Timeshare giant Diamond Resorts has issued further proceedings against Pandora Marketing, a firm that have been marketing their timeshare exit services to consumers desperate to get rid of their timeshares.
Diamond Resorts is no stranger to taking firms to court who purport helping people out of their timeshare burdens, and currently has 15 lawsuits against timeshare exit firms in the United States alone. In new papers handed to the court in the case against Pandora Marketing, Diamond say they have fresh evidence that proves the company has been running a nationwide scam conning hundreds of Diamond Resort timeshare owners out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Diamond resorts have issued new legal filings to the court which includes statements from owners stating that the firm demanded large upfront fees in exchange for timeshare exit services. In some cases, the firm charged clients huge fees, some in excess of $100,000 for services they said were being performed by lawyers. What happened, according to witness statements, was that clients were misled and coerced into paying these fees, strung along for months on end and none of the services promised were performed. Diamond says that instead of actually performing any legal services for these people, the company misled people into believing they could stop paying maintenance fees, which eventually resulted in foreclosure and a negative impact on peoples credit ratings, which went down because of default on payments.
Diamond also state that they have evidence that the company was operating a scam and produced to the court saved messages from witnesses. In one a timeshare owner explained how he was made to believe a specialist group of timeshare lawyers would litigate the cancellation of his timeshare. Because of his belief in this company, he paid them $70,000 but later learned the firm took his money and simply employed a lawyer to send Diamond an exit letter which cost them $700. Another victim has been left with debts more than $120,000 in credit card bills after the company repeatedly demanded money from them.
CEO of Diamond Resorts, Michael Flaskey said in a statement: “It is absolutely despicable to hear how vacation owners have been scammed by these nefarious companies. We will continue to do everything in our power to protect our members from being misled by these companies and will aggressively pursue every avenue to hold these companies to account.”
Why are there so many timeshare scams around?
There are countless stories on the internet about fraudulent companies acting in bad faith and taking advantage of timeshare owners who are desperate to get rid of them. And Diamond may be correct on this occasion to go after a company that are clearly defrauding innocent people out of staggering amounts of money. Something which is unethical and immoral, especially when these people are simply trying to find a way out of something that is probably causing them financial problems, and by defrauding them, scammers know they are putting these people in further financial ruin. However, whilst resorts are happy to highlight companies acting fraudulently, they will not acknowledge the reason why so many of these companies exists in the first place. Firstly, these cons are often run by ex-timeshare sales representatives, so they know the system inside out. But they also know that resorts will do anything to keep hold of their members and their important maintenance fees and will make it as difficult for people to leave as possible. It makes knowing who to trust when it comes to anything timeshare very difficult and understandably, owners are often confused about what to do when it comes to exiting a timeshare. Perhaps if the resorts themselves looked at the way they treated people who had genuine reasons for wanting to end their contracts and acted with more compassion and understanding, fraudulent companies and scammers would not have a market in which they can so freely find people in which to victimise and con out of their hard-earned money.