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Debt Relief Industry

Serial Debt Relief Scammer Busted Once Again by FTC

ftc

Under settlements with the Federal Trade Commission, the defendants in two Tampa, Florida-area operations that allegedly bilked consumers of millions of dollars are banned from providing various types of financial services used in their schemes. In the spring of 2012, at the request of the FTC, a court shut down the two operations. According to the FTC, the defendants used ... Read More »

Direct Student Aid Commercial Catches My Attention

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A recent commercial for Direct Student Aid caught my attention. It seems the company is advertising it can offer some sort of special help for people who are having student loan problems. A secret shopper call, which you can hear below, found out the company charges between $799 to $999 for a service consumers can get for free from their ... Read More »

Well Done Debt Settlement Solutions

connecticut

Debt Settlement Solutions, a Florida company, had been previously contacted by the State of Connecticut about operating without a license. Usually these things end badly but in a rare occurrence it looks like one company, Debt Settlement Solutions, This situation shows how flexible state regulators can be when debt relief companies participate in the process. According to the State, “By ... Read More »

Independence Law Group Slapped by Connecticut

connecticut

The Connecticut Department of Banking has announced Independence Law Group has engaged in acts or conduct, violating the laws of the state regarding debt adjusters and debt negotiation. The company was ordered to cease and desist and was imposed a civil penalty of $100,000. According to the State, “On July 11, 2013, the Order and Notice sent to Respondent’s agent ... Read More »

Massachusetts One Step Closer to Regulating Debt Settlement

law books

Collections & Credit Risk is reporting the State of Massachusetts is a step closer to regulate for-profit debt settlement companies operating in the state. Debt settlement companies would have to disclose their fees and create a budget analysis before enrolling consumers. “The longer Massachusetts waits, choosing not to oversee this industry, the more consumers will be taken advantage of by ... Read More »

Details on CFPB Lawsuit Against Morgan Drexen

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Yesterday I mentioned the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed suit against Morgan Drexen. As I mentioned, I said I would take more time today and wander through the complaint filed and share more about the allegations. If there was no doubt in the mind of any debt relief industry executive if the CFPB was set to regulate the industry, the ... Read More »

Morgan Drexen Sued by CFPB. Take That!

cfpb

Recently the debt settlement company Morgan Drexen sued the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, CFPB, hoping they would be declared unconstitutional and disbanded. For more, see this and this. Today the CFPB turned around and unloaded their long-term investigation into Morgan Drexen and filed suit against them. I’ll review the entire lawsuit tomorrow but for now, here is what the CFPB ... Read More »

Consumer Advocacy Assistance Mortgage Modification Mailer – Watch Out

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A group, Consumer Advocacy Assistance, who reports to being located in Laguna Hills, California sent a mortgage modification mailer to a consumer in New Jersey. The mailer appears to be an official mailer from the Loss Mitigation Administrative Office. Frankly it looks like the standard B.S. mortgage modification mailer many have received. An amazing reader Hanna sent in a new ... Read More »

Disappointing Debt Relief Mailer Leads to Debt Defense Services

debt_settlement_scam_envelope

A new debt relief mailer, which you will see below, poses as an official document but in fact leads to a potential sale for Debt Defense Services according to the tipster (send in your tips here). What do you think, is the mailer deceptive or perfectly fine from your point of view? Add your comment below. An amazing reader CLK ... Read More »

FTC Gets Ass Kicked on Appeal and Wins at Same Time

mistakes

Back in 2012 the FTC lost a case it had brought against Corey Butcher, Brent Butcher, and Financial Freedom of America, Financial Freedom Processing. The case was one where the FTC said the performance statements made by the debt settlement companies were not accurate and could mislead consumers. In what seemed like a ruling from an alternate universe, the judge ... Read More »

July 2013 Senior Loan Officer Survey Shows Flat Line for Debt Relief

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As an indication of future demand for debt relief services, a good place to look for clues is the Federal Reserve report on senior loan officer plans. The July 2013 survey is just out but paints a continued flat line picture offer increasing unsecured consumer loans. “Responses from domestic banks indicated that they were somewhat more willing to make consumer ... Read More »

California Mortgage Modification Scammers Get Jail Time

mans hands behind bars in jail or prison

The Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) today announced that on July 29, four California men were sentenced for defrauding hundreds of victims in a real estate scam that included fraudulently collecting upfront fees for loan modification services and sending fake letters with mortgage servicer logos offering home loan modification assistance. Victim losses ... Read More »

Does Moran Drexen’s Preferred Creditor Program Create a Problem for Consumers?

old man headache

Last week new information in the lawsuit between Morgan Drexen and the CFPB brought to light a commission compensated department called the Preferred Creditor Program. You can read that article, here. At least one commenter mentioned Morgan Drexen is not the only company to have such a program. If not, then an industry wide problem may exist here. One commenter ... Read More »

Debt Settlement Providers Pocketed Money, Got Prison

mans hands behind bars in jail or prison

Houstonian Nathaniel Chilo, aka Nathaniel O’Neil, 23, now convicted in two separate debt relief scams, has been sentenced to prison again, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Chilo entered a plea of guilty to wire fraud in relation to this case Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012. Today, U.S. District Judge Lee H. Rosenthal, who accepted the guilty plea, handed Chilo ... Read More »

Morgan Drexen and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act

Mature woman confused

I didn’t have a chance to write about this Morgan Drexen case the other day but I did discover it when I was writing this story. At first I thought it wasn’t even worth covering but the more I thought about it the more it seemed like a different type of suit against a debt relief company than we’ve seen ... Read More »

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