I’m Struggling on Disability Income. Is American Consumer Credit Counseling Reputable?

Question: Dear Steve, I’m living on permanent disability and dealing with credit card minimum payments that are eating most of my monthly income. I have been told that ACCC American Consumer Credit Counseling (the nonprofit organization) is great at reducing interest rates and monthly payments by 50%. Is this true? Are they reputable? What could … Read more

What Debt Relief Companies Get Horribly Wrong When Helping Seniors

Almost half of seniors have incomes within 200% of the poverty line. They are classified as economically vulnerable and retire owing more debt than ever before. It is natural then that seniors with financial problems would search for someone to help them. Before the internet, communities had a local Consumer Credit Counseling Agency that would … Read more

When Bad Debt Advice Hides Behind Good Advice

I just saw a Houston Texas TV story about Suzanne Black, an elderly 70 years old woman involved with a nonprofit debt management company, Money Management International. She paid $63,000 over the last five years with their help to get out of debt. While this may sound all fine and good on the surface, I … Read more

We’ve Been to Credit Counseling But Should We File For Bankruptcy?

Dear Steve Hi! I am a piano teacher, and due to the bad economy have very few students, even though I am used to having plenty. We just moved because we could no longer afford where we lived. We gave up our house in a deed in lieu of foreclosure. My husband took a cut … Read more

Debt Management Plan Providers Need Budget Advice to Stay in Business

We are creeping up on nearly two decades of account fee restrictions for nonprofit debt management plan providers. The counseling groups fought hard and heavy in the early 2000s to limit the fees they could charge consumers for budget advice and debt management plans. For example, in 2003, the State of Maryland enacted The Debt … Read more

Debt Settlement Kind of Wins Over Credit Counseling in CFPB Analysis

Let's say a prayer for credit counseling to survive against debt settlement

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) just released a CFPB Report on Debt Settlement and Credit Counseling that is partially helpful. The issues surrounding debt settlement and credit counseling have so many nuances and facets that general look at trends in the two solutions is nearly always inaccurate. If you focus on just the debt … Read more

Why Would My Credit Card Company Rather Have Me File Bankruptcy Than Work With Me?

Question: Dear Steve, I owe a lot of cc debt but have never missed or been late. I’m probably their most profitable client! I’ve asked for reduced rates, but been declined, leaving me few alternatives. Why would an issuer rather force me into bankruptcy rather than offering this relief? Karen Answer: Dear Karen, Yes. Logic … Read more

The Ultimate Consumer Guide to Checking Out a Debt Relief Company Before You Sign On the Line

It’s probably a bad idea to start off with a negative but here it is, people in the debt relief industry are going to hate this article. Even friends of mine in the industry will be bummed. And why, because this article will tell you everything you need to look for when checking out a … Read more

Inside Scoop From Creditors on Debt Relief Plans Like Credit Counseling and Debt Settlement

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a very interesting report that paints a very different position on debt settlement than you might hear from say a credit counseling agency. While non-profit credit counseling agencies may talk down for-profit debt settlement companies, creditors seem to be embracing them. According to the CFPB, it appears a … Read more

Choosing a Debt Management Plan? Here are 9 Things You Should Know.

The majority of Americans carry some sort of debt — and many of them struggle with it. According to an analysis from The Urban Institute, 71 million Americans had debt in collections in 2017. If you have so much debt that you feel you’ll never see the end of it, you may need to enroll in … Read more

First Fidelity Services – Scam, Complaint, Review, Or Praise?

Please share your experience with this debt relief company and provide your review and feedback, in the comments section below. The goal of this page is to allow people to share information that may be important to help others to make a more informed decision regarding their experience with this debt relief company. Here are … Read more

Should My Son Consider Credit Counseling or Bankruptcy? – Carla

Question: Dear Steve, My son and his wife are struggling with credit card and other unsecured debt. They are still able to pay all the bills each month, but are only paying minimum payments. They have about $20,000 in debt. My son had already filed bankruptcy once, back in 2002, I believe. He was not … Read more

Credit Counseling Opportunity – Helping Farmers in Financial Trouble

An article out of North Dakota describes credit counseling opportunities for agencies and farmers. In North Dakota the Department of Agriculture is responsible for the North Dakota Mediation Service. The service helps financially distressed farmers and ranch­ers through assistance with credit and financial matters and resolving disputes. These mediations are facilitated by independent mediators or … Read more

Different Options for Debt Relief – Finding the Right Solution

Imagine you were sick. Really sick. Sick enough to go to a doctor or even a hospital. Perhaps you even looked up your symptoms on the Internet, visited WebMD, did a ton of internet research and were convinced that you needed a professional to help you get better – or things could get much, much … Read more