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corporate turnaround / Fraud, Overcharging, Deceptive Practices

2 United States Review updated:

I signed up with Corporate Turnaround, February 2009, to help me with my creditors and collections. I researched as much as I could find, but when they showed up on the SBA/SCORE website as a Partner, I figured they were probably a good company.

At that time, I submitted 11 creditors, some were credit cards, and some were subcontractors we owed money to from work. Of the 11 submitted, only two wanted to deal with their program. The others without my choosing, decided to explore other ways to collect their funds--all through attorneys.

I told Corporate Turnaround representatives that these 9 creditors did not want to have anything to do with their debt resolution program. I found out later the reason was because they were being pressured into settling for a much lesser amount than what was owed. This was happening with all creditors I submitted to them.

When I became aware of this typical negotiating with all the creditors a few weeks ago, I pulled our account, and told them to stop contacting creditors. Apparently up until I pulled the account they were still trying to get the 9 who did not want to participate, to work with their program. Even after I told the representative these were not viable creditors back in March and April. One of the creditors wrote Corporate Turnaround and stated they would not participate.

So when I closed the account, I sent a statement to the representative and told him I wanted a complete accounting. His response was that they had been sent monthly. I only received one monthly statement, even though I had repeatedly asked. It even took multiple requests to get the close out statement.

I finally received a complete accounting on August 18, 2009. I was surprised to find that I had sent them a little over $47, 000 to pay my creditors, and only a little more than $12, 000 had actually been paid. The remainder of the money was pocketed by Corporate Turnaround in the form of "fees", most of which was based on the time those 9 creditors, who did not want to participate in their program, were listed--start date to account closing.

It stated in my contract with Corporate Turnaround that if I was the one to pull the creditors, Corporate Turnaround would take the fee. I was not the one to pull those 9 creditors. They just simply did not want to settle for less than what was owed.

It is my belief that they owe me most of the money they kept for themselves, and I want it back. I was overcharged, then they tried to get me to sign a release absolving them of all liability and responsibiltiy. I refused.

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  • Mo
      13th of Jan, 2011
    -1 Votes

    Can I ask how you were able to break the contract without paying any additional fees? The same things is happening to me. I have one judgement and 2 pending judgements against me because my creditors do not want to settle for less. I have given CT 85, 000 to date (one year's time)! I only pay out $3888.00 for one company that settled and all the other money has gone to them! HELP! Any information would be helpful.

  • Cl
      15th of Feb, 2012
    -1 Votes

    I think this practice of theirs is really out of hand. Is there any recourse possible for those of us who've been had by this monster of a company? This is really not legal. They prey on small businesses who are at risk and make a fortune out of collecting so called fees, without even paying off creditors as they claimed. how can we get our money back?

  • La
      7th of Apr, 2012
    0 Votes

    I am an attorney who is currently working with a client to recover funds from Corporate Turnaround, and we are also exploring a class action. We will likely be opening litigation on behalf of our client soon. Anyone who is interested in filing your own action, or in discussing this mater confidentially, please feel free to call my office.

    Law Offices of Eric Ridley
    (805) 244-5291

  • La
      7th of Apr, 2012
    0 Votes

    Sorry, I forgot to include the rest of my contact information. I help consumers fight debt negotiation / settlement companies

    Law Offices of Eric Ridley
    567 W. Channel Islands Blvd. #210
    Port Hueneme, CA 93041
    (805) 244-5291

