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Home > Author Archives: Steve Rhode (page 2)

Author Archives: Steve Rhode

CFPB Concerned About Widespread Servicing Failures Reported by Student Loan Borrowers


CFPB and U.S. Departments of Education and Treasury Issue Framework for Servicing Reforms, Bureau Prioritizes Stamping Out Illegal Actions WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a report outlining widespread servicing failures reported by both federal and private student loan borrowers. Consumers describe companies using a wide range of sloppy, patchwork practices that can create obstacles ... Read More »

    Millions of Federal Student Loans Lining Up to Be Eliminated and Borrowers Repaid

    Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 10.57.02 AM

    As a consumer debt expert for decades I’ve developed a pretty good sense of reading the tea leaves of debt. Sometimes this means making some sense out of puzzle pieces well in advance of assembly. I’m getting that same strong sense that student loan debtors are on the verge of a bold new ability to discharge massive amounts of federal ... Read More »

      More California Mortgage Modification Scammers Head to Jail

      Dead man walking - Sad prisoner with handcuffs in prison with orange clothes

      Four people who worked at a Rancho Cucamonga business that offered bogus loan modification programs to thousands of financially distressed homeowners – victims who lost more than $7 million when they paid for services that were never provided – were sentenced today to federal prison, with one of the leaders of the scheme being ordered to spend 20 years in ... Read More »

        Not a Shocker – Fraud and Intimidation in Marketing Pills, Powders, or Potions


        The Federal Trade Commission is taking action against the Florida-based marketers of a line of weight-loss supplements who allegedly made baseless claims for their products, and then threatened to enforce “gag clause” provisions against consumers to stop them from posting negative reviews and testimonials online. In a complaint filed in federal court, the FTC alleges that Roca Labs, Inc.; Roca ... Read More »

          Rut Ro – Data Breach at Hilton Properties


          If you recently stayed at a Hilton Hotel, Embassy Suites, Doubletree, Hampton Inn and Suites, or Waldorf Astoria – a hack may have exposed your financial details. Banks have identified a pattern of fraud that strongly suggests certain payment systems in these Hilton Hotel properties in several locations were hacked, exposing customer payment card information. Hilton confirmed that it is ... Read More »

            My Car is All Worn Out. What Should I Do?

            The Chevy Spark I drove recently.

            Question: Dear Steve, I need two new cars(used cars) but I don’t know if I should fix these old cars or trade them in and buy 2 used ones. My 2007 Kia Optima has 165K miles on it and wont pass inspection-needs catalytic converter and new tires (maybe $1500?). My ex-wife has Kia Sedona with 100K miles and needs new ... Read More »

              This Guy Gets How to Deal With Debt

              Debt Settlement Advice

              Bill Westrom just sent in an article to me to post on my site and it was so on track with what I have been trying to get across to people. I had to share it with you. Bill understands that dealing with debt is about education, understanding, introspection, and not forcing the solutions to fit the problems. Far ... Read More »

                Debt Collector Claims Debt Collector Owes Them Money


                In a twist of irony, National Credit Adjusters, a Kansas based delinquent accounts receivable company has filed suit against Cred X Debt Recovery, James Sauer, Jeffrey Schultz, and Richard Schultz. National Credit Adjusters claimed the following in their suit. “On or about May 24, 2012, NCA contracted with Defendant Cred X to have Defendant collect unpaid accounts on NCA’s behalf. ... Read More »

                  It’s Over – Debt Relief Trial of Otto Berges and Consumer Protection Counsel

                  closeup of a gavel on cash, from above

                  In checking on recent updates, it appears the court case I reported on regarding Otto Berges, Consumer Protection Counsel, Berges Law Group, and Debt Be Gone; is over after a quick day or so trial. For those that want to read the backstory, click here. It looks like Berges and others named in the case by the consumer have lost ... Read More »

                    Reporter Discovers Student Loan Shit Your Pants Syndrome #SYP

                    Empty toilet paper roll hanging in a restroom

                    Question: Dear Steve, I borrowed a grand total of $88,000 in private loans (Sallie Mae) for college. Struggles with health (migraines, vertigo, etc.) forced me to take nearly six years to finish my degree. Since that time, the total has ballooned out to $119,316.52 as I’ve only been able to pay the interest and have had to use forbearance requests ... Read More »

                      Four Years Later, Consumers Get Pennies From Debt Relief Scam

                      business, people, bankruptcy and failure concept - close up of businessman showing empty pockets over blue background

                      Four years ago now the California Department of Justice swooped in an shut down an enterprise they claimed was taking advantage of consumers who were seeking mortgage modification or actions against the mortgage company. More can be read here. The parties named in the original action included: Attorneys Processing Center, LLC, also doing business as Attorney Processing Center, and Processing ... Read More »

                        Department of Education Tips Hand on Student Loan Defense


                        The Department of Education is scheduled to publish a request that seems to tip their hand about a borrower defense that could allow lots of students from having to repay their student loans. Clever attorneys will find a way to confirm if schools have violated state laws, as the government has claimed some have. If proven the school had violate ... Read More »

                          Where Did World Law Go? This is Who to Call.

                          Abstract Businessman jets off with Rocket Pack.

                          I’m getting a number of people contacting me who are freaked out they can’t contact anyone at World Law. For more information on the legal misfortunes of World Law, click here. The court appointed receiver for World Law is: Robb Evans and Associates, LLC 11450 Sheldon Street Sun Valley, California 91352-1121 Phone: (818) 768-8100 Until clients hear from the receiver ... Read More »

                            Debt Relief Attorney Kills Mother. Another Loses License.

                            Young man with a funny perplexed expression, expressive on his face, isolated on a white background

                            Tragic is all I can think of to describe the subsequent events that happened to United Law Group and Brookstone Law. United Law Group (ULG) was an Irvine California operation that was selling hope to avoid the loss of your home to foreclosure. You can click here for past articles on ULG. In 2010, United Law Group filed bankruptcy. In ... Read More »

                              Encore Capital Group and Portfolio Recovery Associates Nailed for Deceptive Tactics to Collect Bad Debts


                              Today the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) took action against the nation’s two largest debt buyers and collectors for using deceptive tactics to collect bad debts. The Bureau found that Encore Capital Group and Portfolio Recovery Associates bought debts that were potentially inaccurate, lacking documentation, or unenforceable. Without verifying the debt, the companies collected payments by pressuring consumers with false ... Read More »

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