FAQs

General Questions

You receive free credit counseling. You and your counselor set a budget and action plan with goals and solutions. Your plan may include a Debt Management Plan, re-structuring your finances for you to pay or filing bankruptcy. It is your decision!

All information you present your counselor remains with the employees and is used to help you with your creditors. All employees and auditors sign approved confidentiality statements in accordance with the State of Iowa confidentiality laws.

No. You may handle all counseling and your Debt Management Plan through your computer, telephone, fax or by visiting a counselor in either of our offices. Click here for location and contact information.

About Debt Management

  • Some companies stop or reduce interest, which helps reduce debt.
  • Most companies stop late payment and over-limit charges
  • Most companies accept smaller payments
  • Collection calls cease
  • CCCS bundles your unsecured debt and contacts your creditors
  • Proposals are sent to set up payment plans for predetermined bills
  • You retain control of your own credit and debt
  • You continue to pay basic bills such as rent, mortgage and utilities etc.

You deposit a payment with CCCS to cover your credit education program and the company’s proposals charge. The average payment is $70.00. This payment must be made before proposals are mailed to creditors. This also pays for our education program called MoneyMap, including your textbook and all classes. Payments to your creditors are calculated at first meeting.

The forms include an application, list of debts, statement of services and a contract for services. We formally begin working on your plan when signed paperwork and funds are received.

All payments must be made by cashiers check, money order, Western Union or ACH transfers from your bank or credidt union or paycheck. Ask your bank if you can receive free bank checks during the first three months of the Plan. The charge is small at Kwik Trip and Walmart.

Deposits are due by the 5th and the 20th. Payments received by the 5th are mailed to creditors on the 10th and payments received by the 20th go out the 25th. Payments received after the due date go out the next payment date. All payments must be made to the CCCS office in Waterloo.

 

All client funds go into a trust account owned by the creditors and CCCS for payment of client bills. This trust account is audited              is audited annually. 

Each month, you receive a client statement mailed on the 10th of the month detailing the creditors and payments with new balances. The companies continue to send you the statements. You need to bring, or email in, your statements in every three months for updating and comparison. Should you notice an error, call the accounts manager at once.

 

Yes, just in order to work with your creditors. Unless we have the power to negotiate on your behalf, we cannot acknowledge even knowing you. Your creditors need to know we are your financial agents in this repayment plan.

Payments are determined according to creditor policy. Some companies require higher payments than others. At the time you set up a contract, your counselor will give you an estimated payoff which includes interest. Within 30 days of signing a contract, CCCS will send you a “client pay out” which is a computer printout specifying a more precise payout including all known interest rates. As policies change and interest accrues, this will change as well. Bring, email or send statements to our office every three months. We will update the records and make sure all payments are correctly recorded.

CCCS works for clients under Iowa State Division of Banking rules. DOB requires a debt management contract to be set up for no longer than 60 months. The client, the amount of available income and the amount of debt determine the length of contract. A contract can last only two years if you can repay all your debt within two years. The average client completes his contract in 2.5 years. The creditors and their interest rate with beginning balances determine length of time to pay-off. If your debt extends beyond 60 months, we will amend the contract to continue the plan. We will work with you if you have loss of job, illness, family separation and other such unavoidable problems.

 

Participation in the DMP may affect your credit report either favorably or unfavorably, according to your creditor’s policies with respect to the DMP and your payment history prior to and during your participating in the DMP. We will talk to loan officers to put in a good word for you. Most likely your credit will improve because you will be making regular, monthly payments. One client saw his credit increase 60 points in a one year period!

 

While CCCS is non-profit, a combinatiion of client contributions and grants must cover our costs. The client and counselor determine what a client can afford and what the cost of this service is. The fee is built into the regular, monthly payment. No one is ever denied service because of inability to pay. If you do not have enough income to repay debt we  suggest you reduce expenses, work extra hours, get a second job or more family income, review loans. Recounsel when that has occured to begin debt repayment.