  • Fa
      31st of May, 2012
    +2 Votes

    I signed on with Corporate Turnaround approx. 2 1/2 years ago. I investigated them completely, found two complaints at the time, and found that they settled the complaints to the satisfaction of both complainants. So, I gave them power of attorney with regard to all matters concerning the $220, 000 credit card debt that my business had amassed on 19 credit cards. They asked how much I could afford to pay them each month and we negotiated a contract. It was perfectly clear that they collected fees in two ways:
    1)Minor fees($10/mo.or 2%) were charged on each card balance that they could negotiate to be paid at a date later than the original due date.
    2)Once they negotiated a settlement and I paid it in full, they took 35% of the amount that they saved me. So, if my debt with Visa was $20, 000 and they settled it with Visa's attorneys for $12, 000 to be paid monthly over the next twelve months, when all of the payments were made, they earned 35% of the $8000 that they saved me, or $2800. Once I turned over the payment of all of the credit cards to CT, all interest and late charges stopped while they did the negotiating.
    So, it was made perfectly clear to me that they earned their fees based only on HOW MUCH MONEY THEY SAVED ME ON EACH CREDIT CARD BALANCE. This is a very easy concept to understand. No tricks, no gimmicks, no scams. Immediately after I signed on with them, the advocate that I was assigned to told me which Banks would be the easiest to negotiate with, based on his experience. It took less than a week before one of the largest balances was settled for 50% of the original balance, and it was put on our schedule to be paid over 12 months. I began receiving letters from the in-house attorneys that all of the credit card banks have on their payrolls, and I simply forwarded them to my advocate, who then dealt with them directly. He even had working relationships with more than several of the attorneys that represent the banks who issue the credit cards.
    In addition, every account like mine had access to their account on line at CT's website. You could find out absolutely everything that you wanted about your account, 24 hrs a day. How much you'd paid in, how much was paid out, which creditors had been settled with, which ones were in negotiations...EVERYTHING! The claims
    The entire emphasis during their sales pitch to me was that I would be completely out of the loop once they took over. So, once they had informed all of my creditors that CT would be making all of my payments from that point forward, the creditor's phone calls eventually stopped or I just didn't answer them. If they were slick and got me directly on one of my phones, I cut off all discussion and pointed them in the direction of my advocate at CT. Brentwood, Ca, Montana momma two, and ClareFD had to be ###s to not understand the process. As for the ambulance-chaser attempting to put together a class action suit, he's the reason people hate lawyers. First of all, all of CT's clients incurred debt. It was their responsibility to pay it back. When it got to be too much for them to manage, they looked to the best company to do the job. They did their homework(one would think), and signed on the dotted line. Why don't they take responsibility for their actions? Then, out from under some rock crawls the lawyer(professional liar) who tells them that it wasn't their fault, when it clearly was. Lawyers who engage in frivolous contingency suits like this one should be fined when they are deemed to be unfounded.
    Corporate Turnaround is the real deal. They lay everything out for you at the beginning, tell you exactly what to expect, and make an estimate as to how long it should take to get you debt free. They gave me legal advice along the way, and when I had to hire a lawyer to answer to two lawsuits that arose from my indebtedness, they worked directly with my lawyer to delay any proceedings so that CT would have time to negotiate with both of the plaintiffs, who were happy to settle rather than go to court. In the end, my $220, 000 debt was completely settled for approx. $140, 000, including all of CT's fees in two years. I'm not proud of paying off less debt than I incurred, but I'm ecstatic to be debt-free. My credit score plummeted, just like they said it would, but they've showed me how to build that back up...slowly. It must be working, because my wife and I just bought a used car and got a loan through the dealership with Capital One credit at 5.9%.

  • Ar
      14th of Nov, 2012
    0 Votes

    I am actually going through similar issues with Corporate Turnaround. They pretty much pocketed all of the monies and at the end they did not settle or help with any of the debt. My first rep. Sharon Funke tried to help me out, but months later when I tried to get answers from her boss Gerald Celmer; he refused and neglected my phone calls and all e-mails sent from me and my local attorney. They are the worst company out there to help settle debts. They state that I cancelled accounts, which I never did and charged my account. As soon as I try to collect evidence to back up their claims, they neglect to and lie about it. As far as I know, Corporate Turnaround has been banned from 2 states within the US for fraudulent charges and for not obeying the state's consumer laws. They prey on people that are very vulnerable and are desperate to get out of debt, but honestly they are anybody's worst nightmare. This company will just take your money and think that they can get away with their inconsistent billing that does not match any of their contract fees and charges. Sharon Funke tried to do the right thing and as soon as she was going to credit me back my monies that they did not earn or were never going to earn, she coincidently leaves the company. And now this new rep. is handed my accounts and all he does is argue and lie about his boss getting back to me and my attorney. Never does and just charge up my account and absolutely did nothing to help me out. How can they sleep at night?

