Landlords Seeking Millions from Real Estate Attorney who Disappeared

Published by The Real Deal | April 8, 2021

Lawsuit, judgments of confession filed against Mitchell Kossoff

Three more landlords have come forward with claims that real estate attorney Mitchell Kossoff owes them hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Kossoff, the managing partner of Kossoff PLLC, has been unreachable by his partners at the firm and his clients, The Real Deal reported on Wednesday, April 7. His disappearance has raised questions about the whereabouts of his clients’ millions.

Now, one lawsuit and two judgments of confession have been filed in New York State Supreme Court against Kossoff and his eponymous law firm. That’s in addition to a separate lawsuit, previously reported by TRD, that accuses the firm of “potentially criminal acts” that constitute a “grievous breach” of its duties.

Kossoff PLLC did not respond to a request for comment.

The second lawsuit was filed by SSM Realty Group, an investment firm in Huntington, New York, and accuses Kossoff’s firm of breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty. According to the complaint, the firm transferred $2 million to Kossoff PLLC, to be held in escrow, as it attempted to close on a Greenwich Village property located at 17 Gay Street. The company loaned an additional $300,000 to the law firm and Kossoff.

In February, according to the complaint, SSM requested that Kossoff return at least $1.5 million of the funds held in escrow, but the attorney allegedly declined to do so. In March, Kossoff returned $700,000 to the plaintiff, but has recently gone silent.

“Since that time [Kossoff] became increasingly difficult to track down, failed to return the remainder of the escrow funds, and ultimately stopped communicating with Plaintiff as of April 1, 2021,” per the complaint.

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