When in serious debt, consumers are faced with a barrage of choices: find a way to reduce, settle or gradually pay off the debt, or just simply file for bankruptcy? "With bankruptcy being an option of last resort, other solutions sometimes appear more attractive," says Texas Attorney Reed Allmand. "Little do people realize, with these other solutions, there's always potential danger and heartbreak looming right around the corner."
Case in point: Allmand tells of a man named Cliff Mayer who contacted his office on June 20, 2009, distraught and emotionally drained. Was he in debt? Yes. He had quite a bit of it. However, at that moment, his mounting debt was incidental to his seemingly insurmountable problem: He had paid a total of $30,000 to Debt Relief USA, and, to his shock, he was informed that they had just filed for bankruptcy.
His chances to recover all or part of his money? Virtually nil.
Allmand notes, "It's sad and truly heartbreaking when something like this happens. Mr. Mayer made his payments to Debt Relief USA religiously and on time. They assured him things were proceeding wonderfully. And then $30,000 later, he's completely devastated and wishing he would have first consulted with a bankruptcy attorney about his situation. This was the ultimate scam. What's scary is, this type of thing happens much more often than people realize."
In a stroke of misfortune, prior to contacting Debt Relief USA, Mr. Mayer had hired a credit counseling company to also help him resolve his debt situation. The result, after thousands of dollars spent, he was utterly disappointed and found their services of no benefit.