Freedom Debt Relief claims to help people who have a lot of debt in handling creditors and negotiating a settlement with them. However, not many consumers have spoken well about them and the way they work. Although most of the customers have not offered good reviews about them, there are also a few who think of them as a dependable company.
Mixed Consumer Reaction about Freedom Debt Relief
Freedom Debt Relief has had mixed reactions from people. On one hand there are customers who have been extremely unhappy with them and on the other hand there are again customers who have had good experience and find them reliable.
- Some customers have felt that the company has been true to their words.
- They immediately start contacting debtors/creditors in order to negotiate a settlement.
- They have been honest and also helped clients get in touch with an attorney who could help them get out of debt.
- They have helped customers settle debts for good.
- They settle for far more an amount than what they commit to customers.
- Even after receiving a ‘cease and desist’ letter they continued with their calls.
- They tend to lose information provided by their customers.
- Customers have been forced to file bankruptcy since working with them has cost them a lot of money.
- They are known to spoil credit scores of individuals.
General information on Freedom Debt Relief
Freedom Debt Relief is a debt settlement company founded in 2002 aiming to help individuals improve their financial condition. They assist them in getting out of debt through their financial programs. They are said to negotiate with the creditors/lenders and settle accounts for as less as possible and also educate consumers on debt management.
I have been corresponding with them (freedomdebtrelief) and talking with a guy of Freedom Debt Relief by phone and have not yet entered into any agreement but today I decided to do some homework and found that their CA Corp. status is «suspended» and that is a HUGE red flag for me. I’m still waiting for more info on that but I also checked the BBB and there have been 67 complaints so far against Freedom Debt Relief scam that I can find. and that’s through a regional BBB site. Who knows if there are more reviews elsewhere. It all sounded very good, and on the «up and up» but what do I do now? I have about $20,000 in debt and they agreed to settle my debt for about $11,000 total out of pocket. They charge but I’m still better off with their numbers. Problem is, I’m very afraid of doing business with anyone in the debt settlement industry having such complaints. I need help very soon though! So far I’m not late on any of my bills but it’s not far off. Please suggest me on Freedom Debt Relief reviews. [samebox:0d75c39e1c=»Vikas»]Response from Freedom Debt Relief Managing Partner –
Debi – tell Freedom Debt Relief to take a walk. With that many complaint reviews against them (unresolved ones, at that!), they are not worth your time nor your money.
Let me clarify. My total debt is about $20k and their settlement program, INCLUDING their fees, is only about $11k. That means, in reality, since their fees are 15%, which is about $3k. I’m only paying back about $8k of my debt back. I’ve done alot of research and even spoke to the founder of their company and it all seems on the up and up. I’m just scared I guess. I’m so untrusting of anyone, including my creditors! I KNOW my creditors could really care less if I’m having trouble as long as they get paid the monthly minimum. If not Freedom Debt Relief company can someone recommend a good debt settlement company they have worked with.
Oh, and I addressed the BBB complaints with their founder and he said he wishes they had none but Freedom Debt Relief always resolve their complaints. I did look at the BBB and I believe they are all resolved. He invited me to contact the CA Attorney General’s office as he knows I will not find any negative information there. Their founders are Stanford graduates. blah blah blah. Help! I’m scared! It’s either this or bankruptcy!
I can tell you for sure that Freedom Debt Relief will not succeed in 40% settlement which is what they are telling you without messing up your credit score. Your accounts will have to be charged off before you get that kind of settlement even with one of these companies trying to negotiate. As your accounts get charged off the amount you owe escalates. The credit companies start tagging you with late fees, over limit fees, higher interest and other fees to balloon your balance. In 6 months that 20,000 could easily grow 35% to around 27,000. They may still be able to get a 40% settlement on the beginning balance but keep in mind that your credit will be a wreck afterward. As you settle your score will improve but the settled amounts leave gray marks on your report. Sometimes you can dispute these and the creditor will not verify those marks so they disappear. Also keep in mind that your creditors will 1099 you afterward too which means you have to pay your tax bracket on the difference between the ballooned amount and the amount you paid.
I have not personally worked with any debt settlement company so I can not recommend any but one thing I would do is try to not pay them a large amount up front without anything being settled. Maybe you could get the company to agree to take payment as the settle items for you. For example if the settle a 5,000 account for 2,000 then you would send them a check for 2000 made out to the creditor and another check for $750 made out to them which is their 15% fee. I do not think they could settle any of them though if you continue to make your minimum payments. I would also recommend that you try the counseling on this site prior to going with any settlement program.
In reality 20k in debt is actually pretty low. I certainly would not file bankruptcy over it. I would try to cut corners, sell stuff and take extra work to pay it down which is what I did for my own debt. Do not let the creditors make you think it is an urgent matter either. Take care of your necessities first. If you end up delinquent on your accounts so be it.