Minimum qualifying debt:
Two to five years
Phone and email
Between 15% and 25%
Last Updated: March 15, 2022
Minimum qualifying debt:
Two to five years
Phone and email
Between 15% and 25%
Free evaluation with IAPDA-certified debt consultant
$9.95 for enrolling and $9.95 per month for account servicing
Disclaimer: Depending on the state of your current credit, all debt negotiation schemes come with an inherent risk of negative impact on your credit history, which could last up to 10 years. Make sure you understand all of your credit relief options before choosing a debt settlement.
Are your unsecured loans getting out of hand? Debt settlement programs can help you pay them off more quickly and reach your goal of becoming debt-free.
Many Freedom Debt Relief reviews praise the company’s long-term success (they’ve settled over $10 billion in debt) and personal approach with clients. However, debt negotiation can have negative repercussions on your credit history, and some people have suffered the consequences.
So, does Freedom Debt Relief work? And, is Freedom Debt Relief a good company?
In this comprehensive Freedom Debt Relief review, we take an in-depth look to find out.
Everything You Need to Know
Freedom debt solutions have worked for hundreds of thousands of people since 2002. The company has settled much more debt than any of its competitors and currently has over 650,000 people enrolled in the program.
But debt relief is a risky business, and Freedom Relief does have a lawsuit in its history. So, are they the best option for you? Here’s everything you need to know.
What Is Freedom Debt Relief Best For?
Freedom Debt Relief can help you settle unsecured personal loans (like credit card debt) for a lower amount than the original debt. With their debt negotiation and settlement service, you can pay off your loans cheaper and quicker. The company doesn’t offer credit repair for secured debt (mortgages, car loans, etc.) or federal student loans.
Freedom Debt Relief Pros and Cons
The main perks of choosing Freedom Debt Relief include:
- Decades of experience
- Excellent working relationship with creditors
- Over $10 billion in settled credit (more than any of their competitors)
- Personal consultation with a certified expert
- Confirmation before every negotiated settlement
- No fees before you see results
- Free evaluation with no strings attached
- Consumer-centered approach
- Involved in regulation initiatives against poor credit advocacy practices
But there are downsides to opting for the Freedom Debt Relief program:
- Possible credit score damage
- Not available in all states
- Not a quick resolution
- A recent lawsuit against the company
For most people, going to a debt settlement agency only comes up when they have large amounts of unsecured personal debt. With debt negotiation, however, you risk years of credit score damage, regardless of which company you choose.
The settlement’s inherent downsides are the main con for choosing Freedom for credit relief. Otherwise, it’s the biggest and best-established agency in the space.
Is Freedom Debt Relief Legit?
Yes, Freedom Debt Relief is a legitimate company with over 18 years of experience and $10 billion in settled credit. Freedom Debt is the biggest debt settlement company in the US. It’s also a founding member of the American Fair Credit Council (AFCC), which aims to promote good credit negotiation practices.
Freedom Debt Relief Qualification Requirements
To get started, visit the company’s website and book your free evaluation with one of its experts. They will analyze the state of your credit, your options, and how much you can save by choosing credit negotiation.
To qualify, you must have a minimum total debt balance of $7,500 in unsecured personal loans. For the program to work, you need to enroll all your high balance credit cards ($500 and over.)
Keep in mind, though, that debt settlement isn’t available in all states. While the program covers 75% of the US, exceptions include Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Like other settlement companies, Freedom Debt can’t help you with secured debts (mortgage, car loan, etc.), federal student debts, taxes, utility bills, and lawsuits.
Is Freedom Debt Relief Worth It?
Since every creditor and debt situation are different, settlements will vary. Freedom Debt Relief is able to negotiate up to a 50% reduction in debt. When calculating your savings, it’s essential to factor in Freedom Debt’s fees.
Here are some examples from its recent top settlements:
- The client started with $2,201.00 of enrolled debt and wound up paying $1,093.80 (50% of the original amount). After the fee, they paid 73% of the enrolled debt for total savings of 27%.
- $9,611.00 of enrolled debt was negotiated down to $4,502.35 (a 60% reduction). After fees, they paid 61% of the original amount for 39% of total savings.
- $5,556.00 of credit went down to $3,484.00 (a 59.99% discount,) but the fees lowered the savings to 17.01%.
You only pay Freedom Debt Relief after it has made a settlement.
So, what are your total savings? A conservative guess would be around 20%, but this can go up to almost 50%. Then, you can factor in interest savings — for some people this is thousands of dollars.
