Debt Relief Master Class – “How to Survive, Thrive & Arrive in the New Debt Relief World”

Following up on the enormous success of the Rally in Raleigh I held for members of the debt relief industry, this time I’m rolling out an even more extensive class for debt relief companies to help them find a way forward in a compliant way with help and advice from inside the industry and from regulators.

Phil Lehman, Esq. from the NC Attorney General Office, one of the instructors, is looking forward to meeting and talking with legitimate debt relief companies since there is skepticism in the AG community that many exist. Phil plays an important role in the AG community on these issues. This is your chance to come and introduce yourself to Mr. Lehman.

There is NO CHARGE to attend this class. Attendees are asked to instead make a donation and proceeds will go to the Raleigh Food Bank. Instructors are donating their time in an effort to help all.

Michael Kerr is going to be teaching a class on the UDMSA, one week after the Uniform Law Commission meets. Attendees will get the freshest information on the new UDMSA regulations.

This class will focus on compliance and moving forward in an uncertain debt relief landscape. It is for all niche providers and should be another tremendous event to bring people together.

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You can read the feedback from the previous attendees here.

Debt Relief Master Class – “How to Survive, Thrive & Arrive in the New Debt Relief World”

When: July 16-17, 2011. (Optional free third day for those that want to hang around for private consultations.)

Where: Enjoyable Raleigh, NC


  • Debt settlement company CEOs (Michael Bovee – Consumer Recovery Network & Scott Johnson – USDR)
  • FTC Attorney – Evan Zullow
  • NC State Attorney General Regulators
  • Debt Relief Company Industry Attorney – Michael Thurman from Loeb & Loeb
  • Debt Relief Company Litigator – Michael Dye
  • Debt Relief Policy Advocate – Center for Responsible Lending
  • Howard Dvorkin – Consolidated Credit Counseling
  • Steve Rhode – Hey, it’s my site, of course I’ll be there.
  • Michael Kerr, Legislative Director, Uniform Law Commission

Who Should Attend

Any person directly involved in any manner of debt relief services such as debt settlement services, debt management plan providers, debt buyers, attorneys in general practice, bankruptcy attorneys, consumer attorneys and others who have an interest in how to launch and run a successful and compliant debt relief organization.

In an effort to work closely with regulators, non-profit policy groups, and creditors, attendance for members of those groups and legal aid attorneys will be free.

Why Attend

The comprehensive and intensive weekend workshop is designed to give individuals in and considering entering the debt relief field a thorough understanding of the underlying issues that any debt relief provider must face in order to stay out of trouble, provide the most suitable service possible, and have successful clients.

This master class is designed to help all in the debt relief world to be able to expand their services quickly and in compliance.

Topics will be covered in depth with open attendee participation for each session. There will be an optional 3rd day with a couple of additional hours dedicated to sitting down to answer specific questions to help you return home ready start implementing what you learned.

The debt relief industry is undergoing significant change. Debt settlement providers are looking to offer credit counseling and credit counseling groups are adding debt settlement services. Groups are looking for new opportunities and wandering into unfamiliar territory. We will talk about good ways to explore these new territories.

Topics to be Covered

  • You will learn why your strongest client market is right around you and why focusing on your local market is the new black.
  • Suitability tests to help guide consumers to the debt relief solution that is best for them with a clear focus on the individual’s financial abilities and their individual goals.
  • How to qualify the right customers that focus on quicker program completion and optimal savings. This will give you the best of both worlds; faster income and happy clients.
  • How to market successfully while using more narrow enrollment standards to avoid regulator issues.
  • Setting the correct expectations with the consumer so they become your biggest fans.
  • How to embrace openness and transparency in your efforts to maximize returns. Why sharing your client contracts and performance numbers is the smart thing to do for you and your bottom line.
  • You’ll learn how to use unique technology to limit overhead costs and increase profitability.
  • You will get the information necessary to prepare your consumers for the 3 stages of collection.
  • We’ll touch on client and file work flow from the first day of plan implementation to completion so you can focus on delivering the best debt relief service possible for the least amount of cost and the highest efficiency.
  • There will be a frank discussion of trust accounts, escrow accounts and/or help consumers create self-saver accounts and the benefits and draw backs of both.
  • You will get a chance to meet some industry regulators and talk with the face-to-face about pitfalls and problems that get their attention.
  • We’ll chat about how to implement client strategy sessions and prioritizing accounts for best results once client enrolled.
  • You’ll learn why you need to not be afraid to adjust consumer plans on the fly using creative methods and adjustments to plan implementation.
  • We’ll fill you in on the latest creditor trends, both pre and post charge off.
  • You’ll learn the tricks to use with the post charge off collection pipeline and the strategies to use with assignees.
  • We’ll steer you away from the trouble with power of attorney use and other forms of authorization and the timing of their use. But you’ll learn when to best utilize the power of attorney.
  • You’ll learn why you rarely need to tell the consumer to send a cease communication letter and why that’s not in the best interest of the consumer.
  • We’ll cover how to work with creditors and more importantly the tools and strategies used to work with creditors when they won’t work with you – This is the secret sauce!
  • You’ll learn how you can use DIY debt settlement education so both you and your customers can win.
  • Information on debt validation will be shared to help you better understand if an old debt is collectable at all.
  • We will be flooding you with detailed information on compliance with state and federal laws and how to set up your business in full observance of both.
  • You’ll walk away with knowledge on how to best identify those states you should work in and why.
  • We’ll give you a state matrix that guides you through the myriad of state regulations.
  • By the end of the two day event we’ll also discuss business planning for regulatory change, ISO certification, and more.
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The following people have stated they are attending the class as student or instructors.