  • Br
      9th of May, 2013
    0 Votes

    Clearly "Fanking" works for Corporate Turnaround and has posted a rediculous response to make the company seem to be something it is not!

  • Di
      17th of May, 2013
    -1 Votes

    I too worked with Sharon and was surprised that suddenly she was no longer with the company. Just as I was ready to settle up with my last three creditors, my account "defaulted" and guess what? It went back into negotiations jacking the savings away and more fee's for CT. I am so sick of this, I am ready to change my bank account number and stop the excessive fee's and deal with a bankruptcy attorney. My credit is already screwed and all I'm doing is helping CT get rich! Any advise out there would be helpful, thanks a bunch!!

  • Ta
      9th of May, 2017
    -1 Votes

    My company also was scammed by Corporate Turn Around. Anthony Passanante only negotiated one of my three predatory lenders and had me negotiate the other two myself because they would not talk to him. Then he kept our money instead of forwarding it to pay our lenders. The claim to help small business but they stold money from us. 4500.00 STAY AWAY FROM THESE PEOPLE. Contact me if you have a class action suite going and I will join.
    Roger Tarbell
    Greer Appliance Warehouse and Service LLC

  • Ti
      13th of Feb, 2018
    -2 Votes

    I have worked in collections for banks, credit unions and small businesses for years. Companies like these.. both commercial and consumer debt consolidation companies, promise to save small businesses and consumers lots of money by negotiating down the balances. I can tell you that, the financial institutions that I have worked for usually have a strict policy to not deal w/ 3rd party entities because they make ridiculous low ball offers and try to stretch any settlement out so long that it's not worth it. Declining to work with them is their right as the lender. So any promise that your creditors will or must work with them is dishonest.

    When most companies/consumers get in to financial trouble, it's often a much better solution to contact the lender directly and really sit down and work out payment arrangements. But you have to be realistic in what you are offering to the creditors. If there is a legitimate ability to pay then lenders are always open to working something out rather than taking a loss or incurring additional attorney's fees. It's still amazes me that instead of doing the hard stuff to get things right, people still try and hit the easy button, and get lured into these types of schemes.

    Also, just a thought. Remember that when someone tells you they can delay the inevitable (meaning the money you owe) has delaying monies owed ever worked? It's never does... whether its interest.. fees... attorney's fees.. etc delaying on something always makes it more expensive. For a company to tell you that they will delay or buy you time... that should set off a red flag of how much more will this cost me by delaying this even further... just saying.

  • Di
      10th of Apr, 2018
    -2 Votes

    I enlisted Corporate Turnaround in January with some hope of saving my business. I can’t afford to pay even them and am shutting down and canceling. 2.5 months. They’ve paid out $669. I’ve paid them $13, 500. But I owe more apperently and they are so generously not going to collect from me. How is $12, 831 fair compensation for 2 1/2 months work?? I get everybody needs to get paid for work put in but that’s crazy. I need a way to recover some of it! Any help?

  • Br
      10th of Sep, 2018
    +1 Votes

    You know what, I DONT KNOW WHO TO BELIEVE! I screwed myself by even taking a cash advance for my business and lets face it thats what it is. I dont really think any of the three companies I owe money to can really do much of anything other than harass and threaten me. I owe less than 50K But here's the deal I borrowed the money and I believe I should pay something back ok so maybe the loaning companies took advantage and should not get back as much as they want but I had no idea where to turn when I searched on google all I got was more lenders ! I've found good and bad about CT but honestly what I've found has been way more good then bad! I just started paying them for my escrow account which is WAY less than what I was paying daily weekly MONTHLY! So I'm paying $525 a week was 600 a day and I'm going to be able to stay in business...I'd love to hear all your responses

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