On October 5, 2015, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it reached a settlement with defendants who allegedly operated a debt scamming business by promising consumers debt relief services that they did not deliver. Defendants allegedly disseminated false and misleading information regarding their services through telemarketing, internet ads, and other media. After accepting customers’ payments and fees, defendants purportedly did not deliver the promised results and often did not provide any services at all. According to the May 2014 Complaint, these actions allegedly violated the FTC Act, the Telemarketing Sales Rule, and the Credit Repair Organizations Act. In the proposed settlement orders, defendants are prohibited from (1) offering any debt relief services; (2) making unsubstantiated claims; (3) engaging in telemarketing practices that mislead; (4) misrepresenting financial products and services; and (5) improperly using customer information. To settle the FTC’s claims, the defendants agreed to a monetary judgment of $7.9 million. Defendants also agreed to keep records and submit compliance reports to the FTC for 20 years after the Order is entered.
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