• Report: #279334

Complaint Review: AP Financial, AEGON

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  • Submitted: Wed, October 17, 2007
  • Updated: Sat, March 14, 2009

  • Reported By:orlando Florida
AP Financial, AEGON
Greenwood Blvd Lake Mary, Florida U.S.A.

AP Financial, AEGON pyramid scam, fake financial advisors Lake Mary nationwide

*Consumer Comment: Hiring Teens at Target?

*Consumer Comment: To Better Than Vault

*Consumer Comment: You really should have left after the first interview.

*Consumer Comment: You really should have left after the first interview.

*UPDATE Employee: Aegon employee

*Consumer Suggestion: monkeys wearing suits

*Consumer Comment: Face facts and drop the "party line."

*UPDATE Employee: Key word is Oppurtunity

*Consumer Comment: Stop playing "lawyer games."

*Consumer Comment: Stop playing "lawyer games."

*Consumer Comment: Stop playing "lawyer games."

*Consumer Comment: Stop playing "lawyer games."

*Consumer Suggestion: Where's your ethics, Advisor19?

*Consumer Comment: Steer Clear of this Company!

*Consumer Comment: All "new" insurance agents are "started out" by selling to their warm market, i.e. family & friends

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: How am I wrong?

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Wee Man is wrong yet again

*UPDATE Employee: OVER DOING IT

*UPDATE Employee: OVER DOING IT

*UPDATE Employee: OVER DOING IT

*UPDATE Employee: OVER DOING IT

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Right on!

*Consumer Suggestion: Looking at the right reports

*Consumer Suggestion: lets get our terminology straight!

*Consumer Suggestion: lets get our terminology straight!

*Consumer Suggestion: lets get our terminology straight!

*Author of original report: this is getting out of hand

*Author of original report: this is getting out of hand

*UPDATE Employee: Worked with this individual

*Author of original report: lack of education?

*Consumer Comment: lack of education

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Recently, I was almost sucked into a company called AP Financial. They are owned by a company called AEGON. AEGON also owned WMA, a company that was investigated in the past for doing what AP Financial is doing now.

I was contacted by someone from AP Financial via email after they found my resume online. The email was from the executive director of the Orlando branch. It said she was very busy and would love to interview me but the only time she had available was tuesday at 10am. I responded and told her I'd be there. When I showed up on tuesday it was like an open house. There were approximately 30 other people in the office who had received the same exact email. They sat us down for an information session and then broke off into individual interviews.

I don't want to drag on about this, but I should've known from the start they were not trustworthy when they even lied about the very first interview.

I interviewed, then was invited back for a second interview, and was eventually offered the job. They require that you pay for your own licensing with the promise that you will be reimbursed after you're with the company for a certain length of time.

What's very unsettling is that while you are getting your licenses, they require that you set 7 appointments with potential clients from your natural market (family and friends) and your mentor, who is an experienced advisor in the company. When I was hired there were about 5 advisors/mentors for the 30 new recruits. The first appointment, however, is just you and your mentor. At this appointment your mentor sells you a variable life insurance policy (VUL). Then at every other appointment you set, your mentor tries to sell each of your family members and friends a VUL. Keep in mind, you're doing this while you are getting licensed, and since you're not licensed you don't get a penny of the commission. Your mentor gets it all. A VUL is a very expensive policy that is next to impossible to back out of for many years. It is a great investment tool, but not for everyone. The so called advisors at AP Financial recommend VULs to everyone they see, seemingly regardless of suitability.

The apparent goal is to hire about 30 people each month, require those 30 people to set 7 appointments, and sell VULs to approximately 210 people(30x7). Now as I said earlier, there were about 5 mentors, that means each mentor just picked up 42 potential new clients. Most people don't make it through the training. By the end of my first month there, there were roughly 5 recruits left from the 30 i started with. Some drop out because they discover it's a scam, others decide the industry just isn't for them, and many don't make it through training because they don't pass their licensing exams. But how could they pass their licensing exams when instead of studying, their too busy bringing in clients to just hand over to their mentor? The advisors at the company don't care though, because they've already made huge commissions off of your family and friends, who are now locked into VULs that they can't get out of unless they want to pay huge penalties.

I realized the scam when i noticed 30 brand new faces at the beginning of the second month I was there.

I'm not sure if the 'advisors' there even prospect or try and get any of their own clients. They could easily make a six figure income just by 'hiring' another batch of 30 people each month, then having those 30 people bring their family and friends into the office, and selling them VULs.