  1. Michael Kerr, Legislative Director, Uniform Law Commission
  2. Scott Johnson – USDR
  3. Michael Bovee – Consumer Recovery Network
  4. Evan Zullow – FTC (Skype)
  5. Michael Thurman – Loeb & Loeb
  6. Michael Dye, Esq
  7. Caryn Becker – Center for Responsible Lending
  8. Andrew Housser – Freedom Debt Relief
  9. Alex Viecco – New Era Debt Solutions
  10. Dan Smith – New Era Debt Solutions
  11. Mike Croxson – Care One
  12. Howard Dvorkin – Consolidated Credit Counseling
  13. Diane Chen – CESI Debt Solutions
  14. Steve Rhode – GetOutOfDebt.org
  15. Sean Ryan – Veritas Assurance Group (Legal Plan)
  16. Phil Lehman, Esq., NC Attorney General Office
  17. Michael Lupolover, Esq. – Consumer Law Attorney/Debt Settlement Company Owner
  18. Greg Fitzgerald, Esq. – Debt Settlement Attorney
  19. Damon Day – Debt Coach
  20. Neil Ellington – CESI Debt Solutions
  21. Michelle Rash – RLF Communications
  22. Monty Hagler – RLF Communications
  23. Chris Stone – The Stone Agency
  24. Jenny Martin – The Stone Agency
  25. Sierra Izzard – Pacific Debt
  26. Michele Staley – Resurgent (Debt Buyer)
  27. JR Duck – Resurgent (Debt Buyer)
  28. Class Full Once We Reach This Point.

Anticipated First Day Agenda

Friday, 15 July 2011
Executive Officer Roundtable – casual optional dinner at local restaurant 6-9 pm
Guest Speaker – University Business Management Professor

Day 1 – Saturday, 16 July 2011

9:00 – 9:30 Welcome & Introductions – Steve Rhode

9: 30 – 10:15 UDMSA 2011 – Michael Kerr, Legislative Director, Uniform Law Commission

  • History
  • Debt Adjusters
  • Credit Counseling
  • DMP
  • Debt Settlement
  • Life Span of the ACT
    • Attention Items
    • What Models are Covered
    • Insurance & Bonding
    • Data Collection
    • Fee Restrictions
    • Company Certification
    • Disclosures

10:15 – 11:00 am Regulator Oversight – Phil Lehman, Esq., NC Attorney General Office

  • Enforcement
  • Attempted Subterfuges
  • State-Federal Cooperation
  • Legislative Approaches
  • Note: Phil is looking forward to meeting legitimate debt relief companies since there is skepticism in the AG community that many exist.

11:00 – 11:15 Break

11:15 – 12:15 Federal Compliance – FTC – Evan Zulow

  • TSR
    • Compliance Beyond Advanced Fees
  • Advertising & Marketing
    • Testimonials
    • Policy Statement Regarding Advertising Substantiation
    • Endorsements
    • Guarantees

12:15 – 12: 30 Break

12:30 – 1:45 Working Lunch Pending Statutory & Regulatory – Center for Responsible Lending

  • Active States
  • Bill Tracking
  • Industry Actions
  • Uniform Law Commission Update
  • Consumer Protection Groups
  • CFPB

