I Noticed Golden Financial Services is Working With Actify Solutions on Debt Validation

Question:

Dear Steve,

I noticed Golden Financial Services is pushing their “Debt Validation” as a way to save more money compare to debt settlement with various internet marketing. I did more research and found they use a company called Actify Solutions for this debt validation. By reading through the BBB complaints of Actify Solutions, I noticed some pretty serious complaints. They appear to be very close to losing their BBB accreditation since the lowest grade an accredited member can have is a “B” and the complaints just seem to keep rolling in.

Do you believe Actify Solutions is purposely being deceptive to classify their company as a “Legal Document Help” company when it is clear that all of their complaints are related to debt relief? I also find it deceptive that Golden Financial is a Debt Relief company marketing Actify Solutions as a Debt Relief service.

Ella

Answer:

Dear Ella,

Nine days ago I received a similar question and sent an email to Paul Paquin, the head of Golden Financial Services. I said, “I got this as a reader question and wanted to give you a shot at answering it first.”

I have not received a reply from Paul or Golden Financial Services at the time of this answer. If I do get an answer I’ll update this posting.

I’ve been in the debt relief space since 1994. I’ve given up being shocked or surprised by anything.

I’m not sure there is more I can add other than just some commonsense advice.

Debt relief companies are trying to sell a product. There is no requirement that any of those products are the best solution or effective for the consumer. In general, for most companies and commissioned salespeople, the focus seems to be on closing the sale. Sometimes it seems people do more homework when buying a vehicle than they do to purchase debt relief help.

Debt validation alone as a strategy to eliminate debt is not a given nor does it automatically have the power of law behind it as a consumer bankruptcy does. It is a tool that a consumer can attempt to use to gain more clarity about a debt claimed to be owed.

There are good times to attempt to validate a specific account that the consumer does not recognize or is grossly in error. In my opinion, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) offered up some good advice on this subject.

In response to the question about determining if a debt collector is legitimate who calls, the CFPB said, “Tell the caller that you refuse to discuss any debt until you get a written “validation notice.”

This notice must include:

You can consider sending the collector a letter requesting the information by using one of the CFPB’s sample letters. You can also submit a complaint to the CFPB or you can contact your state Attorney General’s office. – Source

I have said over-and-over-and-over that before purchasing any debt relief services, people should do their own research to make sure they are comfortable with the vendor they are hiring. As a sample of the type of research that can be performed I publish these guides online.

  1. The Ultimate Consumer Guide to Checking Out a Debt Relief Company Before You Sign On the Line
  2. 10 Must Do Steps to Find the Best Credit Counseling or Debt Settlement Company for You
  3. How to Check Out a Business or Company to Avoid Getting Scammed or Ripped Off

If you or anyone else has questions like you did, I invite them to be directly ask the companies they are thinking of working with to make sure the answers are satisfactory before they move ahead.

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