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Regulation / Legislation

Debt Relief Legislation in the Works

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The National Policy Group has just sent out a list of the most recent legislative action covering debt relief. Members of the debt relief industry may want to pay attention to the following proposed legislation: Indiana HB 1410 Indiana HB 1483 Indiana HB 1528 Kentucky HB 133 Mississippi HB 425 & SB 2251 Mississippi HB 824 & SB 2382 Nebraska ... Read More »

Former IRS Agent Tells Tax Debt Relief Services May be Dangerous to Consumers

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photo © 2007 paul stumpr | more info (via: Wylio)Jim Buttonow, a CPA and former IRS Agent has released information about why the very premise of selling tax relief services for an advance fee is something consumers should be protected from. Below you will find submitted comments to the Federal Trade Commission regarding the selling of tax relief services. Get ... Read More »

NYC Still Pushing for Debt Settlement Consumer Protection Act

On November 18, 2010 a meeting was held with the New York City Council and testimony was presented. As part of that testimony it was reveled that the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs is still pushing for the Debt Settlement Consumer Protection Act. We are also pushing for strong federal legislation, the Debt Settlement Consumer Protection Act of ... Read More »

Non-Profit Credit Counselors Watched by New York for Bogus Activities

In a story that would have been just about a presentation to the New York City Council about debt settlement activities comes a glance into the activities of some debt settlement companies to attempt to loophole out of FTC new rules to regulate debt relief activities. The documents from the meeting say: Karen S is a 55 year old home ... Read More »

Credit Counseling Agencies Challenge FTC to Take Agressive Action Against Debt Settlement Companies for Violating Telemarketing Sales Rules

The following letter was sent to the Federal Trade Commission: Get Out of Debt Guy – Twitter, G+, Facebook Need More Help? December 13, 2010 Federal Trade Commission Office of the Secretary Room H-135 (Annex T) 600 Pennsylvania Ave, NW Washington, DC 20580 Re: Debt Settlement Company Evasion of Amendments to TSR Dear Commissioners, We are writing to speak out ... Read More »

Maryland Tries for a Fourth Time to Pass Debt Settlement Regulation

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Maryland legislators for the fourth year in a row will consider regulating debt settlements, and new recommendations in a report out this month may be the charm. In Maryland, legislators have tried three times to regulate the industry. Sen. Thomas “Mac” Middleton, chairman of the Finance Committee, says his committee requested a study before the next session begins in January. ... Read More »

Face to Face Meeting Companies May Just Be Partners in Debt Settlement Deception

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A debt settlement company has forwarded me the following email pitch they received from a face-to-face meeting company. These companies are acting as agents of debt settlement companies in order “to satisfy the FTC’s face to face TSR exemption,” so some debt settlement companies can continue to collect large up-front fees from consumers. The Email Pitch Thank you for taking ... Read More »

Recommendations Released Today for Debt Settlement in Maryland

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The Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition today released its recommendations for better regulation of the debt settlement industry. The recommendations are in conjunction with those from the Maryland Office of the Attorney General and the Maryland Office of the Commissioner of Financial Regulation, which MCRC feels do not go far enough. (Read report/recommendations here, including the story of a Marylander who ... Read More »

Perfect Net Branch Claims TSR Exemption But I Don’t Get It?

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A fantastic tipster (send in your tips here) sent in the following email being sent out by Perfect Net Branch. The Future Of Debt Settlement is Here! Debt Settlement Programs: 1. ATTORNEY program: – Client receives a FACE TO FACE presentation (exempt from the TSR rules). Thousands of attorneys throughout 48 states and growing with a Dedicated Appointment Setting Department ... Read More »

My Highlighted Copy of the FTC Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rules

Recently the FTC passed new rules to protect consumers from deceptive mortgage relief providers who claim that for compensation they can help save a home from foreclosure or modify a mortgage. Below you will find a link to the final rule issued by the FTC with my highlights of what I felt was most important in the rule. FEDERAL TRADE ... Read More »

Attorney Model Debt Settlement Companies, Affiliates, and Marketers are Not Going to Like What’s Coming From the FTC

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This past weekend I held a meeting titled the “Rally in Raleigh” where a number of debt relief companies, and some guest regulators got together to talk openly and honestly about the current state of the debt relief industry. We wound up focusing more on debt settlement since it is a subset of the debt relief industry that is going ... Read More »

Secret Shopper Debt Settlement Call. How Do You Think They Did?

Yesterday I made my first secret shopper call after the FTC TSR went fully into force. My vote of the call yesterday was a FAIL. You can read my comments on that call here. So today I decided to call the exact same company back and confirm what the sales representative had told me yesterday. That didn’t happen. Today I ... Read More »

FTC Provides Video on Debt Relief Services and Telemarketing Sales Rule

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Here is a nice video from our friend Allison Brown at the FTC about the new telemarketing sales rule and some last minute clarifications for consumers. Get Out of Debt Guy – Twitter, G+, Facebook Need More Help? Transcript Allison Brown: Hi I’m Allison Brown, an attorney with the Federal Trade Commission, the nation’s consumer protection agency. If you’re in ... Read More »

Debt Relief Alert: Deadline for Implementing New Model Privacy Form Fast Approaching

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Starting on January 1, 2011, “financial institutions” subject to the federal Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (the “GLB Act”) will have to use new model privacy forms if they want to take advantage of a “safe harbor” for compliance with requirements for providing initial and annual privacy notices to customers. The model privacy forms will replace the sample clauses associated with an existing ... Read More »

FTC Releases New Guide: Debt Relief Services & the Telemarketing Sales Rule: What People Are Asking

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I just got word from the FTC they released a new guide to help people understand the new telemarketing sales rule for debt relief products. You’ll find the guide below. You’ll also find that it helps to clarify the rule and slams the door closed on some of the ways people were trying to evade the law with loopholes. Get ... Read More »

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