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Apprisen is a nonprofit
organization that provides no or low-cost comprehensive financial counseling
and education services to individuals and families experiencing concerns about
budgeting, stressful debt or mortgage loans. During 2015, Apprisen conducted
almost 14,000 one-on-one counseling sessions to assists individuals with the
development of an action plan to handle their personal finances. The majority
of those sessions were provided at no cost to the consumer.
Most people start with a free initial session – a comprehensive, educational counseling session lasting 60-90 minutes that clarifies client financial situations, outlines options for resolution of issues and develops a plan of action. Counseling sessions can be done face to face, by phone or via internet. All counselors are certified through the National Foundation for Credit Counseling before the end of their first year of employment and maintain ongoing certification.
In addition to comprehensive financial counseling described above, we also offer the following programs. For services that have a modest fee, those fees can be waived or reduced because of limited income or hardship.
Debt Repayment program – Also called a Debt Management Program, we arrange alternative payments with unsecured debt such as credit card, collection accounts or medical bills so that people can pay their bills monthly during a time of financial distress.
HUD-approved Housing Counseling - we provide first time homebuyer, default and foreclosure prevention counseling.
Student Loan Counseling – For those that are struggling with student loans, we will review your student loan status, your payment options, and help you discover how to avoid default.
Credit Health Education Session - We educate consumers about credit report/scores and provide resources so they can correct errors and avoid identity theft/fraud on their own.
Bankruptcy Counseling and Education - We help severely debt-burdened individuals considering bankruptcy by our EOUST-approved Bankruptcy counseling and educate those who have already filed learn concepts and skills to help them get back on track.
Community financial education workshops and webinars cover timely and relevant topics to help people take charge of their personal finances.
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A BBB Accredited Business since
BBB has determined that Apprisen meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.
BBB accreditation does not mean that the business' products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business' product quality or competency in performing services.
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Type of Entity
Corporation for Nonprofit - Other
Business ManagementMr. Michael Kappas, President & CEO Mr. Johnny Cantrell, COO Mr. Christopher Kallay, Chief Financial Officer
Credit & Debt Counseling
Products & Services
Apprisen sells the following brand(s): n/a
Apprisen offers the following product(s): n/a
Alternate Business NamesCCCS Consumer Credit Counseling Service Consumer Credit Counseling Service of the Midwest Inc.
The organization does business nationally as Apprisen, and in local communities the organization also continues to do business as Consumer Credit Counseling Service (CCCS).
Services are available in person at the headquarters in Columbus, Ohio, and in approximately 21 local offices in 8 states - Ohio, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee and Washington.
Services are also available through counseling over the telephone and via the internet nationwide.
CCCS does not charge a fee for the initial counseling session.
If a consumer chooses to sign up for the Debt Management Program (DMP), CCCS asks for an initial sign up contribution and a small monthly contribution to help defray the cost of the program.
The Debt Management Program services are also available if the consumer is unable or prefers not to contribute.
CCCS Provides financial education workshops and seminars to community groups and organizations on a variety of topics such as budgeting, using credit wisely, understanding credit reports and scores, ID theft, and correctly managing checking accounts.
CCCS is a HUD approved housing counseling agency and provides pre-purchase, delinquency and foreclosure prevention counseling.
Reverse Equity housing counseling is also available.
CCCS offers several other services and products to consumers and does charge for these services, including:
- Credit Report Review during which a certified counselor will help them understand what is in their credit report.
- Bankruptcy Counseling and education (Pre and Post) approved by EOUST (Executive Office of the U.S. Bankruptcy Trustees) as required by the new bankruptcy legislation.
- Contingency Planning for anyone contemplating bankruptcy to learn exactly what to expect.
- Financial Health Kit which is a software based budget kit.
- Identity Theft Session for clients who want to make sure no one has stolen their identity, and to learn what to do in case it has already happened.
The purposes of Consumer Credit Counseling Service are:
- To educate and counsel on budgeting and money management.
- To help persons with debt problems develop a plan for repayment within their means and with cooperation of their creditors.
- To help prevent money management problems by fostering education on the use of credit, on budgeting and money management.
The following is an outline of procedures mostly used:
- Step One. The potential client is informed of CCCS existence by friend, relative, social service agency, creditor, T.V. spot, or other interested organizations.
- Step Two. The potential client calls CCCS for more information to schedule an appointment for an interview.
- Step Three. When the prospective client calls, an appointment is scheduled at the earliest convenient time. He or she is told what to bring to the counseling session and given directions to the office. If the client prefers, a phone session will be scheduled and the counselor will call him or her back at that time.
- Step Four. The counselor meets with the individual and obtains full information on the financial picture. This is a cooperative interview with much exploration and questioning.
The counselor educates the individual on basic money management concepts pertinent to the situation and jointly develops an action plan that identifies options for resolving the financial picture that are in the person's best interests.
The plan may include referrals to community resources.
For some, the Debt Management Program may be an option and the counselor will work with the client to set up a reduced payment plan that complies with the creditors' requirements. A budget is established for the client that mirrors the income and expenses they presented to the counselor.
If they have insufficient funds to enter into a DMP, they are given suggestions about how to reduce their expenses and ways to increase their income.
If unable to establish a DMP, and if the client is still interested in CCCS's assistance, the counselor will work with them going forward until a DMP can be established.
It is important to note that the repayment plan pertains not only to the existing principle, but also to the interest on their unsecured debt that will continue to accrue, so that when the DMP is successfully completed, the creditors included in the DMP will be paid in full.
- Step Five. Upon completion of the interview, the counselor advises the applicant of the alternatives. If the applicant decides to participate in the CCCS program, he or she signs a voluntary agreement.
- Step Six. On any involved cases requiring pro-rating in Debt Management Program, the creditors are contacted electronically and by mail and the situation explained to obtain their cooperation in acceptance of the plan set up. Most creditors want to be helpful and based on their established creditor policies, will accept a revision of payment if recommended by the counselor as part of a definite composite plan. After agreement, arrangement is established whereby the client deposits the agreed weekly, bi-weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly amount directly to the CCCS office.
- Step Seven. On a suitable disbursement date, the clients' funds are primarily disbursed electronically. In the event that the creditor does not accept electronic funds, CCCS makes out and mails checks to each of the creditors.
*BBB Note: At this time, BBB has determined that a Business Review report is more applicable than a Charity Wise Giving Report evaluation for Apprisen / CCCS, because the organization's primary source of income is related to voluntary contributions from creditors who participate in the organization's debt management plans, donations from financial institutions, and client fees, rather than solicitations of the general public for charitable contributions.