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Credit Counseling Industry

Do Regulators Treat Debt Relief Companies Unfairly?

Stone Balance

I was just sitting down with a friend in the debt relief industry who leans a lot further right than I do as a liberal lefty. I always enjoy the alternative point of view conversations on topics and that person does always make me smile because of the diverse points of view we often have on the same debt relief ... Read More »

Newly Blended Trade Association Moves Forward in Debt Relief Industry

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It’s always nice to see groups in the debt relief industry come together for the greater good. Effective in the early hours of 2016, two trade groups, mostly representing credit counseling organizations, decided to merge to become something bigger and better. The Association of Credit Counseling Professionals, Inc., known as ACCPros, and the Financial Counseling Association of America, formerly the ... Read More »

Consumer Credit Counseling Looking for Debt Management Sales Closers

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Let me be perfectly clear here, while this article is about a job posting from Trinity Debt Management, I’m not beating up on them. It’s just that their job posting is a good example to help consumers understand the reality of nonprofit debt help. And look, I totally understand the back office issues of needing to make ends meet and ... Read More »

The Death of the Traditional Debt Relief Industry for Now

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Filing Rates

Recently a couple of statements from people I know inside the debt relief industry have struck me. It seems there is a general lack of understanding why it is getting harder to sell debt relief services. Some blame the Consumer Financial protection Bureau (CFPB) for cracking down and some blame me for writing about the industry and scaring potential customers ... Read More »

New Website Focuses on Andris Pukke of Ameridebt Fame

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It seems some property owners of a development in Belize, named Sanctuary Belize, have taken concerns and matters into their own hands and launched a critical website for property owners there. The only reason those of us in the debt world should be interested is because whoever did the research and documentation of concerns, really focused on the history of ... Read More »

Hummingbird Credit Counseling Sues the United States of America

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Hummingbird Credit Counseling and Education has filed suit against Attorney General Eric Holder, Department of Justice, and Executive Office of United States Trustee. This suit asks for a declaratory judgment and injunctive relief. This case caught my attention because it’s not often you see a credit counseling company suing the USA and it appears this is yet another debt relief ... Read More »

Debt Management Credit Counseling Publishes Debt Consolidation Video

confused man

Last week Debt Management Credit Counseling sent out the press release below. Two things struck me as a bit odd about it so I emailed the company to ask for clarification. As of yet I’ve not heard back from them so I’ll just publish the release and my observations and if they ever respond, I’ll update the post with their ... Read More »

WARNINGS About Credit Counseling Programs and Long Term Debt Repayment Plans

Adult Ed - Questions

In my first article in this series I outlined many benefits you get from working with a credit counseling agency. But there are also drawbacks to enrolling in a DMP (debt management plan) in order to get credit card payment relief. And the concerns are not minor, which is why the word WARNING is capitalized. As with any of the ... Read More »

Care One and Bernie Dancel Say What!

stressed man

As part of my junk mail program a reader sent in a recent copy of a letter they say they received from CareOne that has a very fit picture of founder Bernie Dancel on it. There is only one big problem, the domain name listed on the bottom of the letter, CareOneInfo.com, isn’t actually owned by CareOne anymore and it ... Read More »

Money Management International Accused in Kick-Backs in Class Action Settlement

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Now here is something you don’t get to witness often, if at all. Apparently there is a bit of disturbed blood milling about in the credit counseling world right now. In just doing some routine checking on activity I came across a very, very odd letter from the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies (AICCCA) to the U.S. District ... Read More »

Still Dealing With Andris Pukke, DebtWorks, and AmeriDebt

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Not much shocks me in the debt world but this announcement from the Federal Trade Commission, did. The FTC just announced, “FTC Sends More Than $1.79 Million in Refunds to Consumers Defrauded by AmeriDebt Scam.” The AmeriDebt case goes all the way back to November 19, 2003 and the FTC is still dealing with recovering money from harmed credit counseling ... Read More »

Debt Relief Providers Still Crying From Low Delinquencies

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According to the credit reporting agency TransUnion, credit card delinquency has hit a seven year low. That’s good for consumer but not so good for credit counseling, debt settlement, or bankruptcy providers. The national credit card delinquency rate declined to its lowest level in at least seven years, dropping from 1.27% in Q2 2013 to 1.16% in Q2 2014. The ... Read More »

AmeriFree Says I Got It All Wrong

happy woman in wheelchair outdoors beach showing victory sign

In a recent article “Why Isn’t AmeriFree Licensed in Their Own State?” a reader asked why AmeriFree did not appear to be registered to offer debt relief services in Arizona. As I said in the article, I had previously reached out to AmeriFree for a statement or response and heard nothing. Well today I have. A John Corey said, “AmeriFree ... Read More »

Why Did First Stone Credit Counseling Pay Commissions?

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A reader wanted to know why the public returns for First Stone Credit Counseling listed commissions as an expense since nonprofit credit counselors are not allowed to pay commissions under 501(q). – Source A visit to their site at firststone.com found a curious title to their site. It seems their primary focus is not credit counseling in the title but ... Read More »

Credit Counseling Agencies Need Credit Counseling Help

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Richard Burnett of the Orlando Sentinel recently wrote an interesting piece about the realities of modern non-profit credit counseling and how they need help. With demand dropping, existing credit counseling agencies are scrambling to find new avenues of income. Credit counseling agencies are turning to trying to sell student loan assistance and one agency reports having a pilot program to ... Read More »

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