SAN MATEO, Calif., Nov. 9, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — In response to a formal complaint filed against Freedom Debt Relief by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on November 8, the company today issued the following statement to its family of clients, employees, and communities it serves:
Freedom Family –
Yesterday the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a complaint against Freedom Debt Relief (FDR), alleging, among other things, that FDR deceived consumers, first, by not informing them that there are certain “difficult creditors” who will not negotiate and, second, by forcing consumers to negotiate their own settlements with such creditors (so-called “coached settlements”). We firmly believe that the CFPB fundamentally misunderstands how debt settlement works and has acted without proper regard for the consumers it is charged with protecting. We want to set the record straight and share our perspective.
Freedom Debt Relief helps financially challenged consumers achieve financial security by securing for them settlements of their outstanding debts, often at a substantial discount to what they owed. In October 2017, for example, FDR settled $175 million of debts for 43,000 consumers at an average settlement of less than 50 cents on the dollar. That’s over $88 million of savings in the month for American families in financial hardship. To date, we’ve achieved over $7 billion in debt settlements for over 450,000 clients. Throughout our 15-year history, we’ve stayed centered on our clients and worked hard to earn our reputation as a business that serves our customers effectively, efficiently and ethically. It’s no accident that we’ve become the nation’s largest debt settlement provider.
It’s surprising, and very unfortunate, that the CFPB chose to act without taking the time to focus either on the facts or the utility and purpose of “coached settlements,” both of which were thoroughly and completely disclosed to consumers at various points in their debt settlement programs. The overarching assertion that we cannot and do not settle client accounts with key creditors is simply not true. In fact, since 2010, Freedom Debt Relief has settled $1.2 billion in debt (nearly 200,000 accounts) for clients who came to us with accounts from the credit card issuers mentioned in the complaint. Sadly, the CFPB paid no attention to the enormous benefits our clients realized from our active assistance in their settlement process.
Perhaps most important, we are not aware of any complaints to the CFPB from our customers over this (or any other) issue – zero complaints. Freedom Debt Relief’s business practices are legally compliant, highly ethical and serve the needs of our customers, saving them millions of dollars over what they would otherwise be required to pay.
We’d like to share a few facts that the CFPB hasn’t mentioned:
We’re tremendously proud of the work we do and will continue to work every day to deliver on our commitments to our customers. And we will vigorously contest this complaint.
Thank you for your continued belief in our mission!
Andrew Housser and Brad Stroh
Co-Founders and Co-CEOs, Freedom Debt Relief – Source