Freedom Debt Relief Services
The company takes you through all the steps from debt evaluation to settling and getting rid of your loans. With the Freedom Debt Relief dashboard, you can stay on top of your account and progress on the program. Freedom also has educational videos and very detailed articles to help you learn more about debt and prevent you from struggling again.
Before you start a debt settlement program, it’s essential to get educated on what it entails and if it’s the best option for you. This is why Freedom Debt offers free consultations with IAPDA-certified debt consultants to help you understand your options and come up with a roadmap for becoming debt-free.
How Does Freedom Debt Relief Work
There are five steps in Freedom Debt’s debt negotiation program:
During a phone consultation, an expert will go through your credit to help you decide if debt settlement is right for you. They will create a plan to approach your credit, customizing the debt relief program to fit your needs and budget.
You’ll start building up savings in a dedicated FDIC-insured account. Most creditors won’t take you seriously unless you have some savings you can offer, so this step is essential. The account is in your name, and only you can control the cash there.
While you’re building up funds, you stop paying your creditors and communicating with them. This can incur late fees and penalties since you become delinquent on the account. The goal is to negotiate an amount lower than the original balance, even with these fees. Still, this step can damage your credit with adverse effects lasting up to seven years.
Freedom Debt Relief negotiators will contact your creditors and work toward a settlement. Since Freedom Debt has been around for nearly twenty years, it has a stable working relationship with most lenders and can help you achieve significant savings (even over 50% of the original amount).
Settle and Pay Off
Once the lender agrees to a settlement, the company sends you over the terms so you can approve them. Freedom Debt Relief doesn’t have access to your savings account, and it can’t make any decisions without your consent. Once you give the company a yes, the creditor gets paid, and the debt disappears from your credit history.
Then, you rinse and repeat until all of your debts are settled and cleared.
How Much Does Freedom Debt Relief Cost?
The company’s fees range from 15% to 25% of the original loan amount. The exact percentage depends on the enrolled debt amount and your state. The company doesn’t charge you upfront. Instead, it charges you after each debt is settled.
In addition to the debt settlement cost, there is a $9.95 fee for opening your dedicated account and $9.95/month for account services.
Freedom Debt Relief Customer Service
Freedom Debt boasts stellar customer support with credit consultants and customer service reps available seven days per week. You can contact the company on its phone number or by email.
In numerous Freedom Debt Relief customer reviews, users have praised the support agents’ friendliness and effective resolution of problems. Still, it can’t be stressed enough that debt settlement is time-consuming and comes with certain risks that customer service reps can’t always help with.
Freedom Debt Relief Customer Reviews
The Freedom Debt Relief BBB rating is A, with overwhelmingly positive client reviews. The lower ratings are due to a recent government action against the company, not due to Freedom Debt Relief service complaints. It’s worth mentioning that the company addresses all the issues in no time, which is a huge plus.
Freedom Debt Relief reviews on Reddit and consumer opinion sites are very divided. Here are the main takeaways:
The main points of praise that come up in the average company review include:
- Outstanding customer support and attention (personal consultations, open during extended hours, and very helpful)
- The most reliable option, as far as debt settlement companies go
- Upfront about the risks and benefits of choosing a debt negotiation solution
- Clarity on how your account is going with 24/7 access to your dashboard
- No decisions are taken without consulting you
- Fees are only due when a debt is settled
Overall, consumers agree that Freedom Debt is one of the most prominent and most well-established companies in the space, and you can count on them to reach the best settlement on your behalf.
The main downside that comes up in Freedom Debt Relief reviews is that their program doesn’t promise success but destroys your credit. Once you stop paying off your credit, the late fees, penalties, and damage to your credit score will follow. This is done in the hopes of creditors agreeing to receive a lower amount than the original loan (but still get some of their money back.) The catch is Freedom Debt can’t guarantee creditors will agree to settle. But when you stop payments, the negative credit history is virtually guaranteed.
And if you’re suspicious whether or not Freedom Debt Relief is a scam, the answer is clearly no. There will always be unhappy clients, but this fact doesn’t make a company a hoax. In addition, Freedom Debt Relief is totally upfront about all the risks that debt relief services may incur. For many reviewers, these risks were simply not worth it, and they didn’t even manage to save that much on the original loan.
Freedom Debt Relief Lawsuit
In 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed a lawsuit against Freedom Debt Relief, alleging that the company had violated:
- The Telemarketing Sales Rule with advance fees and misleading customers on their rights over funds deposited with the company.
