Ira Hatch fraud saga: How does his family still live like millionaires?

VERO BEACH — While former attorney Ira Hatch is considered indigent inside the courthouse, Margaret “Marjorie” Hatch, his wife during the period for which he is now on trial, continues to live in a million-dollar riverfront house in Castaway Cove and somehow pays bills running $12,000 a month with only Hatch’s $1,500-a-month Social Security as declared income.

How is this possible? Well, what we know of this intriguing tale comes from financial affidavits filed by Ira and Marjorie Hatch when they sought a quickie divorce last December in Brevard County, where they presumably hoped details might not quickly make it back to Vero Beach.

The now ex-Mrs. Hatch filed for divorce from her husband of 29 years on Dec. 14th, complete with an agreed to marital settlement under which she kept all of the family’s assets and Ira assumed the liabilities, and the court accepted the terms three days later on Dec. 17th.

After the divorce was recorded by the court in January, financial affidavits filed by Ira and Marjorie Hatch were stored at a red-brick, former elementary school repurposed as a court archive in Titusville. Those records were uncovered this past week by Vero Beach 32963.

With Ira Hatch representing himself in the divorce and his wife represented by a Melbourne attorney, the divorce appears to be an attempt to sever Marjorie Hatch from her now former husband’s business dealings, from the outcome of his criminal trial and possibly subsequent civil suits.

As part of the settlement, Ira Hatch, in his financial affidavit notarized by defense attorney Gregory Eisenmenger, listed only his Social Security check as income, with no assets. Under contingent liabilities, he checked off two boxes — one listed as “various business creditors, $4,000,000” and one as “IRS Debt, $400,000” – and also appears to have agreed to assume responsibility for $50,000 of the couple’s credit card debt.

It was not clear whether the $4 million in “various business creditors” are the former depositors in Coastal Escrow Services and clients of Hatch & Doty, P.A., or some other people to whom Hatch owes large sums of money. He was known to be involved in a real estate development project in Orlando.

Marjorie Hatch, on the other hand, wound up with the couple’s home in Castaway Cove — which she has argued was purchased with money from her family and is therefore not subject to seizure by the state or creditors – as well as a $90,000 Individual Retirement Account balance, $30,000 described only as “Disney,” $5,000 labeled “PNC” and a 2003 GMC Yukon SUV worth $4,000, the same vehicle from which client files were seized by the Vero Beach Police Department following her husband’s arrest.

The financial affidavit, however, made no mention of the $215,000 that Marjorie obtained in October 2007 – when she and her attorney persuaded Judge Dan Vaughn to release $200,000 in the Hatch family’s bank accounts and $15,000 from a safety deposit box which had been frozen by authorities. Marjorie Hatch claimed at the time that money was solely hers, and not subject to her husband’s business dealings.

Since then, continuing to live in a house with a mortgage requiring monthly payments of $5,600, helping support a son attending a pricey private college out of state as well as a daughter until recently in law school, then preparing for the daughter’s wedding this past March, that money appears to be gone. And although Ira Hatch’s bookkeeper last week testified that she saw a check, a copy of which was entered into evidence in the criminal trial, made payable to a beachside jeweler for a $22,000 Rolex watch – a gift to Marjorie Hatch from her husband – Marjorie Hatch does not list that or any other jewelry in financial statements in the divorce either.

So is Marjorie Hatch now living on her husband’s $1,500 Social Security checks?

That would appear to be a good question, given that she says she is unemployed and in view of the magnitude of expenses itemized in the records. Records show she has a $5,600 a month mortgage payment and spends $750 per month for taxes and insurance.

Her electric runs about $1,000 per month and she uses some $300 per month of gasoline. She listed $500 per month for groceries and household items, $100 per month for cosmetics and toiletries, $50 per month for grooming and $50 per month for pet food.

Under the section detailing expenses for children, Marjorie Hatch disclosed an outflow of $1,250 per month for son Rory’s college tuition and $166 per month for his travel expenses, $333 per month for books, $250 per month for Rory’s allowance.

She said she spends $233.00 per month for life insurance, $50 for prescriptions, $33 per month on newspaper and magazine subscriptions, $20 on entertainment and $100 on vacations. All of this adds up to about $150,000 per year.

While Danielle Hatch has now finished her education at the University of Florida law school (cost $22,000 per year), brother Rory, 21, the youngest of the Hatch kids, is still an undergrad at Rice University in Houston, a private school that costs $40,000 annually for out-of-state students.

Meanwhile, the Hatchs’ daughter, now Danielle Eisenmenger, is living with her new husband, Kristofer – the son of the man defending her father — in Gainesville. Both are now public defenders in Alachua County.

Their wedding website included links to their bridal registry which sought numerous pricey items like fine china and kitchen gadgets. Ironically, the same week that their fathers were in jury selection to decide whether or not Hatch stole millions in down payments and deposits, the newlyweds closed on a two-story house near a golf course.

The groom, Kristofer Eisenmenger, wrote on May 28 on his Facebook page, “I’m now a homeowner . . . crazy.”

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