Consumers Charged Illegal Student Loan Relief Fees to Get Some Scratch Back

This month, more than 7,100 people who were charged illegal advance fees by Timemark, Inc. to renegotiate, settle, reduce, or alter the terms of their federal student loans will receive a check in the mail.

Payments will be sent on July 6, 2023, through Epiq Systems. If you do not receive a check and believe you are eligible for funds, you can submit a claim by visiting https://www.CFPB-Timemark.org . If you have questions about receiving a refund, email info@cfpb-timemark.org or call 1 (866) 991-0913.

In July 2020, the CFPB settled with Timemark, Inc. for violating the Telemarketing Sales Rule. From 2016 through October 2019, the company used telemarketing campaigns to convince people with federal student loans to pay up to $699 in fees to file paperwork to reduce or eliminate their monthly payments, through loan consolidation, forgiveness, or income-driven repayment plans. The U.S. Department of Education, however, offers these options to student loan borrowers for free. To market its student-loan debt-relief services, Timemark, Inc. used two websites, timemarksolutions.com and loan-counselors.com, created and posted YouTube videos, and placed Google Ads. Each of these marketing channels provided a phone number for consumers to call to sign up for Timemark Inc.’s services.

Under the Telemarketing Sales Rule, it is illegal to request or receive any fees for debt-relief services sold through telemarketing before the terms of the debt are altered or settled and the consumer has made at least one payment pursuant to the new arrangement. Timemark, Inc. violated the Telemarketing Sales Rule because it requested and received payments from consumers within a few days, or at the latest, within 30 days of their enrollment—before the terms of the debts were altered.

Learn more about the case.


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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.
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