I’ve previously published information about the July 2, 2012 settlement reached between the State of Illinois and Legal Helpers Debt Resolution AKA Macey, Aleman, Hyslip & Searns.
Here are the details of the filed settlement and I would be stunned to see how Legal Helpers Debt Resolution could call this a victory supporting their position as an attorney model debt settlement company that is exempt from the laws of Illinois. It appears they got slapped for everything and it does not appear they can operate to offer debt settlement in their own home state.
You see it appears that when it comes to Illinois consumers LHDR has to fork over big bucks. The settlement agreement states LHDR has agreed to the following facts and owes the following money:
A. Defendant has agreed to stop and is permanently enjoined from marketing, offering for sale or representation, accepting money or engaging with any new Illinois consumers for the provision of any debt settlement services.
B. Within fourteen (14) days of entry of this Final Judgment and Consent Decree, the Defendant shall dismiss the case it filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against the Plaintiffs. ~
C. By their execution of this Final Judgment and Consent Decree, the Plaintiffs and Defendant agree to a settlement to fully resolve, settle, and discharge all civil claims, disputes, and causes of action that the Plaintiffs asserted or could have asserted against the Defendant pursuant to the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act, Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act, and the Debt Settlement Consumer Protection Act related to the conduct alleged in the Complaint and First Amended Complaint for Injunctive and Other Relief filed herein, up to and including the date judgment is entered.
The Court enters a judgment in favor ofthe Plaintiffs and against the Defendant, Legal Helpers Debt Resolution, LLC for restitution in the amount of $2,100,000.00. Payment shall be in the form of a cashier’s or certiiied check made payable to the “Attomey General’s Consumer “Trust Account.”
The monies paid for restitution pursuant to this Final Judgment and Consent Decree shall be paid to Illinois consumers who were formerly, or are currently, enrolled in Defendant’s debt settlement program. The Attorney General shall have discretion in apportioning and disbursing restitution in an amount and manner she deems appropriate, and the Attorney General may prioritize payments to consumers in her sole discretion.
The Defendant shall fully cooperate with the Attomey General in good faith in the Attorney General’s administration and issuance of such refunds, including responding to reasonable requests by the Attorney General for customer information or any other information reasonably necessary to effectuate the refund process.
Payment in the amount of $2,100,000.00 is due as follows: $700,000.00 within two weeks of the date judgment is entered, $700,000.00 within 44 calendar days after the judgment is entered, $700,000.00 within 74 days after the judgment is entered. Each payment shall be mailed or hand-delivered to the attention of Attorney General of Illinois, Consumer Fraud Bureau, 500 South Second Street, Springfield, Illinois 62706.
Any monies remaining after the distribution of restitution shall be deposited into the “Illinois Attorney General Court Ordered and Voluntary Compliance Payment Projects Hind” for Consumer Enforcement and Education and may be used by the Illinois Attorney General for any purpose authorized by section 7(e) of the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act, 815 ILCS 505/7(e).
The Court enters a judgment in favor of the Plaintiffs and against the Defendant in the amount of $150,000.00. The Defendant shall pay the amount of $ 150,000.00 to the Attorney General Court Ordered and Voluntary Compliance Payment Projects Fund for Consumer Enforcement and Education which may be used by the Illinois Attorney General for any purpose authorized by section 7(e) of the Consumer Fraud Act. 815 ILCS 505/7(e).
Payment shall be in the form of a cashier’s check or certiiied check made payable to the “Attorney General Court Ordered and Voluntary Compliance Payment Projects Fund for Consumer Enforcement and Education”. Payment in the amount of $ 150,000.00 is due on or before (date judgment is entered) and shall be mailed or hand-delivered to the attention of Attorney General of Illinois, Consumer Fraud Bureau, 500 South Second Street, Springfield, Illinois 62706.
Defendant shall pay the amount of $40,000.00 to the Department of Financial & Professional Regulation as reimbursement for its costs. It shall be payable by certified or cashier’s check to the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation, for – deposit to the Financial Institutions Fund. Such payment shall be mailed or hand-delivered to the attention of IDFPR, Office of the Secretary, 9th Flr., 100 W. Randolph Street, Chicago, IL 60601 on or before the date this Judgment and Consent Decree is entered by the Court. – Source
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