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New Website Focuses on Andris Pukke of Ameridebt Fame

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 … Read more

Hummingbird Credit Counseling Sues the United States of America

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 … Read more

Debt Management Credit Counseling Publishes Debt Consolidation Video

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 … Read more

WARNINGS About Credit Counseling Programs and Long Term Debt Repayment Plans

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. … Read more

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

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 … Read more

Still Dealing With Andris Pukke, DebtWorks, and AmeriDebt

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 … Read more

Debt Relief Providers Still Crying From Low Delinquencies

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 … Read more

Why Did First Stone Credit Counseling Pay Commissions?

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 … Read more

Credit Counseling Agencies Need Credit Counseling Help

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 … Read more

Advantage Credit Counseling Service Makes Perplexing Statement

Advantage Credit Counseling Service has a “white paper” out that purports to reveal what a certified credit counseling agency can do for you. Credit counselors have good programs that are best suited to people who are behind on their bills but can afford at least the regular monthly payment plus continue to save both for … Read more

FTC Nails American Mortgage Consulting Group and The Debt School

Bitch Slap

The defendants in two separate alleged scams have settled charges with the Federal Trade Commission and will be banned from providing mortgage- and debt-relief services. The cases are part of the FTC’s continuing crackdown on scams targeting consumers in financial distress, including debt relief and credit repair scams, and mortgage relief scams. American Mortgage Consulting … Read more

CRL Report Results in Silence From the Debt Relief Industry

The other day I published the debt settlement recommendation report from The Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), click here. As vocal as critics have been in attacking this site and myself for being outspoken about consumer unfriendly debt relief practices I felt certain people would have comments to offer about the CRL recommendations. But silence, … Read more

Credit Counseling Services and the Bankruptcy Conundrum

A press release out by Advantage Credit Counseling Service drew me to their site today. – Source. While there I came across a good example of the ethical conundrum facing nonprofit credit counselors today. Advance Credit Counseling Service is not alone in dealing with this problem. According to the Advantage Credit Counseling Service website they … Read more