CFPB Files Suit Against Illinois-based Debt Relief Company

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On November 20, 2020, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced that it had filed a complaint against an Illinois-based debt settlement company and the company’s owners for alleged violations of Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR), 16 C.F.R. § 310.4, and the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA), 12 U.S.C. § 5536. The company purportedly offered consumers student loan debt relief and credit repair services, but was involuntarily dissolved in September of 2020. In the complaint, filed in federal court in the Northern District of Illinois, the CFPB alleges that from 2011 through April of 2019 the company improperly requested and received payments from consumers for debt relief or credit repair services prior to achieving any results and before it was legally permitted to do so under the TSR. The CFPB also alleges the company misrepresented material aspects of its student loan debt relief services by falsely stating its services could reduce or eliminate debt and improve credit scores.

The complaint seeks injunctive relief, as well as restitution, disgorgement, and civil money penalties.