Pennsylvania Senate Passes Ward Debt Settlement Legislation

Harrisburg, PA– State Senator Kim Ward (R-39) announced today the Pennsylvania State Senate passed her Debt Settlement Licensing legislation (Senate Bill 622).  The legislation was crafted to establish a legislative framework for allowing the PA Department of Banking to license debt settlement companies throughout the Commonwealth.

“Debt settlement companies are usually the last resort for consumers before they file bankruptcy, so it is was imperative that we formulate legislation that establishes criteria for licensure and provide a level of transparency for consumers when selecting a debt settlement service,” stated Ward.

The legislation is a result of a court ruling that stated the PA Banking and Securities Department lacked authority to regulate the debt settlement industry under the previously approved Debt Management Services Act of 2008.  Through cooperative work with the department and the debt settlement industry, Senate Bill 622 was crafted.  Key points to the bill include:

·        Requires debt settlement providers to be licensed by PA Department of Banking and Securities

·        Requires debt settlement providers to obtain a bond for damages from violations

·        Provides consumers with clear disclosures of the product and terms

·        Allows customers the right to terminate agreements at any time without penalty

“I appreciate the efforts of the debt settlement companies that worked with me on this legislation.  They are committed to providing a quality services for those that truly need it,” finished Ward.

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Contact: Thomas Aikens; 724-600-7002;