Just incase anyone is wondering about my credibility, or if you should listen to what I have to say, I'll say this; First, I am embarrassed that I spent a month at this company before I realized what was going on. I have a bachelors degree in economics from a major university, and I am currently a financial advisor with one of the largest financial firms in the world. A company which I wont name, but is listed on the fortune and global 500 lists. This company hired me along with 1 other person, and helped us get our licenses before we were required to make any sales or set any appointments. So when we finally did set appointments and make sales, we actually received the commissions. This is how a legit financial firm should be! Hiring in small numbers so that you can actually make sure the recruits become advisors. AP Financial doesn't care if you become an advisor, they only care if you bring in your 7 new clients.

I was suckered in by AP Financial because of their promises of vast wealth and rapid advancement. Now I see the reason they advance so rapidly. Instead of making any cold calls, they just hire 30 people, prey on the friends and family of those 30 (anyone in sales knows a warm lead is almost a guaranteed close, whereas a cold call is anything but) and then really don't care if any of those 30 actually make it through the training, get licensed and become advisors. Your mentor already has a ton of new clients and all of the commissions.

What AP Financial is doing in NOT illegal, just incredibly immoral and unethical. Be careful if you're looking to get into financial sales and they contact you.

Please respond if you've had a run in with this company.

Thanks.

anonymous
orlando, Florida
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/17/2007 01:32 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/AP-Financial-AEGON/Lake-Mary-Florida/AP-Financial-AEGON-pyramid-scam-fake-financial-advisors-Lake-Mary-nationwide-279334. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

Hiring Teens at Target?

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (United States of America)

I was shopping at Target tonight, when I was approached by a lady by the name of Mary Jean.  She asked me if I or anyone I knew needed a job, part time or full time, because she was looking for financial advisors.  I said no, and she again asked me if I was looking for a part time job.  I said yes, but I wouldn't be able to do anything until after college applications were done. I'm a 17-year-old senior in high school, and I told her so.

She then proceeded to ask if any of my relatives needed a job, and I (being too trusting) said that my uncle had just been laid off, but that he was probably not what she was looking for because he's an engineer.  She responded by saying that they have many engineers, doctors, all sorts of varied professions, in her company.  She then gave me her number and told me to have my uncle call her.

She's a small Vietnamese woman who called herself Mary Jean.  The number she gave me is (408) 823-0770.
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#2 Consumer Comment

To Better Than Vault

AUTHOR: Newfenoix - (U.S.A.)

Thanks for telling the truth. The thing that pisses me off about people like AP is that they use that "manager trainee" line to lure unsuspecting people into these interviews. Since you have been through one of these BS sessions you know that the job has NOTHING to do with management.

And contrary to what some have posted here, the group that I was with WAS told to bring family, friends, church members, etc., in as prospective clients. Like I said earlier, there is nothing wrong with sales positions, just tell the truth.
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#3 Consumer Comment

You really should have left after the first interview.

AUTHOR: Better Than Vault? - (U.S.A.)

I went to one of those mass interviews a year back or so. I kind of knew it was not a legit advising company, but just went for fun. After hearing "838 plan" or something alike, it gave me a clear picture of what they are doing. It was basically a fency way for them to tell us that we need to pay for our own licensing fees.

During the private interview, the interviewer, who by the way was young as I was or even younger (I was 22, I think), asked three or less questions and one of the last questions was regarding to "the plan". He wanted to know whether I am "okay" with it. Knowing fully well that I would not be called back if I tell them no, I simply said "NO". Not too surprising to my end, the interview ended after the "plan" question and he gave me an unsettling "We'll call you back to let you know about the result". I came out thinking, "Why did I dress up?"

I think there are many things to look at when dealing with this kind of situation.

Like many, as I guessed when I walked into the big conference room, I hoped to jump start my career after coming out college, or for a few it seemed they wanted to find a better opportunity that may have unlimited potential.

(--Oh.. almost forgot, AP Financial wants their newly recruits to be "unlicensed"!! Logically, it did not make sense. They said that they want people who have clear background where they do not bring in old habits. Old habits? Hmmm... like smoking? However it may be, if they want to recruit and start selling their products, why would they prefer unlicensed over licensed?--)

Yes, AP Financial did sound exactly that when I found the job postings from Monster.com, Careerbuilder.com, and others. My first impression was a mix of doubts and hopes. When I read it and looked over the website, I figured it was another Pyramid Scam. Unfortunately, I had several contacts with these kind of people. Well, I should first define "my definition" of "Pyramid Scam". In a partial definition, to me it is a Pyramid Scam when someone or an entity tries to lure in many people as possible to a company for a promise of unimaginable payoffs. However, this promise is sorely based on things such as "profit sharing (not like the ones that managements get)" or/and "unreasonable commitments". With that, these companies tend to say less about their own companies and bring in big household third party companies to fill their discussions.

