billion rand ($603 million) of government support over the next few years.

Land Bank, which has already had a 3 billion rand state cash injection in the 2020/21 fiscal year, has been in talks with creditors since it defaulted on its debt in April.

“We have proposed R7 billion in 2021/22, and R1 billion per annum for the following three financial years for development,” Land Bank told Reuters in an emailed response to questions.

Land Bank is also planning an asset reduction programme, it said in a presentation to parliament this week.

State firms have been a long-term drain on the finances of Africa’s most industrialised economy, requiring bailouts at a time of weak economic growth which have helped to tip its sovereign credit rating into “junk” status.

South Africa’s National Treasury said last month that the Post Office, public broadcaster SABC and state-controlled airport operator ACSA were seeking a combined 10 billion rand in bailouts.

Meanwhile, South African Airways is under a form of bankruptcy protection and may be granted further bailouts at a mid-term budget due this month.

($1 = 16.5904 rand)

(Reporting by Alexander Winning Editing by Nqobile Dludla and Alexander Smith)

(([email protected]; +27 10 346 1076))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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President Trump’s cutting back on campaign commercials in some of the key Midwestern battlegrounds that helped him win the White House four years ago – and shifting resources to a bunch of crucial swing states further south.

The president’s re-election campaign has dropped roughly $2 million in ad reservations in Michigan and Wisconsin since last month, according to Advertising Analytics , Medium Buying, and Kantar Media’s Campaign Media Analysis Group , three leading ad tracking firms. Trump narrowly won the two states in 2016, breaking a quarter century long winning streak by Democrats.


The Trump campaign is also currently dark on local TV in Ohio and Iowa, two states he convincingly flipped from blue to red four years ago. And the re-election team is chopping approximately $5 million from its fall TV budget in Minnesota, a state that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton narrowly won in 2016 but that the president was targeting this year.

The Trump campaign’s moving its money south.

Pointing to what he called a “sun belt strategy,” Advertising Analytics vice president John Link told Fox News that “over the last month, the president’s moved $22 million out of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, and Ohio – and its added $19.8 million to the swing states of Florida, Georgia, Arizona, and North Carolina.”

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s campaign is currently running ads in the Midwestern states where the Trump campaign is cutting back. And in recent weeks the former vice president’s team has boosted its ad buys in both Iowa and Ohio, which were not considered competitive states at the beginning of the 2020 cycle.

The move by the Trump campaign comes as the Biden campaign entered September with a massive $141 million cash on