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What Do You Think About Credit Answers and Prestige Financial Solutions? – Jim

“Dear Steve,

I have about $60,000 of credit card debt and have contacted Credit Answers and Prestige about their work out programs. i have also contacted and communicated with Money Management International.

As you know the former negotiate with the creditors, and claim to work out a program where i would pay off somewhere between 25% and 50% of the debt, along with fees to them in the area of 12% to 15%, i have read many negative comments about these folks where people were more than dissatisfied and in come cases got no results and no return communication. with Money Management International, they get my interest rate reduced, and i would be clear of debt within about 4 years. they seem and sound legitimate.

first question, do you have a point of view regarding the above? second question, do you have any input you could share about Money Managenemt International? Third question, why would my creditors not negotiate a workout directly with me, and thus I avoid the 3rd party involvement.

Thank you Steve, and i look forward to your response.

Jim”

Don’t miss our free Get Out of Debt – “How To” Guide Series on a number of topics, for loads of practical advice, tips, and help to beat back debt. – Click Here

The Answer

Dear Jim,

I took a quick look at CreditAnswers and Prestige Financial Solutions and was not thrilled by what I saw. The first thing on CreditAnswers that caught my eye was the TASC disclaimer link at the bottom of the site that talks about all the bad stuff that can happen to you in a debt settlement plan was grayed out. I also found their comments against bankruptcy to be completely misleading.

Consumers may now be required to file Chapter 13, which requires you to pay back a portion of your debt under the supervision of the court. This process may last for years. – Source

Nice statement, and how long does debt settlement take, yep, years.

And with all the marketing information on the site I only found one tiny little mention of what happens if you go into a debt settlement program and don’t pay your creditors.

If you fail to make payment to your creditors, they may take legal action against you. – Source

When I get more time I’ll have to come back and do a full blown review on this site. Not happy with it at all. And you know what is bad, when the marketing company CreditAnswers hires, sues them. CreditAnswers lawsuit by Marketing Architects, Inc.

Now, let’s look at Prestige Financial Solutions for a moment. At first glance their site is less troublesome but they did a horrible job of glossing over the fact you can be sued in the debt settlement program.

Creditor lawsuits are NOT COMMON they do happen. – Source

Just remember that a credit counseling group, like MMI, does not actually negotiate with your creditors and has no control over the terms a creditor offers. You should read The Truth About The Failure Rates and Completion Rates of Credit Counseling, Debt Settlement, and Bankruptcy.

Your creditors will speak directly with you but reduced terms are really only available to people that have demonstrated they have a hardship and once you do that it impacts your credit. Even a credit counseling program can impact your credit. When you go into a credit counseling program the cards included are closed and that severs your history with those cards.

Big Hug!

What Do You Think About Credit Answers and Prestige Financial Solutions?   Jim
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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
  • olivia phillips

    i just join prestige iwas in debt management progman and got about twenty thousand pay off now iowe a  twens s tty thousand most of my debt was some rans up cards on the computer town and country was thousand  prestige is four hundred and sixty one amonth ii was hoping this was my this was right way for me  im 72 years old can credit be sued

  • Jlpeg50

    i’m thinking about going with them also , so how are they. my email jlpeg50@aol.com

  • Jim Morales

    I just researched this company here is what I found. First of all they have an “A” rating with the BBB. That in itself is an acomplishment given the ratings of most debt settlement companies.

    http://www.bbb.org/denver/busi

    Second according to their website and documents I recieved from them that DO NOT take their fees upfront but instead base their fees off of the savings after they reach a settelment.

    http://www.prestigefinancialso

    Third I checked with the California Southern District Court and the law suite in question mentioned above was dismissed on 11/19/2010 Pursuant to LR 55.1.

    http://www.casd.uscourts.gov/c

    All in all I have NOT found any crediable evidence that can be verified that this company is not exactly what they claim to be and I plan on signing up with them.

