Debt Settlement

I’m So Afraid of Actify Solutions and if They Will Retaliate Against Me

Written by Steve Rhode

Question:

Dear Steve,

Two yrs. ago, I received a mortgage refinance solicitation, got approved but turned down the offer due to the high-interest rate.

At that time, my credit score was 788. The Broker then referred me National Accounts who can settle w/ my creditors to lower my monthly payments.

I never missed any of my CC payments; paid them on time. But then, I was overwhelmed w/ debts so I needed credit card intervention; so I thought will solve my problems.

The National Account rep. is a friend of the Mortgage Broker. She said she represents Actify Solutions and will be able to help me, free of debts in 24 months.

What kind of help is available to me? For 2 yrs. I paid Actiify Solutions in excess of $14K; got sued twice by the creditors.

All these payments were not paid to the creditors, they kept my payments, then sent letters to the 3 credit bureaus to invalidate and dispute my debts.

Actify Solutions messed-up my credit ratings; from the almost perfect score – brackets of green colors and now all in black brackets.

I’m too scared to even file a report to the BBB. Actify Solutions knew my SSN, address etc. Fearing they will retaliate and caused me more unimaginable nightmares. Please help me. Thank you.

Grace

Answer:

Dear Grace,

Actify Solutions website advertises themselves as a document preparation company that will “help you make good decisions” and not a debt relief company. That’s very interesting.

I think what we have here is a combination of situations:

Was Debt Settlement the Right Program to Begin With?

Defaulting on your debts to settle is instantly going to lead to a negative impact on your credit report. Those that default have a much higher chance of being sued.

I typically see consumers who are surprised this happens because the friendly commissioned sales representatives rarely explain it clearly. However, most multi-page client agreements people sign do contain this information in the fine print. Companies then say the consumer agreed to it and understood the risks.

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To avoid lawsuits and get complete legal protection the only solution is a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It is the fastest and least expensive way out of debt. However, most debt relief companies will tell you to avoid bankruptcy so you buy their product.

While I was writing this I spoke to an old friend, debt coach Michael Bovee, who also observes that most people (70%+) of consumers he speaks with are better suited for bankruptcy over debt settlement. Yet it is no surprise that debt settlement salespeople often push settlement because that’s how they make money.

Debt relief salespeople are not independent financial consultants providing non-biased advice.

Debt Disputes

Letters to credit bureaus to dispute debts are problematic. Your credit report should contain accurate information, even if it is truthfully reflecting negative accounts.

Having a debt removed from a credit report does not mean the debt is not collectible but it also does not prevent it from being reported again.

Debt Invalidation

To invalidate a debt you would need to interact directly with the creditor who owns the debt. All major creditors have the necessary documentation, mostly, to validate the debt. You have a better chance of having a creditor stop collections on a debt that has been sold on to a debt buyer and they do not have the required documentation from the original creditor to prove you owe the debt.

Why Not?

You say you paid Actify Solutions a lot of money for debt settlement help. Yet their website does not mention they perform debt settlement. Don’t you find that odd? I do. And in that odd column, I think it is strange they direct people from their home page to their BBB page that has such horrible complaints.

This complaint from a Carolyn M sounds like the experience you describe above.

A Little Extra Research

Actify Solutions says they are located at 7855 Fay Ave #340, La Jolla CA 92037. The State of California has no company registered to do business under the name Actify Solutions.

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The BBB states:

Business Management

Mr. Andrew Smith, Partner
Mr. Michael C Leonard, President

You can do your own research on the company using one of my guides below:

  1. The Ultimate Consumer Guide to Checking Out a Debt Relief Company Before You Sign On the Line
  2. 10 Must Do Steps to Find the Best Credit Counseling or Debt Settlement Company for You
  3. How to Check Out a Business or Company to Avoid Getting Scammed or Ripped Off

Fear of Retailiation

I don’t think you should be “afraid” of Actify Solutions. You certainly have the right to ask questions and get answers regarding your account and the service you’ve received. There is nothing wrong in politely asking questions to get data to better understand the situation.

If you don’t have your client agreement handy, maybe they can give you a copy so you can read what it is that you exactly agreed to when you became a client with them.

You can always follow the steps I outline in this article to attempt to reach a solution where both you and Actify can agree on what to do now.

Actify Solutions is not going to punish you for speaking up reasonably about wanting answers and good customer service.

Please let me know what happens by updating me in the comments below.

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About the author

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.

6 Comments

  • Hello Steve – this is my feedback in re to Actify Solutions. Actify didn’t reneged with their promise, my refund was wired to my bank account yesterday. They even gave me the assurance, to pro actively follow through & handle my case, monitor my credit reports and even pay for the lawyers’ retainers fees. This is indeed a peaceful outcome, and with this, a BIG THANK YOU TO DANA of Actify Solutions for making it happen.

    • It is so nice to hear good news stories and professional outcomes. Indeed, a big thank you to Dana who helped you through this issue. Good customer service is priceless.

      • Hello Steve:
        This is my follow-up in re to Actify Solutions.
        Last Thursday, July 11th, a rep. from Actify called me. The day before, I was admitted in the hospital for elevated BP and almost had a stroke/brain aneurysm. Surprised with her phone demeanor, she was so nice & concerned about my health problems. I was hooked-up to an ivy and other gadgets to monitor my BP.

        Lo and behold, before she ended the phone call she promised to help and issue me a refund. This was such a miracle Steve, you are amazing. A thank you is not enough for your advice and helping others w/the same financial predicament. I will send you a follow-up email when that refund is credited to my bank account?

        GOD BLESS YOU.

        • I wish more companies would realize that taking care of their customers earns them more public credit than being nasty. So glad this worked out and hopefully you are on the mend now.

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