Ohio AG suing debt settler

Bryan Cohen Mar. 13, 2012, 2:00pm


COLUMBUS, Ohio (Legal Newsline) - Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced a lawsuit on Monday against Jeremy Nelson and his two companies for taking consumer payments but allegedly failing to deliver on promises to settle debt.

Jeremy Nelson, who is based out of Trabuco Canyon, Calif., is the president of Jackson Hunter Morris & Knight, a Nevada Corporation, and Nelson Gamble & Associates, a Colorado corporation. Nelson's businesses advertised that they could help consumers settle their debts, taking payments and failing to settle the debts, DeWine says. Nelson's businesses were not registered with the Ohio Secretary of State to do business in Ohio.

"We will take action to protect Ohioans from unfair business practices regardless of where the business is located," DeWine said. "This individual operated businesses that promised to help settle consumers' debts, told them to stop communicating with their creditors, and took upfront payment before providing any services. Ultimately he and his businesses failed to fulfill their promises and violated Ohio law."

Nelson's advertisements allegedly gave consumers the impression that they were getting professional services connected with legal counsel. Representatives who consumers spoke with over the phone allegedly said that the business would negotiate with consumers' creditors so that consumers could settle their debts by paying a fraction of what they owed. The services promised were allegedly never rendered.

DeWine's lawsuit alleges that Jeremy Nelson and his businesses violated Ohio's Debt Adjuster Act and Consumers Sales Practices Act. Specific allegations include misrepresentation, failure to deliver and charging higher fees than allowed by Ohio law. DeWine's lawsuit seeks civil penalties, customer restitution and injunctive relief.

"With the average American carrying thousands of dollars in credit card debt, debt settlement services can seem very appealing," DeWine said. "But far too many of these businesses fail to deliver on their promises and leave consumers in a worse financial situation."

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