Steven Depolo

Debt Relief Scammer Will Spend Two Years In Prison, Pay $1.2M In Refunds

Four years after federal regulators shut down a debt relief operation that promised to help customers pay down credit card debt, but in reality only relieved customers of their cash, a man who worked for the scheme has been ordered to spend two years in prison and to refund $1.2 million to his victims. [More]

(Rich)

Feds Shut Down Student Loan Debt Relief Operation That Collected $3.6M In Illegal Fees

Federal law bars debt relief services from receiving upfront fees before they’ve even renegotiated a single debt for a customer. But one student loan debt relief operation allegedly took in nearly $3.6 million in illegal fees, only to enroll borrowers in programs that are already available for free.
[More]

Steven Depolo

Debt Relief Company Must Pay $170M For Illegally Charging Customers

Back in 2013, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sued Morgan Drexen, accusing the debt relief company of deceiving customers with promises of reducing their debt and charging illegal upfront fees to do so. Today, the Bureau announced a federal district court approved a final judgement requiring the company to pay $132.8 million in restitution and a $40 million civil penalty.  [More]

frankieleon

Feds Shut Down Illegal Student Loan Debt Relief Operation

Last December, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed a lawsuit against Student Loan Processing.US, a debt relief operation, that allegedly reaped millions of dollars from thousands of consumer by promising to provide repayment benefits that come free of charge with federal student loans. Today, the agency took steps to put an end to the organization once and for all.  [More]

Feds Forgive $103M In Debt For Nearly 7,000 Former Corinthian College Students

Feds Forgive $103M In Debt For Nearly 7,000 Former Corinthian College Students

Nearly 7,000 additional former students of defunct for-profit chain Corinthian College will have their loan debt erased by the federal government. While the $103 million tab sounds like a lot, it’s only a fraction of the billions of dollars that Wyotech, Heald College and Everest University charged in tuition.  [More]

Operator Of Bogus Debt-Relief Scheme Must Return $7.9M To Harmed Consumers

Operator Of Bogus Debt-Relief Scheme Must Return $7.9M To Harmed Consumers

The operator of a bogus debt relief scheme that federal regulates say only left consumers deeper in debt must provide some actual assistance to those affected by the program in the form of a $7.9 million judgment imposed by the Federal Trade Commission.  [More]

CFPB Sues Debt Relief Firm, Alleging It Bilked Customers For $67M

CFPB Sues Debt Relief Firm, Alleging It Bilked Customers For $67M

Being in debt can be paralyzing, leaving some people with the feeling like they’ll never climb their way out of the hole. So when a company promises it can help ease that burden, it might some like a good idea to spend even more money in the hope that you’ll ultimately be pointed in the right financial direction. Federal regulators say one debt relief operation took in $67 million from customers in need of help, but most of that money just went to the firm’s fees while the customers’ debts continued to pile up. [More]

Regulators Shut Down Debt Relief Operation That Took Millions From Consumers

Regulators Shut Down Debt Relief Operation That Took Millions From Consumers

The Florida Attorney General’s Office and the Federal Trade Commission make a pretty effective pair when it comes to putting an end to companies and operations taking advantage of consumers. Just a day after the regulator and state’s attorney general teamed up to sue a company behind medical alert robocalls, the two entities announced they shut down a debt relief scheme that took million from consumers with credit card debt. [More]

CFPB Asks Google, Bing & Yahoo To Help Stop Student Loan Debt Scams That Imply Affiliation With Feds

CFPB Asks Google, Bing & Yahoo To Help Stop Student Loan Debt Scams That Imply Affiliation With Feds

The Internet is teeming with scammers, fraudsters, and hustlers determined to part consumers from their money, and as a $1.2 trillion venture, student loans often present an attractive avenue for these ne’er-do-wells. In order to better protect individuals from such schemes, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is enlisting the help of the country’s major search engines.  [More]

(Sapurah Lashari)

Senators Chastise Govt. For Making Money Off Struggling Student Loan Borrowers, Not Offering Enough Relief

For several years now the government has offered federal student loan forgiveness programs aimed at helping borrowers to avoid defaulting on their debts. While recent reports have shown that the popularity of the programs has exceeded expectations, a group of six senators say the Department of Education could do more given the billions of dollars in payments it receives from federal loans each year. [More]

(Alan Cleaver)

FTC Files Lawsuit To Shut Down Deceptive Payday Loan Debt Relief Operation

It’s probably safe to assume that consumers stuck in the payday loan debt-trap have enough financial issues without being deceived by a company promising to make their debts disappear. There may be one less unsavory debt relief company around after the Federal Trade Commission sued to stop an operation that targeted millions of consumers. [More]

(Adam Fagen)

CFPB Takes Action Against Two Alleged Student Debt Relief Scams

Student loan borrowers have enough to worry about, so they shouldn’t have to deal with being hounded by so-called debt relief companies promising to provide consumers with repayment benefits that actually come free of charge with federal loans. Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau took action to put a stop to two such relief scams that reaped millions of dollars from thousands of consumers. [More]

(Daquella manera)

CFPB: Company Should Pay $7M For Processing Illegal Fees For Debt-Relief Services

Charging up front for debt-relief services without any actual results for the customer is illegal. But despite that, says the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a payment processing company processed millions of dollars worth of illegal fees from consumers.

[More]

Feds Say Bogus Debt-Relief Operation Just Left Consumers Deeper In Debt

Feds Say Bogus Debt-Relief Operation Just Left Consumers Deeper In Debt

Being elbows-deep in debt is a scary thing, so when a service tells you that you can “become debt free and enjoy financial independence” and that it can reduce how much you owe by “70 to 80 percent on average including all fees,” it might be tempting to give it a shot. But don’t be shocked when you end up scammed out of whatever money you have. [More]

Feds Shut Down Debt Relief Companies That Only Relieved Customers Of Their Cash

Feds Shut Down Debt Relief Companies That Only Relieved Customers Of Their Cash

We occasionally have the TV turned on in the background here at the Consumerist Batcave, so we know that anyone in the market for a sketchy debt-relief firm has many, many options to avoid calling. But now there are a few fewer questionable companies littering the daytime airwaves because the Federal Trade Commission has halted the operations of four services that allegedly made false claims about being lawyers, debited money from people who did not actually order the services — oh, and failed to get any significant debt relief for the customers that actually signed up.

[More]

5 Warning Signs To Look For When Choosing A Debt Relief Firm

5 Warning Signs To Look For When Choosing A Debt Relief Firm

With many Americans still weighed down by debt, there seem to be an endless number of firms out there offering to help save people from the quicksand. Alas, not all of these people are completely on the up-and-up.

[More]

White House Wants Mortgage Firms To Help Homeowners Avoid Foreclosure

White House Wants Mortgage Firms To Help Homeowners Avoid Foreclosure

An Obama administration plan calls for the 14 largest mortgage companies to contribute to a federal fund that would help distressed homeowners avoid foreclosures.

[More]