DEBT SETTLERS ARE BAD FOR YOU. DEBT MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS ARE DEBT SETTLEMENT IN DISGUISE.
All references to code sections are courtesy of the Legislative Information System of Virginia, and are provided by leg1.state.va.us.
Debt Management and Debt Settlement is regulated by the Virginia Bureau of Financial Institutions.
Recently, the Oregon Attorney General cracked down on Credit Solutions of America, a debt settler based in Texas. You can read the story here.
In that story, you will find that CSA has been scamming Oregon consumers for some time. They charge substantial upfront fees and encourage people to default on credit cards so they can afford the upfront fees.
This is also illegal in Virginia, however, the Virginia Attorney General has not yet come down on CSA.
Remember that with debt settlement, there is NO GUARANTEE that it will work. KCLS does not settle debts, though we have been known to settle lawsuits.
Debt settlers promise that they can settled your debts. There is no way to promise that truthfully. No one can promise that a debt will be settled with a creditor, collector, or lawfirm. There are only 2 ways to not pay for sure 1- Bankruptcy, and 2- win the collection lawsuit.
You can win a collections lawsuit because you do not owe the debt- ie: not yours, or billing errors.
You can win a collection lawsuit for technical reasons- ie: statute of limitations, hearsay, or other evidence problems.
You can also lose a collections lawsuit, even with a debt that is beyond the statute of limitations, with testimony that is based on hearsay, filled with billing errors, where the judge does not follow the law, or the rules of procedure or the rules of evidence. Even good lawyers can lose in these circumstances.
The most important thing to know is that if you do not try to defend, you cannot win. You must show up. Most debt settlers try to settle the debt from afar. They try to settle, while the collector proceeds to obtain judgment.
There are also some creditors and debt collectors that will not negotiate, and worse yet, when they understand that you have hired a debt settler, will sue, almost immediately, for the simple reason that they believe that the first one to sue will be one of the few to collect anything. The truth is that this is a self-fulfilling prophesy.
In summary, beware of debt settlers, it is very hard for them to comply with all of the provisions of the Virginia Credit Counseling Act (VCCA), Virginia Code Sections 6.1-363.2 through 6.1-363.26. Violations of the VCCA can be enforced by consumers who have been duped, pursuant to the Virginia Consumer Protection Act (VCPA), as VCCA specifies at Section 6.1-363.26 that any violation of VCCA is a violation of Section 59.1-200 of the VCPA.
If you have been impacted by anything we mentioned here, you can make an appointment to see us.
NO FEE IN YOUR VCCA/VCPA CASE UNLESS WE RECOVER!!
KCLS LIMITS THE GEOGRAPHY IN WHICH WE TAKE CASES.
YOU MUST BE A VIRGINIA RESIDENT.
If you are not a Virginia Resident, click here to find a lawyer near you.
OUR LEGAL FEES:
The rights afforded to you, as a consumer, under the Virginia Credit Counseling Act and the Virginia Consumer Protection Act means that a corporation or party who has violated your rights may ultimately be made to pay for statutory damages, actual damages, and your legal fees. Therefore, if we agree to represent you in any case, you won’t pay any attorney’s fees unless we are successful and we recover on your behalf. We are here to serve and have assisted many consumers TO enforce their legal rights. Let us try and see if we can help you too. That means you pay no fee in your case unless we recover.
Contact us by e-mail or by telephone or fax or US Mail.
You can call us: 804.673.4358
You can fax us: 804.673.4350
You can contact us by US MAIL:
Krumbein Consumer Legal Services, Inc.
1650 Willow Lawn Drive
Richmond, VA 23230