  • Jim Morales

    I just researched this company here is what I found. First of all they have an “A” rating with the BBB. That in itself is an acomplishment given the ratings of most debt settlement companies.

    http://www.bbb.org/denver/business-reviews/credit-debt-consolidation-services/prestige-financial-solutions-in-westminster-co-90011049

    Second according to their website and documents I recieved from them that DO NOT take their fees upfront but instead base their fees off of the savings after they reach a settelment.

    http://www.prestigefinancialsolutions.com/

    Third I checked with the California Southern District Court and the law suite in question mentioned above was dismissed on 11/19/2010 Pursuant to LR 55.1.

    http://www.casd.uscourts.gov/calendar/sabraw/1119.pdf

    All in all I have NOT found any crediable evidence that can be verified that this company is not exactly what they claim to be and I plan on signing up with them.

    • Jlpeg50

      i’m thinking about going with them also , so how are they. my email jlpeg50@aol.com

  • Current Client

    Just to set the record straight in regard to this “law suite” against Prestige Financial Solutions. Check with the California Southern District Court you will find that the “suite” was Dismissed on 11/19/2010 Pursuant to LR 55.1.

    Also you should do your research because they do not take up-front fees and base their cost of service based on the savings “after” each settlement has been reached.

  • Former Settlement Coach

    Former Settlement Coach..
    What I said in the past is true and accurate however each Bank is different. It all depends on how bad they want their money. BOA, Wells Fargo, Chase are a done deal. If your debt reached to a point and it’s at a attorney’s office CA cannot help you. They have a girl name Melissa (leasbian) she is very cocky. She knows her stuff but then when you least expected she will turn into a man. ()()()() If you people don’t believe me call them and just ask them. They just fired Fred Rameriz who was the manager over there. That is the latest news. Oh ya Hyde & Swigart if you want me to testify I will happy to do that is their $$$ involve upfront. I have all the documents you would need. I can get even get more. I still have friends in low places.

  • http://Website Fomer Employee of Credit Answers

    Hello Again
    Credit Answers is a fraud when I used to work there. We had people coming in and out of the office. This is just to get the company going and selling it off. The COO is Craig Rogers what a a**hole. He thinks he is right all the time. He will tell everybody in a meeting one thing then all of the sudden he will change his mind. What’s so funny is his TL (Team Lead) are so freaking scared of him they will piss in their pants. One of his Settlement VP already left because of him. She was very nice. Now they got another name Julie Gostic she thinks she know everything. She came from some sorry town husband Richard Gostic works for Home Depot in McKinney, Texas (what a loser). Anyway she has her own business called Mosquitonix she even doesn’t know about that.
    I will keep informing everybody about Credit Answers because I was wrongfully discharge. I get all the insight for this company. They just firing people left and right. You have the owner Bill Loughbourgh he is something. He likes to hit on everything that walks in that office. I know one time this girl that they hired was going to work. But she had big boobs and like to flirt. That caught the eye of Craig Rogers and Bill. Boy she got in really quick into the door. Apparently, she didn’t work out few months later..(wonder why.
    I get all the access at CA and they don’t know about it. Last year the dumb ass Bill spent more money then what he made. So people if you have a account with CA and want to get out of it read my story above. Please don’t do business with them…My job is to bring them down like they brought me down. I worked hard for the company and in return they screwed me over. My father always told me.. “You can bend over backwards for a person… But in return.. if he wants to get rid of you he will Fire you in a second…” Another thing the company is for sell $10million. All those employee who sucks ass I wonder where are they going… Haha..Hey Julie Gostic get your fogger going their is a lot of mesquito you need to kill.. You dumb blonde

    • David Leimbach

      To Former Employee of Credit Answers:

      My name is David Leimbach; I’m an attorney with Hyde & Swigart. Our firm currently has a class action against CreditAnswers for defrauding California consumers. While we probably could not help you with your wrongful discharge, I would be very interested in speaking with you as a potential witness in our class action. If you would be so willing, please contact me at 619.233.7770.

      • Former Settlement Coach

        Former Settlement Coach..
        What I said in the past is true and accurate however each Bank is different. It all depends on how bad they want their money. BOA, Wells Fargo, Chase are a done deal. If your debt reached to a point and it’s at a attorney’s office CA cannot help you. They have a girl name Melissa (leasbian) she is very cocky. She knows her stuff but then when you least expected she will turn into a man. ()()()() If you people don’t believe me call them and just ask them. They just fired Fred Rameriz who was the manager over there. That is the latest news. Oh ya Hyde & Swigart if you want me to testify I will happy to do that is their $$$ involve upfront. I have all the documents you would need. I can get even get more. I still have friends in low places.

