Debt Management Firm Agrees To Refund $55,000 In Improper Fees


(BALTIMORE, 4/9/10) -- Sarah Bloom Raskin, Commissioner of Financial Regulation for the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, announced that American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) had agreed to refund approximately $55,000 in fees that were improperly charged to 807 Maryland consumers who signed up for the company's debt management services.

"We are committed to ensuring that all Marylanders, particularly those in financial distress, receive the consumer protections to which they are entitled by law," said Mark Kaufman, Deputy Commissioner of Financial Regulation.

The refunds relate to an examination of ACCC, a licensed debt management company located in Newton, Mass., by the Office of the Commissioner that revealed violations of the Maryland Debt Management Services Act. The refunds principally relate to add-on fees for a financial education program that ranged from $39 to $114 and a $2 fee per issue for monthly educational newsletters. Under Maryland law, any such services must be provided under the company's initial consultation fee.

Consumers may obtain information about the Maryland Debt Management Services Act, learn about their rights when using debt management companies, and check whether a company is licensed to offer its services in Maryland at our website.