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Author Archives: 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.

Advanced Fee Credit Repair Still Bullshit

Crime Or Corruption Cartoon Illustration

Yesterday the Federal Trade Commission announced a very successful action against RMCN Credit Services for charging consumers for credit repair services. Over the years some readers have insisted in arguing with me that charging advance fees for removing negative but accurate information from a credit report is perfectly legit. Well that approach is bullshit, was bullshit and will continue to ... Read More »

Why is the Department of Education Being so Opaque on Student Loans?

puzzled looking little boy looking to the left

Over the past few months I’ve attempted to gets statistics, facts, and figures from the Department of Education to better understand the performance of their income based repayment programs and get better clarity on their collection process for delinquent student loans. After multiple Freedom of Information Act requests the results are less than optimal. To my request for payment performance ... Read More »

New Obama Student Loan Proposal – Swing and a Miss

begging

Yesterday President Obama made an announcement that a good federal student loan repayment program would be expanded to allow up to five million more people to take advantage of Pay As You Earn (PAYE). Certainly on face value it seems like a grand advancement and it is a small step in the right direction but in reality it’s more like ... Read More »

FTC Goes After DebtPro123 for General Debt Relief Bullshit

ftc

Over the years DebtPro123 has come up from time-to-time, but not like this. Yesterday the Federal Trade Commission made a bold move in the debt relief space. It surprised me because I thought they’d moved on to other things. Just feels like since the TSR the debt space has been cooling off. But it probably doesn’t feel like that over ... Read More »

Perplexing Suit Filed Against Consumer Protection Counsel and Others

questions

A reader brought a recent lawsuit filed by Betty Bennett against Otto Berges, Berges Law Group, Consumer Protection Counsel, Debt Be Gone, Paralegal Staff Support, and United Legal Group. What had me scratching my head was the complaint says, “In or around September 2013, a person alleging to work for Defendant Consumer Protection Counsel contacted Ms. Bennett, offering to help ... Read More »

How to Get a Co-Signer Off a Private Student Loan

hiding-1

Private student loans are bad news all by themselves but when you add in a co-signer, things can get very financially messy. Co-signers think they are doing a nice thing for their relative or child when they co-sign. They think they are helping to further the persons education and give them a hand-up in life. But often what they are ... Read More »

Letters to Release Co-Signer From Private Student Loan

break free from prison pressure or quit job running away towards

Sample Letter on How a Borrower Can Release a Co-Signer You may use the sample letter on the next page to ask your loan servicing company for more information about how to release a co-signer. How to use this sample letter: Read the background below. Fill in your information on the sample letter and edit it as needed to fit ... Read More »

Who Is Consumer Relief Attorneys a Reader Asks

abandoned

I received an email from a reader asking me who Consumer Relief Attorneys was. The reader had attached a link to this file and made a statement an Alabama attorney by the name of James Oster was somehow related to Consumer Relief Attorneys. I don’t know if that is true. It is tough to tell from public records since there ... Read More »

Sovereign Associates and Sovereign Funding Sent Me This Offer. What Do You Think?

Sovereign Associates

A very nice reader sent in the following offer they received and said, “I will just be grateful if this is not legitimate and it helps me and/or others that are in a financial hardship and get something that seems to answer their prayers and may fall subject to an even worse situation. That in itself is awful! Thank you ... Read More »

Marc Hoffman of Hoffman Law Group to Face Bar Issues

punched-in-face

The Hoffman Law Group is/was a Florida based company that is said to have provided foreclosure rescue services and solicited consumers for mass joinder suits against lenders. This approach has been problematic and a number of authorities have warned consumers about this type of activity. The Palm Beach Post is reporting: “A North Palm Beach lawyer who advertises foreclosure-rescue services ... Read More »

FTC Bans MLM Executives and Says Claims Were Bogus

broken piggybank with dollar notes

The operators of a Kentucky-based pyramid scheme, which enrolled more than 350,000 consumers throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada in the last four years, have been banned from multi-level marketing under a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission and the states of Illinois, Kentucky and North Carolina. The settlement also requires the operators to surrender assets totaling at ... Read More »

Who is Consumer Legal Resources of Florida?

Adult Ed - Questions

A reader asked me today about a company out of Florida called Consumer Legal Resources of Florida that the State of Florida says Joseph Hilton is the president of. The company was registered in Florida on April 25, 2014. Does anybody know what this new company is going to be doing for consumers or selling? Get Out of Debt Guy ... Read More »

Kick in the Nuts for Attorney Model Debt Settlement?

kicked_in_the_nuts

I was remiss in not covering this sooner but at the end of March there was what appears to be an important decision regarding attorney model debt settlement services where attorneys claim they are not regulated by the state and can charge advance fees. In a decision that the Maryland based debt settlement group, Persels and Associates, says they will ... Read More »

Consumer Assistance Project, Back Office Law Project, and Law Office of Timothy McCabe Hit CT

bitch slap copy

For years now I’ve talked about how tough the state of Connecticut is with debt relief companies. Well today marks another page turn in that story. The State attempted to contact Consumer Assistance Project, Back Office Law Project, and the Law Office of Timothy McCabe, numerous times, over concerns of unlicensed debt adjusting or debt negotiation. And apparently the Consumer ... Read More »

Education Loan Network Mailer Raises Concerns for Reader

ELN Inside

An amazing reader adalton sent in a new debt relief mailer through my I Buy Junk Mail program. The mailer if for an entity identified as Education Loan Network and mailed from postal permit 1297 in Sacramento, CA. The reader who submitted this mailer for review, said: “I noticed a couple red flags on this one: 1. This generically named ... Read More »

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