SEATTLE (Legal Newsline) — Washington State Attorney General
Bob Ferguson has announced his office has brought a lawsuit against Student
Aid Center Inc. and its owners, Ramiro Fernandez-Moris and Damien Alvarez,
accusing them of charging students illegal fees for debt adjustment services
and consolidating student loans.
From 2013 to 2015, the company allegedly advertised debt
relief services for student loans, saying it could offer an “Obama student loan forgiveness program” and attempting to associate itself with the federal
government. A total of $500,000 in fees was paid by more than 800 Washington
consumers for these “services.” The state says the defendants charged
more than the legal maximum $25 in initial fees for debt adjustment.
“In 2015, Washington students graduated with an average of
nearly $25,000 in debt,” Ferguson said. “I will not tolerate the financial
abuse of already overburdened Washington students.”
Ferguson’s office charges the defendants violated the
state’s Consumer Protection Act, Debt Adjustors Act and Credit Services
Organizations Act. The attorney general seeks a court finding that would
invalidate Student Aid Center’s contracts, order the defendants to provide
refunds and order them to end the alleged deceptive practices.