A tipster (send in your tips here) forwarded me the marketing agreement of a debt relief company that its affiliates must sign.
It is a big document and I’m working my way through it but I did want to point out what the agreement says the marketer cannot say. What do you think, will a marketer steer clear of these items?
So what will a compliant sales pitch consist of,a wink and a nod?
Marketer on behalf of itself and any of its employees, agents, subcontractors, Affiliates and affiliated parties fully understands and agrees it:
- may not make any guarantees to any consumer;
- cannot tell or imply to a consumer that the consumer will not get sued or forced into arbitration;
- cannot tell or imply any consumer that all creditors/collectors will agree to negotiate all debt obligations enrolled in a Debt Relief Services program and must notify the consumer that some creditors/collectors may be unwilling to negotiate on specific debts;
- cannot tell or imply to any consumer that credit will improve and in fact credit may worsen possibly even resulting in freezing, lowering or closing lines of credits or credit card accounts not enrolled;
- cannot represent or imply that a lawyer or Service Provider will provide legal services of any kind other than what is specified in the Enrolment Package that includes a contract that has to be reviewed and executed by the consumer;
- cannot tell or imply to consumers creditor/collector calls will cease or be reduced in frequency or severity;
- cannot tell consumers they should stop making payments to creditors/collectors;
- must fully describe how the program described in the Enrollment Package operates;
- must fully describe the risks and costs associated with the program described in the Enrollment Package;
- must advise the consumer of the alternatives to the program described in the Enrollment Package including advantages and disadvantages of each alternative;
- cannot make statements about what course of action a consumer should choose when a legal option is available, even if asked for an opinion;
- must clearly state that Marketer, its Affiliates and all employees, subcontractors, and agents are not attorneys, and neither Marketer representative or Marketer is providing legal
- must refuse to answer questions about Bankruptcy and refer them to consult a Bankruptcy lawyer;
- must avoid creating the impression in the consumer’s mind that an attorney-client relationship exists between Marketer representative and the consumer;
- cannot secretly record phone calls;
- cannot state or imply that anyone assumes or pays consumer debts or loans money;
- cannot tell or imply to consumers that anyone will send a cease and desist letter to any creditor/collector and if asked to should state that a consumer should not advise any creditor/collector they are in a program or represented by a lawyer;
- cannot imply or otherwise suggest any time table under which any creditor/collector will be notified by telephone, facsimile, letter or e-mail and if asked must indicate depending upon a variety of factors it could take a long time before specific creditors/collectors would be contacted for the first time;
- cannot represent or imply that the program described in the Enrollment Package has been approved or endorsed by any local, state or federal governmental agency or official;
- must fully advise consumers of the cost of participation;
- cannot use any statistics or testimonials in any advertising or consultations (including website content) with consumers;
- cannot state that any consumer is pre-approved for anything;
- must instruct the consumer that they need to maintain a written log of all creditor/collector calls and
- must fully describe the refund policy and the termination process as well as the amount and timing of any refund.
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