Update: Since this article was originally published, the Vortex Debt Group has stopped using their name in Canada and is now telling Canadians that it is one of three different companies:
Wav Services Group, Synergy Debt Group or Clear Blue Debt Solutions. All of these companies are still run by the same people out of the same two offices in Melbourne, Florida. So the information below is still relevant.
Federal and State Governments call the Vortex Debt Group's Business Practices "Deceptive and Unfair" to Consumers
The Vortex Debt Group is a Florida based for-profit debt settlement company that began operating in Canada in October 2010 when their primary method of making money was banned in the United States. While Vortex still operates in the U.S., the U.S. government now prohibits them and all other for-profit debt settlement companies from charging their clients fees before providing them with a service (i.e. a successfully negotiated debt settlement). These new regulations were introduced after hundreds of thousands of people complained about the "fraudulent, abusive, and deceptive practices" of numerous for-profit debt settlement companies.
State governments now appear to be cracking down on the Vortex Debt Group specifically. In giving their reasons for banning Vortex from their state and ordering Vortex to refund all fees paid by their clients, the Attorney General's Office for the state of Missouri alleged that the “Vortex Debt Group engaged in deceptive and unfair practices by promising to reduce consumers' debt, taking significant fees from consumers in exchange for this claimed service, and failing to actually reduce consumers' debts. This often left consumers with more debt and less money.” - Source: BBB Consumer Alert
Article Update: July 1, 2011
The Vortex Debt Group's license to operate in the state of Colorado has been cancelled and revoked by the state's Attorney General. - Source: Colorado Attorney General's Website
The extent of Vortex's alleged "deceptive and unfair practices" is possibly reflected in a major government study that found that less than 10% of debt settlement companies' clients successful completed their debt settlement programs, 65% of their clients paid fees and never received any service, and their average client did not save any money--in fact many ended up worse off with even more debt. - Government Source
BBB Gives the Vortex Debt Group an F Rating & Warns Canadians About Them
The Vortex Debt Group is based out of Florida and has been given an F rating by the Florida Better Business Bureau (the BBB's scale is from A+ to F). The Vancouver BBB has also issued a press release warning Canadians not to deal with Vortex. CBC and CTV have also run stories warning the public about the Vortex Debt Group. Stories about Vortex are also beginning to appear in local newspapers as well.
We Do Not Recommend the Vortex Debt Group
Based on all of this information, the numerous people who have contacted us about their dealings with Vortex, and our own investigation into this company, we do not recommend their services.