Article that offers a rebuttal to the assertion that all consulting firms who claim that they can assist with SBA debt settlement are scammers. Explains how to tell whether a consultant is legitimate or unsavory.
I got a call today from someone who seemed very interested in having my firm negotiate a settlement for their SBA loan. About halfway through the conversation, the prospective client said to me “well, this all sounds great, but I have to be honest. I talked with my attorney about your services, and he said it’s a scam”.
Well, that’s pretty annoying.
I did my best to explain that the SBA does have a settlement process, and even sent the prospective client a copy of the SBA OIC form. I went on to suggest that perhaps his attorney was not familiar with the SBA process, so he would not be in a position to know what’s possible when it comes to debt settlement.
That said, I can’t argue that there are some very shady characters out there who are posing as SBA Default Experts. In an effort to help you determine who is legit, and who is not, here are some helpful tips and questions to ask:
- Is the majority of their fee payable before you know whether the settlement was successful?
- Does the strategy that is being pitched to you sound a little off? I have a client who came to me after their original consultant advised them to sell their business to a friend so they’d qualify for a settlement, then to buy the business back once the settlement was complete. I had another client who told me that they were told by another consulting company that they should just form a new corporation and keep running the business.
- Use the power of the internet. By googling the name of the company and the people behind it, you can learn a lot, especially if you put the words “fraud” or “scam” after the names.
- Are claims being made that seem too good to be true? Statements like “We guaranty we can settle your debt”, and “We have a 100% success rate” should set off red flags.
- Are you being pressured to sign up by scare tactics? A consultant who gives you the hard sell may be trying to force you into handing over cash before you have time to think it over.
It’s a shame that there are people out there who don’t have your best interest at heart, but then again, such traits are not limited to SBA consultants. In every walk of life there are crooked players, including doctors, lawyers, teachers, or police. It’s just too bad that people who are in such financial troubles have to worry about being ripped off when they can least afford it.