WASHINGTON (10/30/15)--Illegal charging millions of dollars in fees to students and families across the country led the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to take action against Global Financial Support Inc.
The CFPB filed a complaint in federal court seeking a halt to the illegal activities and relief for tens of thousands of harmed consumers.
The California-based Global Financial Support Inc. operates under the names College Financial Advisory and Student Financial Resource Center.
“Student Financial Resource Center and College Financial Advisory scammed thousands of students by masquerading as government agencies and other trusted organizations,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Students and families were looking for information on how to pay for college, instead they were illegally charged millions of dollars for sham financial services.”
According to the bureau complaint, the deceptive scheme operates under the guise of a government or university-affiliated operation. The defendants allegedly send millions of deceptive letters to students and their families claiming to match them with targeted financial aid assistance programs for a fee.
The letters allegedly instruct students to fill out and return an application and a fee--ranging from $59 to $78--to apply for the maximum merit and need-based financial aid programs. In exchange for the fee, the company allegedly promises it will conduct extensive searches to target or match consumers with individualized financial aid opportunities.
In reality, consumers either receive nothing in exchange for sending in their application and fee, or they get a generic booklet that fails to provide individualized advice, while the scheme reaps millions of dollars in illegal fees.