FTC Halts Deceptive Student Debt Relief Scheme that Bilked Consumers out of Millions

By on March 4, 2019

Operators charged illegal upfront fees and falsely promised to reduce or eliminate consumers’ student loan debt

The Federal Trade Commission alleged that a California-based student debt relief scheme bilked consumers out of millions of dollars using false promises that they could reduce their monthly payments, or eliminate or reduce their student loan debt.

A  at the request of the FTC, which seeks to end the deceptive practices.

Operators of the scheme, including recidivist scammer Tuan Duong, falsely promoted a 96 percent success rate in reducing consumers’ student loan payments, according to the . In fact, the consumers who purchased these services often did not receive any debt relief and lost hundreds of dollars.

The complaint also alleges that the defendants charged consumers illegal upfront fees of $499 or more for these purported debt relief services.

“People struggling to repay their student loan debt are a favorite target for fraudsters,” said Andrew Smith, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “If anyone promises quick student loan forgiveness or asks you to pay in advance for help with your student debt, tell the FTC, because that’s a scam.”

In as part of , a joint federal-state enforcement initiative against six fraudulent mortgage relief schemes. In 2016, . Under the final order entered by the Court, Duong was banned from advertising, marketing, or promoting debt relief services or misrepresenting any fact material to consumers relating to any product or service. The order also required Duong to pay more than $1.7 million in restitution, which Duong failed to pay.

The defendants in this case are three corporations: Impetus Enterprise, Inc. (also doing business as Aiding Student Relief, Aiding Students & Teachers, Aidnest, Avec Staffing, and National Education Student and Teacher); Fig Tree & Co., LLC (also doing business as Aiding Student Relief, Aiding Students & Teachers, and Aiding Student & Teacher) and relief defendant, Noel Solutions, LLC; and three individual defendants; Tuan Duong (also known as Thomas Duong and Thomas Dinh), Brenda Avitia-Pena, and Brian Colombana.

READ  New research report on student loan repayment and broader household borrowing

The Commission vote approving the Complaint was 5-0. The U.S. District Court for the Central District of California entered a temporary restraining order in the case on November 13, 2018.

This article by the was distributed by the .

The post appeared first on .

Last step, fill out the information below or call us for Priority Assistance.

What problems are you having with your report?

Your first name is required. Your first name is required to be at least 2 characters. Your first name cannot be longer than 50 characters.
Your last name is required. Your last name is required to be at least 2 characters. Your last name cannot be longer than 50 characters.
Your email is required.
Your phone is required. Your 10 digit phone number is required.
Your state is required.
Your age is required. Your age must be greater than 18. Your age must be less than 100.

By clicking on the "Contact Me" button above, you consent, acknowledge, and agree to the following: Our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and to receive electronic communications. We take your privacy seriously. That you are providing express "written" consent for Debt.com or appropriate service provider(s) to call you (including through automated means; e.g. autodialing, text and pre-recorded messaging) via telephone, mobile device (including SMS and MMS - charges may apply), even if your telephone number is currently listed on any internal, corporate, state or federal Do-Not-Call list. Consent is not required as a condition to utilize Debt.com services and you are under no obligation to purchase anything.

By clicking on the “Contact me” button above, you consent, acknowledge, and agree to the following: (1)That you are providing express “written” consent for Lexington Law Firm, Debt.com or appropriate service provider(s) to call you (including through automated means; e.g. autodialing, text and pre-recorded messaging) via telephone, mobile device (including SMS and MMS – charges may apply), or dialed manually, at my residential or cellular number, even if your telephone number is currently listed on any internal, corporate, state or federal Do-Not-Call list; and (2)Lexington Law’s and and Debt.com’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Consent is not required as a condition to utilize Lexington Law or Debt.com services and you are under no obligation to purchase anything.

About Research Department

Here is where you will find important stories located from around the web which can impact you and your financial life.
%d bloggers like this: