First Financial Services - US Financial - Credit Recovery Prog are definately scam artists. I was called in early April 2004 by a Clint Blackwood who had told me that I was approved through their program for a credit card with a limit of $4,000. I imediately questioned him cause I know my credit would not warrent me getting a credit balance of this amount. Clint told me that this was a new program designed to help consumers like myself with bad credit. When we reached the bottom line about the cost ($259.95) Clint told me, "If this amount will put you in a financial bind, you will be able to use your credit card to do a cash advance to cover the cost of the program". He told me that the package will come UPS within a week, but went on to say that it can take up to 15 days for people who live in Alaska and Hawaii. He said once I receive the first package, all I would need to do is sign the Terms & Conditions and fax it to the bank. Within 3 days I will receive a 2nd UPS package containing the card. (lies...all lies)
I ordered the package and advised them to future date it for the end of the month. Which they did. After the first week and no package, I called and spoke to Mike Lopez. He told me that the package had not been sent yet cause they had ot received the reports from the ACH company yet, but it will be sent ASAP. On June 16th, I finally received the package and was utterly disappointed. I made an immediate call to complain and to request a refund. I was told by Mike Lopez that everything was fine and tht the banks that were included in the package have an agreement with them and I will get a card. "Don't Worry" he said.
I called MBNA bank and was told that the processing time took 30 days and that I would not get a response until then. I called First Financial back (while they were still answering the phone) and complained about their lies. I was told then that I would need two denials to get a refund. Ofcourse I cursed him out and couldn't wait to get my denial letters.
Only July 27th, I finally received my second denial letter and called them immediately. They gave me a bogus number to a processing center that had no record of working with them. The rep who took my call, did try to help and asked that I provide my statement so that he could track the transaction. No Luck. I called First Financial again and again and again until I finally got through. I was then told that I had to return the package and that my refund would be minus shipping charges. WHAT!!! First of all, I had to pay the post office to send this package back to Canada (which isn't cheap) and take a loss for dealing with these crooks. No way, I argued with them.
I contacted the Better Business Bureau for assistance with their shadey business practices and was told to go ahead and follow their refund process and let them know the outcome. So I scraped what little money I had together and sent the package with a return receipt (all I could afford). The postal rep told me that it will take a long time to get the receipt confirmation back since it was going to Canada.
After a month, I tried calling them and left many messages with no return call. I contacted the Better Business Bureau again to advise that I still had not received my refund. The told me that they will work on the case and if I hear from First Financial to let them know. Another month went by with no refund.
A couple of days ago I stumbled across this site looking for information on another business and decided to punch in the name. Low and behold these rats were listed. After carfully reading each entry for this bogus company I uncovered some useful information and a new number of 416-922-2278. This number has the original answering machine message that I got when they were answering the phone. Also thanks to Nigel, I was able to locate the company that processed the ACH. So I took the advice left by Ed Magedson about getting my money back. I must admit the first day was challeging. Getting nowhere with my bank, who by the way had the ACH company listed as Credit Recovery Prog, I contacted Payment Resources International (888-835-1777). he first day I was told that there was nothing they could do cause they no longer process for this company anymore (as of 9/21/04). I read through Ed's advice again to see if there was something else I was missing.
Today I called back to speak with the CEO. Never got to talk with him but in the course of making my threats and demanding that someone get him on the phone I was hung up on 3 times. Yes, I called back and continued with my demands until I finally got someone who was smart enough to handle my refund. When I spoke with Robert, he told me that they were holding a reserve of funds and that he would process my refund out of that reserve and I should see my funds back into my account early next week.
I have still been unable to contact the dirty rats who are scaming people and wish a world of hurt upon them. And I am disgusted with the non-progress of the BBB. My fullest gratitude goes out to RipOffReport.com for being here. I wished i had known about you sooner. If there is anything I can do to help put these low down dirty rotten bastards out of business and behind bars... just let me know.
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