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Why Did First Stone Credit Counseling Pay Commissions?

family portrait

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 »

    Rescue One Financial Still Sending Mailers for Loans

    Front of alleged mailer sent in by reader.

    A reader just sent in the following mailer they recently received from Rescue One Financial. I’ve been critical in the past of the apparent lack of a lenders license by Rescue One Financial even though they were seemed to be selling the offer of a loan. The allegation before was these mailers were funneling people into debt settlement programs instead ... Read More »

      Scammers Prove They Are Assholes

      scammer

      According to the Federal Trade Commission new scam emails are being sent out that try to trick people into clicking on links that will download malware to their computers. The latest scam takes the trick to a new low. Scammers are sending bogus emails with the subject line “funeral notification.” The message appears to be from a legitimate funeral home, ... Read More »

        Affiliate Marketer Settles With FTC for All He Made

        ftc

        An affiliate marketer has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that he was responsible for sending millions of unwanted text messages to consumers that deceptively promised “free” gift cards and electronics. The marketer, Jason Q. Cruz of West Bend, Wisc., was a subject in a series of FTC complaints targeting the senders of deceptive spam text messages. In its ... Read More »

          FBI Scam Email

          scam

          SCAM Alert! Beware of the following scam email making the rounds: “From: “Federal Bureau Investigation (FBI)” Date: December 31, 2013 at 8:53:45 PM EST To: BCC Subject: Re:Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Reply-To: Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Counter-terrorism Division and Cyber Crime Division J. Edgar. Hoover Building Washington DC Dear Beneficiary, Series of meetings have been held over the ... Read More »

            Is Consumer Assistance Project Spoofing a Nonprofit Past?

            The signature Marlene Funk says is faked.

            I received the following email from a Marlene Funk regarding an article from September, 2013 titled Consumer Assistance Project Website Raises Real Concerns. Be Careful. Marlene Funk was the organizer of the original company the student loan assistance company Consumer Assistance Project grew from. Ms. Funk stated, “I created Non-Profit Guardian Services, which has nothing to do wih Consumer Assistance ... Read More »

              Loan Scammers Turn Around and Get Nailed Again by FTC

              ftc

              At the request of the Federal Trade Commission, a U.S. district court judge in Florida has issued a contempt order against Bryon Wolf and Roy Eliasson, two key individuals who operated a deceptive marketing scheme since 2009. According to the order, the defendants violated a December 2008 permanent injunction and final order that barred them from making a range of ... Read More »

                Don’t Overlook the Insolvency Exemption for 1099-C Cancelation of Debt Income

                taxform

                It’s that time of year again, when people are receiving 1099-Cs for debts forgiven or canceled during 2013. Perhaps you were in a debt settlement program with successful results, and a lot of debt was forgiven. Or it may be that your creditor decided to formally cancel an old delinquent account to close out their records. You might have taken ... Read More »

                  Jacoby & Meyers Bankruptcy Goes Dark

                  waving

                  A tipster (send in your tips here) sent in a message about the Jacoby & Meyers Bankruptcy site had a strange message on it. For those that might not remember, Jacoby & Meyers Bankruptcy was created when Macey Bankruptcy Law merged with Jacoby & Meyers. As of right now the Jacoby & Meyers website is essentially gone. It does have ... Read More »

                    New York Goes After Companies Offering Student Loan Assistance

                    student loan debt

                    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced today that his newly established Student Protection Unit took its first official action by issuing subpoenas to 13 student debt relief companies as part of an investigation into concerns about potentially misleading advertising, improper fees, and other consumer protection problems in that industry. In particular, the Department of Financial Services’ (DFS) Student Protection Unit is ... Read More »

                      Beware of the Capital Currency Control Certificate Scam

                      scam

                      Fictitious correspondence, allegedly issued by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) regarding funds purportedly under the control of the OCC and possibly other government entities, is in circulation. Correspondence may be distributed via e-mail, fax, or postal mail. Any document claiming that the OCC is involved in holding any funds for the benefit of any individual or ... Read More »

                        Student Loan Assistance Insider Blows the Whistle to Warn Consumers

                        scammer

                        I’ve been critical of the wave of student loan assistance companies that are exploding on the scene. Some of these companies are charging huge fees for items the consumer can do themselves. The statement below comes from someone who claimed to work inside one of these companies. The company name is less important than the issues they raise about the ... Read More »

                          TeleCheck Bitch Slapped by FTC Over Inaccuracies

                          bitch slap copy

                          TeleCheck Services, Inc., one of the nation’s largest check authorization service companies, along with its associated debt-collection entity, TRS Recovery Services, Inc., have agreed to pay $3.5 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). The penalty matches the second-largest ever obtained by the FTC in an FCRA case. Earlier this year, ... Read More »

                            4 Mistakes You May Be Making With Your Tax Refund When You Have Debt

                            Woman Whispers a Secret

                            by 
Paula Langguth Ryan, Mediator, Consumer Advocate and Communications Consultant Got debt? Thinking of using your tax refund check to play catch up or pay down a balance? Before you act, read this article. Most people who have debt make the wrong choices with their tax refunds. End result: you wind up even more stressed than before you got your ... Read More »

                              Credit Counseling Agencies Need Credit Counseling Help

                              stressed man

                              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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