Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Rochester does a lot more than credit counseling

  • Tuition-Free Degree Program: The Excelsior Scholarship

    Recently, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the Excelsior scholarship, which will provide tuition-free college at New York’s public colleges and universities to families making up to $125,000 a year. Under the Excelsior Scholarship, nearly 80 percent, or 940,000 middle-class families and individuals making up to $125,000 per year, would qualify to attend college tuition-free at all CUNY and SUNY two- and four-year colleges in New York State.
    A regional breakdown of families who would be eligible for the program is available below. 
    The new program will be phased in over three years, beginning for New Yorkers making up to $100,000 annually in the fall of 2017, increasing to $110,000 in 2018, and reaching $125,000 in 2019.  Scholars must be enrolled in college full-time and average 30 credits per year (including Summer and January semesters) in order to receive the funding, however, the program has built in flexibility so that any student facing hardship is able to pause and restart the program, or take fewer credits one semester than another.   Students are required to maintain a grade point average necessary for the successful completion of their coursework, and, as the program makes a major investment in the state’s greatest asset – our young people – scholars will be required to live and work in-state for the same number of years after graduation as they received the scholarship.
    These initiatives build on the Governor’s commitment to making college affordable for all students in the Empire State, including the nation-leading 'Get On Your Feet' Loan Forgiveness Program, which allows eligible college graduates living in New York to pay nothing on their student loans for the first two years out of school.
    Visit the website to learn more about the Excelsior Scholarship and to be electronically notified when you may apply by entering you email address on the Excelsior Scholarship Alert for...

  • Tips for Retirement

    Here are a few tips to consider at different phases of life to make sure you are on the right track to retirement readiness.
    If you're in your 20s,...

  • How Many Credit Scores Do I Have?

    Often we hear from our clients that they checked their credit score through a free site such as Credit Karma and were shown a high credit score but...

  • Getting out of Debt in 2017

    Getting out of Debt in 2017
    The holidays have come and gone.  This time of year is a great time to think about goals for the new year. Make the com...

  • IRS Phone Scams

    There are a number of different phone scams that are currently going on, including people claiming to be the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  These types of scams are normally very sophisticated and convincing.  The scammer claiming to be from the IRS will know your name, possibly be able to recite the last four digits of your Social Security Number and may know other personal information.  The scammer can even spoof the caller id to make the call appear to be coming from the IRS. 
    With this kind of scam, the person claiming to be an IRS agent will claim that you owe back taxes and that you need to make a payment.  If you refuse or ask too many questions, the scammer may become very aggressive and threaten their victims with jail time, lawsuits or even to revoke your driver’s license.  On the flip side, the scammer can also say you are due a refund to gain banking information.  There are a few ways to know if the call is a scam.
                The IRS will never:

    Demand payment over the phone or ask for any type banking information: this could include prepaid debit cards, checking or savings account information, credit card numbers or for a wire transfer

    Ask for detailed personal information: This includes requests for PIN numbers and passwords, or access information for credit cards, banks or other financial accounts

    Reach out to anyone via email: - If you do receive an email, do not reply, open any attachments, or click any links. Forward the email as-is to the IRS at

    If you receive a call from a person claiming to be from the IRS, take down the individual's name and badge number.   You can then call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 and verify that you’ve received a legitimate call. If you do find that the call you received is a scam you can report it to:
    Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484 or
    online with the Federal Trade Commission at

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