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Debt Relief Industry

United Financial Systems and Christopher Boulahanis Reach Settlement With Florida AG

This is actually a picture of the UFS building that a reader sent in previously. The Florida Attorney General just made a big announcement concerning the non-profit credit counseling group United Financial Systems. This is a company that we first announced was likely to implode back in August of 2010. Unfortunately the economic impact caused by United Financial Systems will ... Read More »

Bankruptcy Filing Rates Continue to Drop

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Credit Slips is reporting that U.S. bankruptcy filings have now dropped for the 13th consecutive month in November. The daily filing rate is down 12.5% from last November. Although the past seven months have seen double-digit year-over-year drops, these drops have consistently stayed between 10-17%. In other words, there is no increase in the rate of decrease. Extrapolating from this ... Read More »

Robert Manning and Responsible Debt Relief Institute Named in Software Suit

A tipster (send in your tips here) sent in a recent suit by the Cole Group, Inc and Robert Manning, Newtonian Finances, Debtorwise Foundation, and Responsible Debt Relief Institute. Frankly, the suit is a bit of a shocker. The Manning approach to helping credit counseling groups work out a satisfactory way to determine the most effective way to resolve debt ... Read More »

California Lawyer Disbarred Over Loan Modification Business

Another sad story of advanced fee loan modifications tearing down yet another group of people. From the California Bar Journal. Get Out of Debt Guy – Twitter, G+, Facebook PAUL JEFFREY LUCAS [#163076], 50, of Aliso Viejo was disbarred July 22, 2011, and he was ordered to make restitution and comply with rule 9.20 of the California Rules of Court. ... Read More »

Is Clearpoint Credit Counseling Solutions Doing Debt Settlement?

A reader wanted me to watch a past video, that I’ve embedded below. The reader wanted to know if Clearpoint Credit Counseling Solutions was involved in debt settlement. Clearpoint is an NFCC and AICCCA member agency (source) so the claim they had been involved in debt settlement sounded surprising to me. Typically non-profit credit counseling agencies are scared to touch ... Read More »

Less Than Full Balance Plans and the Problems They Create for Credit Counselors

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For many years debt relief plan providers, such as nonprofit credit counselors, and debt settlement service providers, have been seen as two separate and distinct structures in the debt relief services industry. These two sides of the industry have often been at odds with one another. While debt settlement providers have never come together as a unified voice to slam ... Read More »

Give Your Company a Great Gift This Holiday Season: Review Your Contract

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Readers may forget that not only do I write about the debt relief industry, but I used to run a debt relief group at one time. I familiar with the tremendous issues that come with helping people deal with debt. Just yesterday I published this article and it was a great example of an issue that many debt relief companies ... Read More »

Global Client Solutions Moves Unusual Nelson Gamble & Associates FL Case to Federal Court

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On December 11, 2011, Global Client Solutions moved a case against them to Federal Court. The case is Ronda Andrews v. Nelson Gamble & Associates and Global Client Solutions. The case alleges that in August or September, Nelson Gamble and Associates contacted Andrews and offered their services in the form of a consumer debt consolidation program. Andrews reviewed the program ... Read More »

CFPB Appears to Embrace Debt Workout Arrangements

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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has recently released a copy of their new simpler proposed credit card agreements. One point that caught my eye was the use of the term “Workout Arrangement” in conjunction with defaulted debt. The use of this term, rather than specifying credit counseling or some other debt relief channel is very interesting. It mirrors the language ... Read More »

Consumer Debt Up in October But More Behind the Numbers

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The November Federal Reserve G19 report is out with the latest reported G19 figures. The report indicates a 0.6 percent increase in revolving consumer debt and a 5.3 percent increase in non-revolving consumer debt in October. If we look at the revolving consumer debt numbers, the increase was dues to increases in finance companies, and pools of securitized assets. Non-revolving ... Read More »

Meracord to be New Name for NoteWorld

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For some reason, it appears NoteWorld is changing their name to Meracord on January 9, 2012. You may wonder, what does Meracord mean? According to the document a tipster (send in your tips here) sent me, “It is associated with the words “merit” and “accord” and represents NoteWorld’s passion for integrity and honor. It embodies NoteWorld’s philosophy of providing services ... Read More »

According to the IRS it Appears Credit Counseling Should be Talking About Debt Settlement

A friend forwarded me a copy of the Core Analysis Tool (CAT) the IRS auditors use to review IRS 501(c)(3) non-profit credit counseling organizations. As part of that document the IRS states what to look for when evaluating credit counseling sessions. They say: “Information about what counselors do in sessions with clients can generally be found from a number of ... Read More »

Inside IRS Denial of Credit Counseling Application – Letter 4038

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Today I’m taking another look at IRS documentation involving non-profit 501(c)(3) actions. It’s important to take a look at these documents to understand what the IRS feels is appropriate activity or behavior of credit counseling groups. This letter was issued to a new group that wanted to be approved as a non-profit credit counseling group and was denied. The IRS ... Read More »

Take Charge America Files Petition in United States Tax Court

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A tipster (send in your tips here) let me know that the IRS non-profit 501(c)(3) credit counseling group Take Charge America has filed a petition with the United States Tax Court. – Source Take Charge America filed it’s petition on November 28, 2011 and is represented by Venable. We will have to wait and see additional information as it becomes ... Read More »

Beware of U.S. Federal Stimulus Package Mailer Promising Debt Help

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A reader sent in a mailer they recently received. I can’t believe these mailers are still being sent out. The mailer says, “You are hereby notified that benefits set aside, through the 2010 U.S. Federal Stimulus Package, in the name of [x] are set to expire as of 1/4/2012 at 12 Midnight E.S.T. If said benefits have not been redeemed, ... Read More »

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