August 20, 2020
To A Better Financial Plan Employees:
I understand that many of you are concerned and confused about the status of ABetterFinancialPlan.com LLC d/b/a A Better Financial Plan, ABFP Management Company, LLC, and various ABFP funds that invested in Complete Business Solutions Group, Inc. d/b/a Par Funding (the “ABFP Companies”), the outstanding payroll, and your future prospects at the ABFP Companies. Although I was very recently appointed as the Receiver of the ABFP Companies, and cannot yet answer all of your questions, I am writing you now to establish a line of communication, to advise you of important court orders by U.S. District Court Judge Rodolfo Ruiz, to explain my role as a receiver, and to address concerns that many of you have raised. We will continue to update you with letters, and by posting information to our website: ParFundingReceivership.com.
Of the utmost importance to you, the Amended Order Appointing Receiver, issued by Judge Ruiz on August 13, 2020 (linked below), terminated your employment with the ABFP Companies, effective as of the evening of Thursday, August 13, 2020. See Amended Order Appointing Receiver at ¶ 5, attached hereto. While I understand that this may be difficult, as explained below, it is not unusual for the district court to enter an order terminating employees at the outset of the Receivership, and we are currently evaluating opportunities regarding the future operations of the ABFP Companies.
Regarding the role of a receiver, generally speaking, a receiver is an individual who assumes responsibility for all assets of the entities in receivership in the civil enforcement action brought by the Securities & Exchange Commission (“SEC”). A receiver is responsible for determining how the business was operated and where its assets are located. A receiver is charged with operating the business if feasible and reporting to investors and other interested parties. Ultimately, the Receiver will determine the amounts owed to individual creditors and investors and will distribute available assets in accordance with a plan approved by the Court. A receiver is an officer of the court, not an employee of the SEC, and ultimately answers to the court.
The Court’s orders govern the authority of the Receiver. Federal courts have specific powers, known as “equitable” authority, to order relief to advance the purposes of the federal securities laws, to preserve investor funds, and to ensure that wrongdoers do not profit from their unlawful conduct. Courts typically grant broad powers to receivers, including the authority to sue on behalf of the receivership and to gather, manage and liquidate receivership assets on behalf of potential creditors and harmed investors. A receiver is charged with acting in “good faith” and performing his duties with “reasonable diligence.” A receiver is generally required to account to the court periodically for the property entrusted to him.
As to the current matter, this lawsuit began when the SEC filed a Complaint on July 24, 2020, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida (the “Court”) against Complete Business Solutions Group, Inc. d/b/a Par Funding; Full Spectrum Processing, Inc.; ABetterFinancialPlan.com LLC d/b/a A Better Financial Plan; and various other individuals and entities (collectively, the “Receivership Entities”). The SEC also filed an Emergency Ex Parte Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order (link) and Motion to Appoint a Receiver (link).
The Court entered, among other orders, an Order Granting the SEC’s Motion for Appointment of Receiver on July 27, 2020 (link) and an Amended Order Appointing Receiver on August 13, 2020 (the “Amended Receivership Order”) (link). Those orders, which I encourage you to read, detail all of my duties and responsibilities over the Receivership Entities (as defined in the Amended Receivership Order). More information about the Receivership Entities is available on the Receiver’s website, which is available at ParFundingReceivership.com.
The Court’s Orders provide me the opportunity, along with the highly trained professionals I have engaged, to gather and preserve the ABFP Companies’ data, to ascertain their financial status, and to evaluate their operations. We would like to speak with all former employees of the ABFP Companies, on an individual basis, for the purpose of discussing your role with the ABFP Companies. Accordingly, I ask that you provide your current contact information and availability for an in-person or virtual/Zoom meeting to my counsel, Timothy A. Kolaya at email@example.com and Gaetan J. Alfano at GJA@pietragallo.com, at your earliest convenience. Please provide your preferred personal email address and mobile phone number, if possible, so that we have the best contact information for ongoing communications with you.
Under the circumstances, you may be eligible for state unemployment compensation. Please contact your local unemployment office for information on eligibility and applying for unemployment benefits. I will provide you additional information responsive to questions regarding pay and benefits as soon as that information is available.
Yours very truly,
Ryan K. Stumphauzer, Esq.
(A PDF copy of this letter is available here).