      • Current Client

        Just to set the record straight in regard to this “law suite” against Prestige Financial Solutions. Check with the California Southern District Court you will find that the “suite” was Dismissed on 11/19/2010 Pursuant to LR 55.1.

        Also you should do your research because they do not take up-front fees and base their cost of service based on the savings “after” each settlement has been reached.

  • http://www.mrosbornelaw.com Matthew R Osborne

    I am a consumer protection attorney. I currently have a lawsuit going against Prestige Financial Solutions (case # 10-1153-MER, bankruptcy court, district of colorado). If anyone has any information about their prior dealings with Prestige Financial Solutions, it would be of great help to me.

    I have received numerous complaints about this company from many clients and would not recommend using them.

  • jim

    so steve:

    i assume you are telling me what “former settlement coach” submits is not accurate, as it does not seem that you agree with his solution, that of not paying credit card debt, awaiting a letter, and then settling for some fraction of debt owed. if valid, it is a route i would seriously consider. so please tell me what problem(s) you have with his suggestion and his solution to his problem.

    i do not know that i want to do bankruptcy, and if i did, chapter 13 is the only one i would consider. i have assets, i have an IRA which i continue to use as a source of funds, it’s just that the constant monthly payments to the credit cards is strangling me. i continue to pay for my son’s college education expenses-ivy league so quite expensive even after aid. i am current on all accounts. i do not want to kill all of my credit cards and banking relationships. i am just looking for relief of the monthly agony. i merely want to settle on 3 of the outstanding balances, as the interest rates are exorbitant, and i have no relationship with these 3. i cannot get ahead or even with what the monthly finance charges are.

    thanks.

    jim

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      JIm,

      Taking money out of a creditor protected account, the IRA, is not wise at all. Search the site and you’ll find many articles about that. Maybe this one will do the trick.

      See my issues in my previous comment and go talk to a bankruptcy attorney before you do anything.

      I think you believe that debt settlement won’t really screwup your credit, you are wrong.

      Steve

  • jim

    steve:

    no i do not have credit score issues, just excess debt. i am current on all payments.

    are the comments from “former settlement coach” accurate, that i can just stop paying and wait for the 3rd party collector to enter the picture? and is it true to your knowledge that the card companies will settle for .20 or .30 or .40 on the dollar? and if true, what are ramifications, as in credit score, etc.

    again, thanks, steve.

    jim

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Jim,

      Delinquent accounts will tank your credit score. Current offers to settle will be based on the policies at that time you can come to a meeting of the minds with your creditor. You will need lump-sum payments on hand to settle and if settling the debt leaves you solvent you will be taxed on the forgiven debt above the point where you become solvent and owe income tax on that amount. Also, you can be sued by a creditor when you become delinquent and you will have to deal with collection pressure.

      Before you become delinquent you should, and I’d like to say must, meet with a local bankruptcy attorney to understand what bankruptcy would mean for you. Under bankruptcy you can’t be sued, there is no tax implication, there is no collection activity, and your credit can easily be rebuilt after bankruptcy.

      Steve

  • http://getoutofdebt.org/16613/what-do-you-think-about-credit-answers-and-prestige-financial-solutions-jim Former Settlement Coach

    I use to work there. They fired me, the company tells people that they can settlement your debts on pennies. But the company found out that the Chase and BOA will not settle with the any company. The company took a big hit and they are looking for excuse to let go people. VP is Julie Gostic a real A-hole. She is so fake with her want a be professionalism. She does’nt know s#$T she came from some Mosquito place business. Have no clue about the debt settlement company. With in one year their was two VP. So people you can do it yourself. Here is the run down.

    1) Don’t pay your c/c. Once its 6months past due the debt will go to 3rd part collections agency. That’s where you want them to go. Then the 3rd party will send you a letter then you can offer them to settle for .30 or .40. However, if it’s BOA you need to catch it on the 5th month from the last payment you made. Then give them some lame excuse (got laid off or had surgery) then they will settle for .20 to .30 gurantee. Chase will settle for .40.

