Bkcert.com Other Disclosures
Debt Education & Certification Foundation (DECAF) provides the following disclosures about bankruptcy pre-filing credit counseling and pre-discharge debtor education courses:
Before providing counseling, we disclosed and you acknowledged and agreed to the following:
- Debt Education and Certification Foundation (DECAF) and Money Management International, Inc. (MMI) are nonprofit agencies. Their employees will counsel and advise you on money management and budgeting pertaining to your financial situation. Counselors are not attorneys and cannot give legal advice. If you want legal or tax advice, including that concerning bankruptcy, you will need to seek appropriate assistance from other parties. DECAF Supervising counselors have received college degrees and have completed 100+ hours of training in credit counseling, personal financial matters and bankruptcy counseling and have conducted 100+ one-on-one sessions for credit counseling, personal financial matters or bankruptcy counseling. DECAF counselors have received or are in the process of obtaining certification from the National Association of Certified Credit Counselors. For information on qualifications of individual counselors, contact DECAF at 1-866-859-7323 or MMI at 1-888-492-1740.
- Client privacy is important to us and the counseling services we provide are confidential. However, as part of the counseling process, it may be necessary for us to contact specific creditors, with your permission, to secure information that will assist us in providing you with accurate guidance. Authorized agencies with legitimate authority to monitor the agency's practices may review your file for quality assurance, compliance or research purposes. If such a review should occur, findings will be kept confidential. DECAF's privacy notice is available on our website: www.BKcert.com.
- Debt Education and Certification Foundation does not receive ongoing funding from credit card companies or other types of lenders. Funding is received by students completing credit counseling and debtor education courses. DECAF does not pay or receive fees or other consideration for the referral of debtor students to or by the provider. DECAF does not provide services for debt repayment plans or debt negotiation. The completion of a credit counseling or debtor education course does not negatively affect your credit rating or credit report. Information on the possible impact to your credit rating from filing a bankruptcy should be obtained from an attorney or outside source.
- If requesting a pre-bankruptcy counseling session or online pre-discharge education, you will be charged a fee of $50.00 (or the session will be prepaid through your attorney's office) for this service and related certificate; however, we will not refuse services to anyone due to their inability to pay. The inability to pay a fee for services will be assessed based on regulation from the State in which you reside and on your annual gross income in relation to Federal Poverty Level Guidelines. The only acceptable form of payment online is debit card or credit card. If you feel you qualify for a fee waiver you must contact DECAF at 1-866-859-7323. You authorize DECAF to provide your attorney and/or bankruptcy judge/trustee with copies of your action plan (if created), pre-bankruptcy counseling certificate, pre-discharge certificate as well as any other required information gathered during the counseling session.
- DECAF provides online counseling and education courses over the internet 24/7 with the exception of downtime to due to natural disaster, system failure or for maintenance.
- The pre-filing certificate you will receive at the conclusion of your counseling session is required before you can file personal bankruptcy. Please give a copy of this certificate to your attorney when you meet.
- The pre-filing certificate received at the end of your counseling session is valid for 180 days from the date of your counseling session. If you do not file a bankruptcy petition within this time frame, you may be required to complete pre-filing counseling again in order to file personal bankruptcy.
- The fee for bankruptcy pre-filing credit counseling is $50.00 per household (if taking the course jointly with a spouse). The fee for bankruptcy post-filing debtor education is $50.00 per household (if taking the course jointly with a spouse). This fee must be paid to DECAF, either directly or through your attorney. Clients registered for courses by their attorney through an attorney account with DECAF may receive discounted course fees below the normal fee of $50. The fees for a course will not exceed $50, regardless of how the client is registered.
- DECAF receives its funding from the course fees that are paid by individuals taking the course and from donations from individuals. DECAF does not pay or receive fees or other consideration for the referral of debtor students to or by the provider.
- Fee waiver is available in cases where the debtor has income less than 150 percent of the poverty guidelines last published by the United States Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) (). Review these guidelines with your attorney to see if you qualify. If you qualify call 866-859-7323 or send a written request, along with evidence of income, to: DECAF, 112 Goliad St., Benbrook, TX 76126-2009