i had over 88,000.00 in unsecured credit card dept and i got a letter from an orginization called legal helpers dept resolution that knew about my situation and how much i owed and they said they could cut the dept in half.i checked them out by their law firm name macy,aleman,hyslip & searns and they had a B rating with the BBB.i decided to use them and they said their fees would be 15% of the dept.they set it up to take payments out of my acct.
i was under the understanding that the first payments towards my dept would happen after 6 months.i did settle with one card co. a few months ago,but l.h.d.r. said i didn’t have enough money in my acct.to settle with that one so i sent them over 3000.00 to take care of it.my chase card accts. seemed like the only ones that would not work with this co. and they made an agreement with me to take payments out of my checking for 5 years with no interest charges till paid in full.i told l.h.d.r. about it and had them remove all chase acct. off the list (over 40,000.00).
i asked l.h.d.r. if that would affect the contract negatively in any way towards me and they just said i would pay the others off faster but did not mention they would still keep the 15% on the 88,000.00.that was a few months ago.so far l.h.d.r. has taken over 10,000.00 out of my acct.to cover their fees and told me it wouldn’t be till august till i started building up credit to pay the cards.most of the collection calls have stopped.
i asked l.h.d.r. about the the 15% fee and told them it should only be a little over 7,000.00 instead of the 15,000.00 because of the over 40,000.00 i removed from their list.they told me that the contract was for 88,000.00 and that is what they were chargeing me for and that i cannot get any credit back because i removed the chase accts. for personal reasons.i told them the only reason i did it because they could not stop chase from collection efforts and it was becomeing overwhelming and they offered to work with me.l.h.d.r. told me they were soory about that,but they are still chargeing me the 15% on the 88,000.00.
they are chargeing me over 7,000.00 more than i should be paying. can they get away with that?
Your unfortunate situation is just another in a long line of examples of why I think it is getting to the point that I should be able to call Legal Helpers an outright scam, which is how it appears to be. I mean, after hearing story after story of clients getting shafted over there, at what point can you just say, it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, sounds like a duck, and poops all over the place, therefore I think it is a duck?
As if their actual program wasn’t bad enough, in my opinion, continuing to charge you for the full 88,000 dollars has gone beyond the pale and should serve as a warning to any consumer that even thinks about doing business with this outfit. What more evidence could one possibly need to show that these guys are not trying to help their clients get out of debt, at least not to the extent that it interferes with their ill gotten gains? They could refund part of that money at any time to reflect the fees based on the actual balance they have in their program, but instead they say, sorry, we don’t care about you or your problems, now keep paying us and by August we might start to do something.
So, now that I have had to deliver the unfortunate news that Legal Helpers has just screwed over another client, the question is, what if anything can you do about it, and what do you do about the other 44,000 in debt. You certainly can’t continue to pay money to a company that is treating you this way in my opinion.
If they don’t care about helping you now, why would that attitude suddenly change after they get all their money? In fact, is their service likely to get better or worse after they have all of their fees? To illustrate how bad Legal Helpers has put you in the hole, I know of some companies that could assist you in settling that 44,000 for probably less money than you still owe to Legal Helpers, even though you have already paid them 10,000 dollars with little to show for it. So I can think of no reason why you should continue to stay with their program and pay them additional money to treat you like this.
Or you can negotiate directly with your creditors and save even more money. Often times, consumers working directly with their creditors, armed with the right information can actually get better deals with their creditors than Legal Helpers will get you. Especially if Legal Helpers spends the first 18 months sitting on your file, collecting as much in fees from you as they can, all the while your accounts get to litigation and start to file lawsuits. Oh wait, that is actually what Legal Helpers seems to be doing.
I can’t tell you specifically what to do until I know more about your situation, but I can tell you if I was in your situation, I would cancel that contract yesterday and demand a refund. Then I would find a more appropriate and reasonably priced solution to resolve the rest of my debt. Once I had a real solution in place, I would give Legal Helpers another chance to refund my money. I would contact the principle attorneys and give them a chance to make things right.
If they wouldn’t refund my money, then I would seriously consider taking them to court. Then I would file a grievance with the bar association in Illinois against the principle attorneys to see what the bar thinks of those actions, and I would also copy the bar grievance to Lisa Madigan, the AG in Illinois where Legal Helpers is based out of. She has a pending lawsuit against them and might be interested in hearing how you are being “helped” out of debt with their service.
Now I am not an attorney, but I know many consumer advocate attorneys monitor this site and perhaps they can provide some valuable feedback for you as well on the steps you can take if Legal Helpers will not return any of your money. You may even find one that would be willing to take the case.
Now, are any of those things going to get your money back? Unfortunately I can’t tell you yes or no. Like many consumers before you that have been chewed up by the Legal Helpers Marketing Machine, you might just be out the $10,000 at this point.
However, if it was me, I would certainly make it a point to share my story all over the internet in as many forums as I could as a way to let other consumers know what I went through in the hopes that sharing your story will help others to avoid having to go through what you are unfortunately having to deal with. I know that won’t bring the 10,000 back, but it would help others in a big way, and at least give meaning and purpose to the money that was lost.
But we will still hold out hope that the principle attorneys for Legal Helpers would see the wisdom in doing right by their clients by taking a look at this situation personally. At this point I am sure they likely have no idea about your file as Legal Helpers clients, according to their contract are not serviced by actual attorneys, but mostly sales people and a servicing company that they contract the work and most of the money to apparently.
Given the current regulatory environment, I would say there is a decent chance that if you take your case to the top, you might see some results. I may be thinking with to much logic here, but if the AG was suing my company and claiming I don’t actually help people get out of debt, the last thing I would want is your story making its way to the AG’s office and handing them the case against me on a silver platter.
Please give the principle attorneys a shot to make this right and let me know what they say. Then we can see what action, if any you should look at taking next.
If you would like to have a private consultation about how best to move forward with this situation and more importantly, your still looming financial issues, please contact me through my website to schedule the consultation. Together we can put some real solutions in place that will deliver the results you are looking for and actually cost much less.
Damon is a talented independent debt coach that provides in-depth assistance and consultations for people struggling with debt. If you want a personal debt coach to help you through a difficult situation or want assistance to find secret discounts offered by debt settlement companies I think Damon Day is an excellent person to contact for advice and assistance. He can be reached directly at DamonDay.com
If you have a debt related question you’d like to ask, just use the online form.