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Home > Author Archives: Steve Rhode (page 8)

Author Archives: Steve Rhode

Car Title Lenders Deceived Consumers Says FTC

ftc

The Federal Trade Commission has taken action for the first time against two car title lenders, reaching settlements that will require them to stop their use of deceptive advertising to market title loans. A car title loan is typically a high cost, short-term loan, secured with the consumer’s car title. In administrative complaints issued against two title lenders, First American ... Read More »

    A Look at a Cosigners Navient Student Loans Discharged in Bankruptcy

    Student Loans Concept

    As part of what has become an ongoing look at student loans discharged in bankruptcy the example today is where a cosigner discharged their liability for federal student loans with Navient Solutions. This case is yet another example of how the financial hardship of having to repay unmanageable student loans can lead to a discharge of the student loan debt. ... Read More »

      My Ex Was Supposed to Pay the Debt in the Divorce But They Are Coming After Me

      Divorce

      “Dear Steve, I was divorced in 2007. It was an amicable split and, as stipulated in the divorce decree, I took some of our combined debt and she took one of our debts in the form of a bank credit card. She remarried and together she and her new spouse decided not to pay on the debt that she assumed ... Read More »

        Diploma Mills Halted by FTC

        ftc

        The principal owners of two Florida-based online diploma mills are permanently banned from marketing and selling academic degrees under settlements with the Federal Trade Commission. Alexander Wolfram and IDM Services, LLC, and Maria Garcia have settled charges that they deceived consumers into enrolling in their programs by claiming they could obtain “official” and accredited high school diplomas and use them ... Read More »

          Should I Payoff My Navient Student Loans or Save for Retirement?

          retirement

          “Dear Steve, I’m 34 years old, single, graduated a college when I was 26. Currently I have 2 student loans: 1. Navient Student Loans: $ 25,387.21, 5.25%, monthly payment of $ 235.41 2. AES Student Loans: $17,152.33, 5.125%, monthly payment of $ 186.68 I have about $10k in a saving account (with 1% interest), and a rollover IRA with about ... Read More »

            They Tell Me My Parent PLUS Loans Are Not Eligible for Help

            Drowning swimmer

            “Dear Steve, My children were living with me when they filled out their FAFSA forms. I ended up with over $20,000 in Plus parent loans as a result even though my only income at the time was child support. Can parent student loans (PLUS loans) be either transferred to the now adult children or be discharged in bankruptcy? Being parent ... Read More »

              Identity Thieves Con the Department of Education Out of Student Loan Money

              mans hands behind bars in jail or prison

              We’ve heard a lot in the news about people stealing information on people and using that personal information to file for tax refunds. It’s a growing form of identity theft. But in a new twist, Ronzell and Stephanie Mitchell were using stolen personal information to scam the Department of Education out of $270,000 of student loan money. According to WJLA ... Read More »

                Half Million Dollars of Federal Student Loans Discharged in Bankruptcy

                bankruptcy-1

                So many people continue to assume student loan debt can’t be discharged in bankruptcy. Even bankruptcy attorneys perpetuate this myth as well. In previous articles, that you can find here, I’ve shown specific examples of both federal and private students loans discharged. I’ve even pointed out broad niches of student loan debt not protected by bankruptcy, in this article. But ... Read More »

                  California Fair Debt Buying Practices Act Gives Consumers Rights

                  law books

                  If you are being hounded by a debt collector over an old debt and you live in California, you need to pay attention to the Fair Debt Buying Practices Act. Under that new California law the buyer of old debts who is now attempting to collect on the debt has certain hurdles to jump over before you have to pay. ... Read More »

                    Cell Phone Provider to Pay Millions for Throttling Data. Refunds Available.

                    blank screen mobile in woman hands

                    TracFone, the largest prepaid mobile provider in the U.S., has agreed to pay $40 million to the Federal Trade Commission to settle charges that it deceived millions of consumers with hollow promises of “unlimited” data service. The FTC’s complaint against TracFone alleges that since 2009, TracFone has advertised prepaid monthly mobile plans for about $45 per month with “unlimited” data ... Read More »

                      Attorney Mitchell Stein Gets 204 Months in Federal Prison. Refunds to Begin.

                      time and money

                      It’s hard to believe it has been nearly four years I’ve been writing about Mitchell Stein, an attorney out of California who, at the time, was involved in the mass joinder approach of selling consumers hope they could sue their mortgage company. Stein seemed to be at the forefront of the movement that was selling litigation to consumers all across ... Read More »

                        Discover Bank Debt Consolidation Offer Review

                        Discover Debt Consolidation Offer 2

                        Is your mailbox getting stuffed with offers from creditors? Here is a recent offer from Discover Bank that appears to be a debt consolidation loan to pay off debt. In order to help people better understand the offer, I’ll break it down for you below, page by page, and point out what I think are the important points. While the ... Read More »

                          Consumers in Debt Starting to Default a Bit More

                          process

                          Data through December 2014, released by S&P Dow Jones Indices and Experian for the S&P/Experian Consumer Credit Default Indices, a comprehensive measure of changes in consumer credit defaults, continued to show an increase in default rates. The national composite posted a default rate of 1.11% in December, up four basis points from November 2014. The first mortgage default rate rose ... Read More »

                            When I Retire Will My Social Security Be Reduced Because of Student Loans?

                            calculator

                            “Dear Steve, I took out Parent Plus loans for both of my children while they were in school. Each of them also have unsubsidized student loans which they are paying off. Once both children were out of college, I consolidated the Parent Plus loans into one and have been paying them regularly for the past 10 years. I am 63 ... Read More »

                              Outlook Email Migration – Scam Alert

                              scam email screen

                              Beware of the following email being sent out that appears to come from an official government source. The email reads: “From: Cook, Bryant D Sent: Tuesday, January 27, 2015 2:18 PM To: Cook, Bryant D Subject: Help Desk Dear Email User, Please be prepared for all systems to be offline for maintenance today. We are currently Migrating your outlook account ... Read More »

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