1:45 – 2:00 Break

2:00 – 3:00 Current State Requirements – Loeb & Loeb – Mike Thurman

  • Debt Settlement Acts
  • Debt Adjustment Acts
  • Credit Services
  • Violations
  • Garnishment/ Time Barred Debt
  • Privacy
  • Collection laws

3:00 – 4:00 Debt Management & CCC’s – Consolidated Credit Counseling – Howard Dvorkin

  • The Future of Credit Counseling

4:00 – 5:00 The Cost of Non Compliance – Litigator -Michael Dye

  • Pit Falls
  • Defensible Positions
  • Trigger Events
  • Avoidance strategies
  • Forward Looking Plans
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Anticipated Second Day Agenda

9:00 – 9:15 Warm up

9:15 – 10:30 Start to Finish – Mike Bovee CRN

  • Target Marketing
  • Suitability Testing
  • File work flow,
  • Creditor interaction
  • Account completion
  • Credit Reporting
  • Self Savers Documentation
  • Trust Accounts
  • POA ins & outs

10:30 – 11:30 Role Play – What if Scenarios

11:30 – 12:30 Lunch

12:30 – 1:45 Technology Overview – Scott Johnson USDRinc

  • Improving Efficiencies
  • Reducing Operational Cost
  • Integration of Systems
  • Data Collection & Decision Making
  • Measurement & Monitoring

1:45 – 2:00 Break

2:00 – 2:45 Break Out Session

2:45 – 3:15 Compliance, Companies, Creditors & Clients – Scott Johnson USDRinc & Mike Bovee CRN

  • Time Barred Debt
  • Garnishment
  • Collection Laws
  • State Debt Relief

3:15 – 4:00 Round Table

4:00 – 4:15 Wrap up

What Past Attendees Have Said

The meeting was worthwhile and some very important topics were discussed. Alison Brown from the FTC brought a powerful message that really needs to reach more people. Every decision debt settlement companies are making right now are more important that any they have made previously. Everyone is watching and everyone is on notice. – Jenna Keehan, USOBA

The biggest benefit for me was realizing regulators are not to be feared if you’re a good company. They’re actually our biggest allies and they want us to communicate with them because they’re understaffed and need help identifying bad players. I plan on starting some dialogue with the Allison Brown and Lynne Weaver moving forward. Knowing this has not only opened up the possibility of enrolling clients in North Carolina for my company, but I have more peace of mind knowing that as long as I’m being honest and doing my best for our clients, I don’t need to have the constant fear of being targeted by a regulator just for being a debt settlement company. – Robert Zangrill, Franklin Debt Relief

The Rally in Raleigh in my opinion was a great success. Wow, there are actually players in the industry who care! Most interesting, aside from the individual perspectives, was the deep discussions with the NC Attorney General and the FTC. As I have posted on your site recently, ” this industry is in for some big changes”. Great meeting, I look forward to future gatherings. – Michael Reilly, Emerge America

Well, we certainly thought the whole thing was terrifically valuable. We owe you a debt of gratitude Steve for facilitating the event.

The AG from NC and participation of the FTC, Noteworld & even Jenna at USOBA were outstanding. We simply can not thank you enough for bringing all of that together.

I need to tell you I kept saying to Angelo that it felt surreal to be in a meeting like that, in our industry & surrounded by so many like minded people. I don’t consider (most) of the participants our competition, rather, I came away with a feeling of cohesiveness and unity. It’s nice to know I can call Damon, Andy, Alex or Scott and get some help with questions we sometimes struggle to find out ourselves. – Sean Ryan, Active Debt Solutions

It was absolutely worthwhile. Two big reasons why. It was great to openly discuss the debt settlement industry with a small group of like minded people. I don’t know of any other place that happens.

Secondly, listening to the AG’s office and FTC was a privilege. Getting access like that was amazing. I learned a lot and now have a very healthy and respectful impression of our government officials. – Chris Schornak, DSN

Class Size

The class size will be limited so register early. The purpose of keep the class small is so we all have an opportunity to interact closely and share as much information as possible.

Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.

Information About Raleigh

For information about why Raleigh is such a fun town, click here and here.

Meeting Location

For those that attended the last meeting you will be familiar with how great the hotel was.

The will be held at the Raleigh Marriott City Center hotel. 500 Fayetteville Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27601.


I will be sending out additional information to registrants but Raleigh’s airport, RDU, is a Southwest Airlines hub, along with some other carriers. Amtrak stops right downtown, RGH, and I-40, I-85 and I-95 are great ways to get in the area.


The meeting will be held at the Raleigh Marriott City Center so book your room here.


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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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