GRIFFIN, Ga. (CBS46) -- A report by creditcard.com says more than half of America got itself deep into debt during last year's pandemic.

Abasi Kitt did his best to work out a payment plan. Kitt is a Marta Bus driver who accrued over 35,000 dollars in debt.  He searched for a debt relief company that could help, but what he ended up with nearly cost him 17,000 dollars.

Kitt signed a three year contract with a debt validation company called The Litigation Practice Group.  Instead of negotiating a settlement, LPG challenges the debt in an effort to invalidate it.

"Well when I called them they said, you know what? A lot of these companies, they don’t word stuff correctly," Kitt told CBS's Better Call Harry, "And when they find them, they write letters and find a way to invalidate the debt."

Liz Coyle, executive director with the non profit advocacy group Georgia Watch believes companies like the Litigation Practice Group are maneuvering around Georgia's debt settlement fees.

"Just from looking at the contract, as a layperson, it appears to me they are trying to provide a debt settlement service in Georgia without charging for debt settlement, because if they did, they’d be subject to 7 percent cap on fees."

After Better Call Harry contacted the Litigation Practice Group, the company issued a full refund.  Kitt is now working with a non profit counseling service to work out a payment plan.

Copyright 2021 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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