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CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 10215
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney representing individuals and businesses.
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3 months ago I made the wrong decision of how to handle my

Customer Question

3 months ago I made the wrong decision of how to handle my credit card debt problem by enrolling into a "debt resolution program" and was told that negotiators could reduce my debt by negotiating with the credit card companies (within a short period of time, a few months), on the balances of my 3 of my cards, and it can then be consolidated into one monthly payment, which I can pay off in three years. I had a total of close to $20,000 of debt.
I was very emotionally stressed at the time I enrolled, and was not thinking clearly. I am now three months into the program and am finally realizing in horror that I have been mislead..and made a terrible mistake..misunderstood all the complexities of this agreement...and need they now tell me it may take 7 months before they can reach a settlement,.,.,and that there is a remote possibility I could be sued also, which they did not tell me initially. Anyway...I do not want to ruin my credit as a result of this which seem what is going to happen now. I want to get out of this program... I need advise..I suspect something fishy is going on.
Michael Cherry(###) ###-####***@******.***
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 5 months ago.
Dear Customer,You are probably right that "something fishy" is going on - unfortunately a lot of these debt consolidation companies are engaged in very bad practices and they offer terrible financial services to their customers (You are more fortunate than most in identifying these risks so quickly).See: get out of this contract, usually it is as easy as telling them you are planning on reporting them to your state attorney general's office (and then do so). To make a report to your State Attorney General, simply do a search for "[YOUR STATE] Attorney General Consumer Complaint" and you can make an online report - the AG's office can investigate the business and potentially take administrative and/or criminal enforcement action.If they refuse to work with you after you threaten to file a complaint (you can do so both over the phone and in writing). You can then file a small claims action against them for breach of contract and fraud. The Court can void the contract and potentially award money damages against them (don't rely too much on the money damages part, but you should at least be able to get out of the contract).The link I provided above to the FTC gives information both about debt consolidation, but also about how to deal with debt and insolvency - so it gives you good resources to manage your debt outside of these "debt consolidation" scams and can help get you back to a better financial picture.

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