For those facing a large amount of debt in Tennessee, there are many options for seeking relief. However, not every company offering help is legitimate and some may be looking to take advantage of unsuspecting consumers. Because of this, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act protects consumers and sets forth guidelines that companies offering debt relief must follow.
Customers who lost money to a company that was running a debt relief scam will soon see some of their money returned. The company had promised them assistance with paying off their debts, and the customers submitted monthly payments for this purpose. However, the company used part of that money to pay itself for fees that it had not disclosed to the customers. This followed a previous civil case brought by the Federal Trade Commission, which was settled out of court. In that case, some of the charges the company faced included calling people who expressly asked them not to, withholding its identity when contacting people and harassing customers with excessive phone calls.
In addition, the men who ran the company represented themselves as legal professionals when they were not. One of the men involved with the scheme recently pleaded guilty to charges levied by the U.S. Postal Service and the Department of Justice. As a result, $1.2 million dollars will be refunded to victims of the scam. He also received a prison sentence of two years.
People who receive offers for assistance with their debts should practice caution. Anyone who is struggling with financial problems such as this may wish to contact an experienced attorney.
Source: The Consumerist, “Debt Relief Scammer Will Spend Two Years In Prison, Pay $1.2M In Refunds,” Ashlee Kieler, Nov. 21, 2016