    If you are currently a client and want a refund they will not give you a refund. You have 10 days after your contract. What you need to do is to file with BBB that’s the only way you will get a refund. You can get all your money back. They have and A-hole name Rick Burton will take over the case. You can fight with him and get all your money back. They will resolve your case and give you your money back. They just don’t want no complaints on BBB.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Did you work for CreditAnswers or Prestige?

      Steve

      • David Leimbach

        Steve:

        I haven’t spoke with this person (although I would love to as a potential witness), but Rick Burton is General Counsel for CreditAnswers, so he/she most likely worked there.

        HTH

    • david Leimbach

      My name is David Leimbach; I’m an attorney with Hyde & Swigart. Our firm currently has a class action against CreditAnswers for defrauding California consumers. I would be very interested in speaking with you as a potential witness in our class action. If you would be so willing, please contact me at 619.233.7770.

  • jim

    i immediately went to lending club site, applied, and was turned down.

    jim

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Jim

      Hum, it sounds like you might have some credit score issues already.

      Steve

      • jim

        steve:
        as i told you yesterday lending club rejected me, and you suggested hum i might have credit score issues. is a 704 credit score an issue and too low to qualify with these folks? i was under the impression that was a rather good score. if you could let me know about that, or any other suggestions for gap financing that my credit score would permit, i would be appreciative.

        i still do not understand, will working with MMI damage my credit score? and do you suggest i consider working with them, inasmuch the credit card debts will not be reduced or worked out at a lower payoff, but there is rate relief, so they tell me with specific quotes.

        i feel as if i am meandering in a mine field, and searching for the other side. BK is not an option i can afford to do.

        thanks.

        jim

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Jim,

        The minimum score for LendingClub.com is 660 so either your score has dropped recently or there must be some other issue going on. You’d have to contact them for an explanation.

        There is no other gap financing I am aware of.

        33% of your credit score is based on your continuous credit history. The DMP will sever that. See the last two paragraphs of my original answer.

        You say bankruptcy is not an option you can afford to do but are you talking about the cost of it or something else?

        The only debt solution that gives you any assurances, protection, is legally binding and protects you from lawsuits is bankruptcy. Everything else is a crapshoot.

        I’m curious, if you can afford a credit counseling payment you can afford the minimum payments on your credit cards. What is the issue here, you don’t want to pay or you can’t pay?

        Steve

  • jim

    thanks for your response steve, but still i don’t completely get it. how might i demonstrate hardship to my creditors, short of not paying what i owe monthly? i have worked hard to have a good credit score, and am anxious about losing that. how might working with MMI impact my credit score? and more importantly, are they more “real” than all the frauds out there? is it reasonable that they get my interest rates reduced? can i expect them to be successful in getting those rates reduced? and lastly, is there any way that i can get my credit card creditors to talk with me about dealing with “hardship”? this morning, i spoke with capital one, and they refused to do anything, including reducing my rate.

    thanks again, and i look forward to your thoughts.

    jim

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Jim,

      This is going to be a non pain, no gain exercise. The way you demonstrate hardship with the creditors is by falling behind. Credit counseling does not lock in rates, since it is a voluntary program with the creditors they can certainly change your rates or sell your account along the way.

      Credit counseling does not hurt your credit, like I said when you go into a credit counseling program the creditors are going to close your credit card accounts. This will mean that 30% of your credit score, your open account and good performance will be amputated. No creditor is going to cut rates and let you keep using the card.

      Do you have good credit? How much credit card debt do you have?

      Steve

      • jim

        steve:

        yes i have excellent credit, never late on a payment, though excess credit card debt being carried on the order of $70,000. i am ok with creditors closing my account, as i am not planning to submit all my accounts to MMI. i need to keep credit available, and will do so with my other cards.

        i was under the impression from MMI that they would lock me into lower rates, and they quoted specifics to me, such as Chase-6%, Barclays-6%, and Capital One-7.4%. but you are telling me they cannot achieve this?

        jim

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Jim,

        What I’m telling you they have absolutely no control over those rates. These are what the creditors state they will give but they can be changed at anytime. At one point the rates used to be 0%. Credit counseling is not a binding solution like bankruptcy. Credit counseling is not a pick and choose exercise. Be careful.

        Take a look at another question I answered today and see if that sounds more like your situation. “What is the Best Way to Pay Off Our Debt? – MG

        Steve

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