Consumers should know that in September 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed suit against World Law Group and its leaders for charging consumers illegal and excessive fees upfront and promising debt relief it rarely provided, according to the Bureau. A U.S. District Court issued a preliminary injunction freezing the defendants’ assets and prohibiting the group from doing business until the end of the case. The complaint alleges that World Law Group collected about $67 million from over 21,000 consumers.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau alleges that World Law Group committed deceptive, unfair or abusive acts and practices in violation of the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, explains the Bureau. World Law Group allegedly collected illegal upfront fees from approximately 99 percent of the consumers who participated in the company's program. The fees included an initial fee of $199, attorney service fees of $84.95 monthly and 10 to 15 percent of the consumers' debts for bundled legal service fees. Although World Law promised consumers that local attorneys would negotiate lower debt payments on their behalf, the company collected millions of consumer dollars but did not keep its promises.
The court found that the Bureau is likely to prevail at trial and that it served the public interest to issue an order granting a preliminary injunction against World Law Group, notes the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.