18 Questions to Ask a Debt Negotiation/Settlement Company
Are they members of The American Fair Credit Council (AFCC)& The Association of Settlement Companies (TASC)?
America Debt Resolutions is a charter member of TASC and member of the AFCC for 5 years Verify your company is listed and members
Are they ACCREDITED members of TASC & AFCC?
America Debt Resolutions is a
4th YEAR ACCREDITEDmember of TASC (The Association of Settlement Companies) & American Fair Credit Council ( AFCC) Only 14 Accredited Members in the Country Verify they are ACCREDITED MEMBERS
Are they bonded?
America Debt Resolutions is $100,000 Surety Bonded www.cnasurety.com If your alternate company is not bonded, you are taking a risk of the company losing money and/or going out of business due to employee or unethical standards.
Are they certified and members of the International Association for Professional Debt Arbitrators (IAPDA)?
America Debt Resolutions is IAPDA Silver Level Certified with certified Associates. http://www.iapda.com. You want your company to use certified arbitrators; a certified arbitrator means they have been through all of the continuing education classes, passed all of the exams and are certified by the International Association of Arbitrators (IAPDA). At America Debt Resolutions 100% of the negotiators that work on your accounts are certified by the IAPDA.
How many complaints do they have with the Better Business Bureau? What is their rating on the BBB website?
America Debt Resolutions has an A- & NR rating on the BBB. ADR continues to have Zero unresolved complaints with only 4 complaints received in over 5 years. Verity they are listed with BBB www.bbb.org Verify Complaints are resolved
How much money do you save or accrue in the first 3-4 months for settlements or are all funds applied to service fees?
America Debt Resolutions does not charge any fees for negotiations prior to settlement. All funds stay in savings to help you get our debt until our work is in writing and a first payment is made to your creditors. You want your company to allow you to accrue savings vs. paying service all fees upfront, this will help you settle your accounts sooner and get better results.
What do they do to try to help reduce/minimize Creditor Harassment from calls and letters?
If you are getting too many annoying and harassing phone calls from your debt collectors, then they are VIOLATING your FDCPA Rights and you are entitled to $1,000 in damages. Our FDCPA program is a membership that allows consumers to purchase a prepaid legal protection plan that stops and protects you and your family from Creditor Harassment.
Do they monitor your creditor calls and correspondence? Or will you have to be calling and sending them everything yourself?
America Debt Resolutions provides the option of redirecting within 72 hours. This option provides a local creditor phone number and address to redirect correspondence and help monitor your debt. You want your company to help minimize calls and mail. Ask if you will have to be the middle man do you have to take the time to forward all correspondence and calls?
What is their client support like? Do you have a dedicated team assigned to you throughout the program? Are you in the hands of a call center? Is the customer support outsourced?
With America Debt Resolutions, you will have a dedicated client relations manager/coach to work with you every month. We proactively reach out to you every 4-6 weeks to give you an update on your enrolled accounts. WE DO NOT outsource any of your information or support.
Do you work with a National Law Firm who will represent you if a creditor pursues you legally?
America Debt Resolutions will not charge you any upfront fees but WILL have the option for a local attorney retained in your state with our Legal Plan. IF needed they can provide full responses, client legal protection, filing answers, demands on your accounts and court representation until the case is closed. It may be inevitable in certain situations to file for bankruptcy.
Are they Dunn and Brad Street Listed, D&B listed?
America Debt Resolutions is listed with the D&B in excellent standings.
How long have they been in business?
America Debt Resolutions is 5 year old company with over 20 years experience in settlement and finance.
Do they have a GAAP audit? How do you know they will be in business in the future?
America Debt Resolutions has completed their GAAP Audit. Generally Accepted Accounting Principals assure clients' companies are stable for future operations. GAAP is the common set of accounting principles, standards, and procedures that companies use to compile their financial statements, GAAP is a combination of authoritative standards (set by policy boards) and simply the commonly accepted way of recording and reporting accounting information.
Do they have proof of settlements?
At America Debt Resolutions, we have actual real-life settlement letters. Original testimonials are available and can also be found here
Do they have a written service fee guarantee in the paperwork?
America Debt Resolutions lists a service fee guarantee with all client agreements. Most companies talk about a guarantee, but make sure it is clearly included in the paperwork. Many companies do not have written guarantees.
Do they provide negotiation in-house vs. outsourcing your personal information at the “Client Services Department” and the “Negotiations Department”?
Ensure the company has in-house certified negotiators who do not send out your file to a third party. Request they send you proof. Typically front-end companies, attorneys who have gotten into the settlement business to make fast money or any company for that matter, are quick to enroll you to get their hands on the service fee and then send your account off to a third party to take care of you. Most of the time these third party companies are in a different state than the original representative you spoke with. They will be making promises for things totally out of their control. Your creditors do not like the idea of you using an expensive attorney or third parties. "Why are you paying an attorney and not paying us?" Your creditors will have a hard time believing that you are really in "financial hardship".
Who controls your savings while in the program?
America Debt Resolutions will help you set up a special purpose account, FDIC insured under your name. You have peace of mind in knowing your money is under your control at all times. I would caution you to never allow another company to hold your funds for several reasons. If they hold your money then you have no access to it. If you choose to cancel and haven't paid their full fee they can keep your savings. Secondly, if they hold your money the program may show up on your credit report as a "third party intervention", which looks as bad as a bankruptcy to any lender.
What guarantee do you have after completing your program?
America Debt Resolutions will continue to provide dedicated client support regarding your debt after you complete your program. If you have a question, need copies of paperwork, a referral or coaching on your next financial step, we will be there.