Scam Alert: Don’t pay upfront for credit card debt relief
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – In a new scam alert issued by Attorney General Andy Beshear Friday, Kentuckians are being warned of telemarketing calls offering instant credit card debt relief for a fee.
The Attorney General’s office obtained a recording of a call from an agent with “Financial Planning Card Services.” The caller claims to be affiliated with all major banks and can provide credit card debt relief by negotiating a lower interest rate, as low as zero percent.
Beshear said these type of calls often end with a victim providing their personal information and an upfront fee to the scammer who never delivers on the deal to lower the interest rate.
“Charging Kentuckians, then failing to help them lower their debts is no service at all – it is a scam,” said Beshear. “Kentuckians concerned about their credit card interest rates should work directly with the credit card company to determine if they will negotiate your rates.”
The Federal Trade Commission’s Telemarketing Sales Rule prohibits for-profit companies that sell debt relief services over the phone from charging a fee before they actually settle or reduce a consumer’s debt. Kentucky state law also places prohibitions on legitimate debt adjusters.
The Office of the Attorney General refers Kentuckians with high credit card debt and in need of legitimate debt adjuster assistance to the nonprofit National Foundation for Credit Counseling.
Beshear said his office works to stay ahead of scammers by alerting Kentuckians when new and trending scams are reported in Kentucky. Kentuckians can sign up to receive Scam Alerts by texting the words KYOAG Scam to GOV311 (468311), or enroll online at ag.ky.gov/scams.
To report a scam to the Office of the Attorney General, dial 888-432-9257 or file a consumer complaint online.