Burlington Financial Group took “no meaningful action” despite a customer having paid the purported “debt validation business” more than $7,500 over two years to protect him from collectors and litigation, a class action claims.
Filed in South Carolina, the six-page lawsuit claims the plaintiff was unaware prior to signing up for Burlington Financial Group’s services that the company was the subject of “numerous consumer complaints” and had a year prior entered into a consent judgment that required it to cease its business activities—and stop operating entirely in the District of Columbia—due to “wrongful conduct.”
According to the complaint, Burlington Financial Group represents itself to be a “debt validation business” that offers a custom design documents process and “uses” certain federal laws to require debt collectors and creditors to verify information, all under the guise of helping consumers eliminate or be released from debts. Per the suit, the defendant, who has also told consumers it can help improve their credit, charges for its services monthly payments and fees that can sometimes eclipse $10,000.
Burlington Financial Group also tells consumers that if they’re sued while or after using the company’s “validation process,” it will refund any fees that were paid, the suit says. Further, the defendant has represented that it is in partnership with a company called Veritas Legal Plan, Inc., and claims consumers will be “fully protected by us and Veritas” throughout their entire debt validation program, according to the case.
Per the lawsuit, Burlington Financial Group solicits consumers in South Carolina through “enrollment specialists” who are, in truth, commission-based salespeople with no authorization to provide legal advice.
The plaintiff says he was enrolled in the defendant’s debt verification plan around May 2018. Thereafter, Burlington Financial Group withdrew money each month to “consolidate” the plaintiff’s apparent debts, provide validation services, “protect” the man from collectors or litigation and prevent negative information from appearing on the plaintiff’s credit, the lawsuit says.
Despite paying Burlington Financial Group “in excess” of $7,500 over two years, the company “took no meaningful action” to protect the plaintiff, who, as a result, was “dunned mercilessly and continually by creditors and collectors” as his credit score sustained damage, the suit claims.
Unbeknownst to the plaintiff, Burlington Financial Group was the subject of “numerous consumer complaints,” and had a year prior to the man’s enrollment entered into a consent judgment that required the company to cease its activities and stop doing business in the District of Columbia, the case goes on. The District of Columbia ordered the defendant to refund all sums of money paid by D.C. residents due to violations of the District of Columbia Protection Procedures Act and the District’s Consumer Credit Service Organizations Act, the lawsuit says.
“As a direct and proximate result of BFG’s near-identical conduct in South Carolina, and violation of South Carolina’s similar Act, Plaintiff has been damaged,” the suit claims.
The lawsuit looks to represent all persons in South Carolina who have paid sums of money to Burlington Financial Group at any time.
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