Founder, Mark Silverthorn

Melanie Wengle

Partner, B.A., LL.B.

Licensed Insolvency Trustee

A. Farber & Partners Inc.

Over the past two years a member of the public could find a website promoting Prudent Debt Consulting at the URL prudentdebt.homestead.com/

November 6, 2015 telephone interview with Alan Farber

Michael Cox's resume

  • 26:17

Documents provided by Michael Cox to mystery shopper Jessica Grant on October 9, 2015


During this October 9, 2015 meeting Michael Cox provided the mystery shopper with the following three documents:

Interview Form printed on A. Farber & Partners Inc. letterhead

Michael Cox's LinkedIn Profile on October 9, 2015

This screenshot of the homepage for the website for Prudent Debt Consulting, captured in October of 2017, is virtually identical to the homepage appearing on the firm's website over the past two years.

  • his business card
  • his resume
  • a lengthy document titled "R PLAN REVIEW  INTERVIEW FORM       which contained the name of A. Farber & Partners Inc.

You can listen to my November 6, 2015 telephone interview at which time I raised concerns about A. Farber & Partners Inc.'s dealing with a Burlington, Ontario-based debt consultant Michael Cox.

Melanie Wengle's letter dated November 9, 2015 

Alan Farber is the Founder and Joint Managing Partner of Farber Financial Group, an organization which may have have as many as a dozen different business entities.

December 2, 2015 meeting with Michael Cox of Prudent Debt Consulting at his residence in Burlington, Ontario

Prudent Debt Consulting

As noted earlier on this webpage, a mystery shopper using the pseudonym "Jessica Grant", met with Michael Cox, Senior Advisor, Prudent Debt Consulting, at a restaurant in Hamilton, Ontario, on October 9, 2015.


Mystery shopper "Jessica Grant" had a second mystery shopping encounter with Michael Cox on December 2, 2015 at Michael Cox's residence in Burlington, Ontario.


You can watch video footage taken by this mystery shopper on the evening of December 2, 2015 using a hidden miniature video camera.


By Mark Silverthorn

Founder, Comprehensive Debt Solutions

During their October 9, 2015 meeting Michael Cox provided mystery shopper Jessica Grant with is three-page resume (See below)

dates--October 9, 2015 and December 2, 2015 a mystery shopper met with Michael Cox, Senior Advisor, Prudent Debt Consulting, at which time she obtained video footage of these meetings using a hidden miniature video camera.  During these encounters the mystery shopper used the fictitious name or pseudonym "Jessica Grant".


The video footage for the October 9, 2015 mystery shopping encounter can be found halfway down this webpage while the video footage for the December 2, 2015 mystery shopping encounter can be found at the very bottom of this webpage.

My fee is payable in cash ... I always get cash ...


Michael Cox

Senior Advisor, Prudent Debt Consulting


October 9, 2015

On the evening of October 9, 2015 Michael Cox gave mystery shopper Jessica Grant his business card (see below).

On November 6, 2015 I arranged a telephone interview with Alan Farber, Founder and Joint Managing Partner, Farber Financial Group.  One of the many business units of Farber Financial Group is Farber & Partners Inc.  On Noveber 6, 2015 trustees used the designation "bankruptcy trustees".  As of April 1, 2016 the designation "bankruptcy trustees" was changed to "Licensed Insolvency Trustees" or "LIT".


At the beginning of this phone call Alan Farber expressly consented to having this phone call recorded.  One of the issues that I raised during this 26-minute telephone interview was my concerns about the conduct of Michael Cox, a Burlington, Ontario-based debt consultant and his dealings with two members of A. Farber & Partners Inc.'s organization, Chad Zizzo, a Debt Solutions Manager, and Graeme Whithead, bankruptcy trustee.

Prudent Debt Consulting's website homepage over the past 2 years

October 9, 2015 meeting with Michael Cox of Prudent Debt Consulting in a Hamilton, Ontario restaurant

On November 9, 2015, three days after my 26-minute telephone interview with Alan Farber of A. Farber & Partners Inc., on November 6th, I received a letter from Ms. Melanie Wengle a trustee at the firm who is also a lawyer.


The letter is reproduced below.  In her letter Ms. Wengle states that Alan Farber will not be having a follow up telephone call with my on November 9, 2015.

On October 9, 2015, the date of mystery shopper Jessica Grant's first meeting with Michael Cox, Senior Advisor, Prudent Debt Consulting, we captured a screenshot of Michael Cox's LinkedIn Profile.  This screenshot can be found immediately to the right of this column.


In this LinkedIn Profile Michael Cox describes himself as a Farber Financing Specialist with Farber Financial Group from October 2012 to Present.


In my 26-minute telephone interview with Alan Farber, Founder and Joint Managing Partner of Farber Financial Group, I informed Alan Farber about the LinkedIn Profile of Michael Cox on the date he met with a mystery shopper (October 29, 2015)


I subsequently received a letter dated November 9, 2015 from Ms. Melanie Wengle--a lawyer and a trustee with A. Farber & Partners Inc.--informing me that the firm had sent a letter to Michael Cox demanding that he cease and desist from using the Farber logo.

On October 9, 2015 Michael Cox informed mystery shopper Jessica Grant that if she wanted to hire Michael Cox then his fees would fee $700.00 "payable in cash".

This screenshot was taken in October of 2015, a few days prior to a mystery shopper meeting with Michael Cox, Senior Advisor, Prudent Debt Consulting.

On the evening of October 9, 2015 a mystery shopper using the pseudonym "Jessica Grant" met with Michael Cox, Senior Advisor, Prudent Debt Consulting at a restaurant in Hamilton, Ontario.  This mystery shopper captured this encounter on video using a hidden miniature video camera.

During their October 9, 2015 meeting Michael Cox of Prudent Debt Consulting, gave mystery shopper "Jessica Grant" a multi-page INTERVIEW FORM, apparently printed on the letterhead of A. Farber & Partners Inc.

Michael Cox's fees for his firm's services

The red circle appearing on this business card has been added.

On November 6, 2015, I had a telephone conversation with Alan Farber, Founder and Joint Managing Partner, Farber Financial Group.  One of the companies which is part of the Farber Financial Group is Farber & Parnters Inc., Bankruptcy Trustees, one of the largest firms of bankruptcy trustees in Ontario--with about 50 offices.

One can only wonder if the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is aware of Prudent Debt Consulting's billing practices.

Michael Cox's business card

In the summer of 2015 Comprehensive Debt Solutions began a 2-year investigation into the marketing practices of Licensed Insolvency Trustees--known as bankruptcy trustees prior to April 1, 2016--operating in southern Ontario.  As part of this investigation mystery shoppers--armed with hidden video cameras--met with debt consultants who appeared to refer insolvency files--individuals contemplating a consumer proposal or personal bankruptcy--to one firm of bankruptcy trustees.


One of the debt consulting firms we randomly chose to mystery shop was Burlington, Ontario-based Prudent Debt Consulting.  On two