I was contacted by phone by a lady named Monica Mills, ext. 498, phone number [protected]. She said I was approved for a 15, 000 dollar loan. (I live in Utah, and I just saw a story on the news last night with a different co. name and sending place, but otherwise identical!) I had been applying for loans online so I thought I must have got approved for one of them. I didn't have the deed to any land to use as collateral so I either had to pay the first 6 months of payments, $1430, or an 'assurance' fee of $1400 to a company to get my loan.
I thought this was great, and it made sense that I would have to pay to get a loan since my credit was poor. So, I signed the contract that was emailed to me and faxed it back along with a copy of a voided check so it could be direct deposited, a copy of my drivers license, a copy of my pay stubs, a utility bill for address verification, and a copy of my social security card.
I researched online for this company and there were no scam stories about it. As far as I know, this will be the first one, so I guess they are 'new.'
Monica told me I could pay $1000 of the assurance policy now, and $400 after I got my loan. The more I read online about scams the more skeptical I became. I said I didn't have that much and she reduced the amount I had to pay before getting the loan to $700, then $600, then $500. I was supposed to wire the money by moneygram to Carl Hoffman in Sacramento California.
When I asked who was funding my loan I was told that it was a private equity investor in Bountin Valley CA, and they couldn't give me information, but after my loan was funded I would be sent out a packet. While going through all of this, they said I only had a week or my funds would be given to someone else or 'sent back to the lender.'
I wired the $500 but was then told that since I was “high risk" on my credit report, the insurance company wanted me to pay the other $500 before they would issue the policy. I don't know exactly what I was thinking but I did it.
The loan was supposed to be deposited in my account that day but wasn't. The next day they said that the lender was skeptical and if I paid the last $400 the loan would be in my account with in two to three hours. Stupidly, I still sent them the last $400. Obviously, the money was never put in my account.
The next day I contacted my lawyer who called them wanting to know where my money was. When being questioned they hung up on her and will not answer the phone when we call now. We are in the process of trying to get my money back since they said I could be issued a full refund plus the “cost of sending" the money orders. I don't think that their address is real so hopefully some miracle will happen! These guys are good and have answers to all of the questions. DO NOT send them your money! I am just out $1400, which I didn't have to begin with. Not to mention that they now have all of my personal information.
When I looked up the registration of their domain/website, it said it had been created on 10/18/2008 and would expire 10/18/2009. Today is 10/31/08, and my first phone call was on 10/22/08. I can't believe people out there would really stoop so low like this and rip off people that are in need. It is horrible! I have read so many stories online now, please don't wire your money to any company in hopes of getting a loan. Even if they guarantee it. Everything this company has told me has been a lie and they made me believe it for too long! Be careful! Don't wire money (moneygram/Western Union) no matter what they tell you!
The complaint has been investigated and resolved to the customer’s satisfaction.