(Anchorage, AK) – Alaska Attorney General Treg Taylor filed a lawsuit against seven corporations and eight individuals who operated a fraudulent timeshare exit scheme that defrauded elderly Alaskan consumers. The lawsuit alleges that the defendants promised to get consumers out of their timeshare contracts in exchange for large upfront payments, often in excess of $10,000, but then failed to follow through on their promises.
“Our office will work hard to bring scammers to justice,” said Attorney General Taylor. “But we also want to remind Alaska consumers to remain vigilant. Consumers should always be wary of companies that use scare tactics to create a sense of urgency. A company that refuses to give you a few days to think over a big financial commitment probably isn’t the kind of company you want to do business with.”
The Attorney General’s complaint names Consumer Law Protection, LLC, Consumer Rights Council, Premier Reservations Group, LLC, Resort Transfer Group, LLC, Square One Development Group, Inc., Square One Group, LLC, Timeshare Help Source, Christopher Carroll, George Reed, Louann Reed, Scott Jackson, Eduardo Balderas, Sherrod Banks, Courtney Kirkpatrick, and Gary Adamson as defendants. The suit was filed on June 23.
The defendants are accused of targeting timeshare owners using a deceptive direct mail campaign, which lured timeshare owners to sales presentations at Anchorage hotels with deceptive promises of a $250 shopping card and information on how to eliminate timeshare maintenance fees, improve their ownership experience, or legally exit their timeshare.
When the timeshare owners arrived at the sales presentations, the defendants used hard sales tactics, including telling the timeshare owners that their maintenance fees would skyrocket, that their heirs would be forced to pay the maintenance fees in perpetuity, and that the only way to exit their timeshare contracts was to pay for the defendants’ timeshare exit services.
The lawsuit states that, so far, the Department of Law has identified nine Alaskan consumers who paid the defendants a total of $113,521.85. But there may be additional victims who have not yet been identified.
The Department of Law provided the following advice to timeshare owners who are looking to get out of their timeshare contract.
- Check to see if your resort management company has an exit program. The American Resort Development Association has a tool that can help you identify the company you need to contact: https://responsibleexit.com/#sectionfour.
- If you decide to hire someone to sell your timeshare, make sure the person you hire is a licensed real estate agent or broker.
- Be wary of any company that demands up upfront payment for timeshare exit services
- Understand that the timeshare market is saturated. It may be difficult or impossible to resell your timeshare for the full purchase price. Set reasonable expectations and don’t fall for scammers who make promises that seem too good to be true.
If you believe you are an Alaskan resident who was a victim of timeshare exit schemes, you are encouraged to fill out a consumer complaint form at https://law.alaska.gov/department/civil/consumer/cp_complaint.html or call the Department of Law’s Consumer Protection Unit at (907) 269-5200.
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