- The Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010 by charging upfront fees (before settling a debt,) charging for settlements achieved by clients, and misleading customers by having them believe Freedom Debt could negotiate with all their creditors.
The Freedom Debt Relief scam allegations were settled for a hefty sum. Freedom Debt had to reimburse the misled clients and pay an additional $5 million civil penalty.
Some reviewers still allege that Freedom Debt Relief lies about the potential results and savings.
While the company has improved its practices (and they’re under a lot of scrutiny by regulation bodies), do your research and make sure you’re making an informed decision, rather than only trusting their recommendation.
Is Freedom Debt Relief the Best for You?
Debt settlement comes with the risk of long-term credit score damage. So, regardless of which agency you choose, it should be one of your last options. As far as debt negotiation goes, though, Freedom Debt Relief is one of the most reputable companies on the market. They have years of experience, a serious working relationship with most creditors, and a history of billions in settled debt.
Our Freedom Debt Relief review bottom line is clear:
Debt settlement is not for everyone. But if you decide it’s right for you, Freedom Debt Relief is one of the best places to go.
Alternatives of Freedom Debt Relief
Here is how the company stacks up to its main competitor in the debt negotiation market. There are also plenty of non-settlement alternatives to Freedom, including debt consolidation, debt restructuring, a credit repair service, or strategic bankruptcy.
Freedom Debt Relief vs National Debt Relief
National Debt Relief’s services also have a minimum debt amount of $7,500, but they can only help you with up to $100,000 in unsecured debt. They’re available in more states than Freedom Debt Relief. The company’s coverage doesn’t include Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Maine, New Hampshire, Oregon, South Carolina, Vermont, and West Virginia. Their fees are comparable to Freedom Debt Relief, ranging between 15% and 25% of the enrolled debt.
Debt relief reviews point out that settlement comes with so many risks that it’s one of the last resorts before bankruptcy. While there are many potential benefits and savings, consider your options carefully before making a decision.
If you do go for it, though, Freedom Debt Relief is a popular and reliable choice. With years of experience, billions in settled debt, and thousands of positive Freedom Debt Relief reviews online, this is one of the best options on the market.
- 24/7 access to your client dashboard
- No fees before a settlement is achieved
- Free consultation with a certified debt expert
- Full control over your dedicated savings account
- Recent government lawsuit against the company
- Late payments show up on your credit history for up to seven years
- It can take between two and five years to become completely debt-free
What Is Freedom Debt Relief?
Freedom Debt Relief is a debt settlement agency that can help you negotiate with creditors and get out of debt quicker. Its team will talk to lenders on your behalf and try to settle for a lower amount than the original debt. You approve every settlement before it comes through, and FreedomDebt only charges you for a settled debt.
Is Freedom Debt Relief legit?
Yes, Freedom Debt Relief is a legitimate company registered back in 2002. It is accredited by the American Fair Credit Council (AFCC) and the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
Is it a good idea to use Freedom Debt Relief?
Debt settlement is a risky choice since it involves a period of not paying your creditors (which immediately translates into negative credit items). But if you decide it’s the right decision for you, Freedom Debt Relief is one of the best companies to go to.
How does Freedom Debt Relief affect your credit?
For debt settlement to work, you have to stop your payments, making you delinquent on these accounts. The late fees and penalties show up on your credit history, lowering your score. What is more, when a debt is settled, it doesn’t show as “Paid in Full” but rather “Paid-Settled” or another indication that you didn’t cover the full amount. This isn’t nearly as good as paying in full, though it will improve your score.
Is Freedom Debt Relief bad for your credit?
Yes, debt settlement programs can damage your credit during the non-payments stage.
How long does Freedom Debt Relief affect your credit?
The late payments can stay on your credit history for up to seven years. Being responsible and getting educated on debt management is the best way to get your credit score back to a healthy place as soon as possible.
What percentage does Freedom Debt Relief charge?
Depending on your state and amount of enrolled debt, Freedom Debt Relief charges between 15% and 25%. You only owe fees on the debt settled by the company, and you have to agree before each pay-off comes through.
Can I get out of Freedom Debt Relief?
Yes, you can cancel the debt relief program. But this can get you into even more problems. When you don’t finish the program, the interest rates will go back up since you lose the negotiated concessions. Some of the fees that were previously waived might also come back. The credit history damage of the late payments (at the beginning of the program) will further harm your financial future.