Ford warns of credit repair and insurance scams
Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford, in partnership with the Nevada Division of Insurance, on Wednesday encouraged Nevadans to remain vigilant as scammers try to take advantage of struggling individuals and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. .
With the American Rescue Plan Act, Nevada residents have until August 15 to enroll or change their health plans in the health insurance marketplace due to the COVID-19 emergency. Nevadans looking for a new plan should be aware that deceptive telemarketers and websites have advertised discounted medical and short-term plans, falsely claiming they are compliant with the affordable care.
Entities contact consumers through robocalls, telemarketing, or through deceptive websites that appear legitimate and may have names similar to legitimate insurance companies.
“When shopping for insurance, stick to the Nevada Health Link website as your first stop,” Ford said. “These fake websites are intentionally confusing, leaving consumers who fall in love with them with unpaid medical bills.”
“Limited health benefit plans have a purpose but are not intended for long-term use and have gaps in coverage because they are not designed to be comprehensive health insurance, whereas plans that comply with the ACA are,” Insurance Commissioner Barbara Richardson said. “Be vigilant, understand the policy you’re buying, and contact the division if you have questions.”
If you receive an unsolicited call from a health insurance company, do not provide any personal information over the phone. Consumers are encouraged to research the difference between limited benefit plans, ACA-compliant plans, and other plan types by visiting http://insurance101.nv.gov/. The website also lists all Nevada companies that are licensed to sell plans and advice on buying insurance.
To verify that a person, agency, or business is licensed by the Division of Insurance, visit the division’s website. The Nevada State Division of Insurance regulates Nevada’s insurance industry.
As Nevadans begin to emerge after a tough year, many consumers may be looking for a fresh start on their credit. Credit repair companies offer the opportunity to get your credit back on track, but Nevada residents should be aware that some of these companies may not be completely legitimate.
“If you’re unhappy with your credit, you can take steps to fix it yourself,” Ford said. “If you’d rather pay someone to set up a reimbursement plan for you, be on the lookout for deceptive companies that may be trying to get your personal information.”
If you want to hire a credit repair company, the Consumer Protection Bureau offers the following tips for spotting a scam. Be alert if a company asks you to pay all fees in advance before doing any work on your behalf, asks you to dispute information on your credit report that you know is accurate, promises to delete all negative information from your credit report or fails to do so. t explain your legal rights when they tell you about their services.
Some companies may charge a one-time fee ranging from $15 to $200 to open the account. But no credit repair agency can charge a consumer money until the service is fully performed. With your legal consent, the company can dispute and clean up any inaccuracies with the three major credit bureaus or directly with creditors. If a company tells you to say you’ve been the victim of identity theft when you’re not, that’s illegal.
Credit repair takes time and not all negatives can be removed and legitimate credit repair companies must include a copy of consumer credit file rights. In addition, you have the right to cancel all services without incurring penalties within three working days.
Under the CARES Act, you can get an extension and forbearance on certain types of loans for up to 180 days. These protections are valid until June 30. Homeowners with federally guaranteed loans may be able to apply for mortgage forbearance. Federal student loans are eligible for suspension and default, and interest rates are set at zero until September 30.
If you have been the victim of a crime related to the COVID-19 pandemic, please file a complaint about your experience with the Attorney General’s Office and the National Center for Disaster Hotline at 1-866-720-5721 or by emailing the NCFD at firstname.lastname@example.org