When this happens, a personal can read and find it reasonable and wants to give it a shot. And so s/he does and finds that it is not what it seems as the "process" of obtaining the wealth they discussed is based on deceptions. I say deceptions, because the fact that this type of companies never fully explain what they are doing and only thing they will concentrate on is "payoffs"!! Also, they tend to sell other companies products, and only.

When I sat in the conference room, all I heard from the management guy was "we are growing and making money". NEVER ONCE HE TALKED OF HOW THEY GET THEIR BUSINESS RUNNING, WHERE THEY GET CLIENTS, AND HOW WE WILL BE FIT INTO THE SYSTEM. Sad to say, but I have been to more than two dozens of interviews and all of them were eager to talk to me about their company and give me a sense of what my resposibility must be. I never got that from the management guy of AP Financial.

After saying all that, I have to say that Pyramid business is still legal or less it is not a Scam. Mary Kay, for instance, is a form of Pyramid business. However, they do not mislead you or even mass advertise to recruit people. They have their own products and they find it much suitable when part time mothers or women in general go out there and sell their products. Yes, their first instinct is to sell their products to family members, but no one is making them to do that.

However it may be, an advising firm such as Edward Jones is the same as AP Financial, yet they are very transparent. Unlike AP Financial, Ed Jones wants you to get licenses then gather appointments. Now, since it is similar to contract jobs, you have to do whatever you can to gather people and they help you to do that, such as providing you with a call list. Eventually, when you have enough people on you list, they will open your own office and everything is paid full. You could say that this is a pyramid scam, but you know for fact that they don't require you to bring in family members or make you pay for your own licensing.

If you work as broker or advisor, you know for fact that brokerage comapanies do not want to just let you take the license exam when you get hired. If they do, it means they will have to pay for it and if passed, they will have an unseasoned fully licensed broker or advisor who is useless. This is called "internship" time. Many brokerage put you into a smaller role position in the begining to see if you make it out. A year or so, they will know whether you can become a broker or advisor, also you will know it as well. They are very transparent about that.

Even in insurance industries, they are clear about what type of role you must play. If in sales position, you are given clear understanding of how to get clients and how you will be compensated. In AP Financial, I doubt they tell you that as you go along. Yes, AIG, Hartford, AllState, and countless others hire insurance brokers and they are clear about what brokers do. This is why people do not run off to become a broker since people know how hard it is to survive in this industry. AP Financial, it seemed to me, they never wanted to tell me how hard or even mention a small detail of how to get clients. It was almost evident that they were shading this area.

So, there you have it.

If you read/hear an ad that promise you $$, it probably is true, but with strings attached to it.

If you see a mass ad of same position, then you know for fact that they are to get you.

If a company does not tell you a small detail about how they run their business and keep everything vague, then you know something is up.

Try to find a quality job, not big bang jobs that tell you $$ will be there waiting.

However, if you are willing to, in a way, scam (unethically do business) others and want to climb on such latter, then AP Financial may be the answer for you.

Cheers to all the Pyramids
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#4 Consumer Comment

You really should have left after the first interview.

AUTHOR: Better Than Vault? - (U.S.A.)

I went to one of those mass interviews a year back or so. I kind of knew it was not a legit advising company, but just went for fun. After hearing "838 plan" or something alike, it gave me a clear picture of what they are doing. It was basically a fency way for them to tell us that we need to pay for our own licensing fees.

During the private interview, the interviewer, who by the way was young as I was or even younger (I was 22, I think), asked three or less questions and one of the last questions was regarding to "the plan". He wanted to know whether I am "okay" with it. Knowing fully well that I would not be called back if I tell them no, I simply said "NO". Not too surprising to my end, the interview ended after the "plan" question and he gave me an unsettling "We'll call you back to let you know about the result". I came out thinking, "Why did I dress up?"

I think there are many things to look at when dealing with this kind of situation.

Like many, as I guessed when I walked into the big conference room, I hoped to jump start my career after coming out college, or for a few it seemed they wanted to find a better opportunity that may have unlimited potential.

(--Oh.. almost forgot, AP Financial wants their newly recruits to be "unlicensed"!! Logically, it did not make sense. They said that they want people who have clear background where they do not bring in old habits. Old habits? Hmmm... like smoking? However it may be, if they want to recruit and start selling their products, why would they prefer unlicensed over licensed?--)

Yes, AP Financial did sound exactly that when I found the job postings from Monster.com, Careerbuilder.com, and others. My first impression was a mix of doubts and hopes. When I read it and looked over the website, I figured it was another Pyramid Scam. Unfortunately, I had several contacts with these kind of people. Well, I should first define "my definition" of "Pyramid Scam". In a partial definition, to me it is a Pyramid Scam when someone or an entity tries to lure in many people as possible to a company for a promise of unimaginable payoffs. However, this promise is sorely based on things such as "profit sharing (not like the ones that managements get)" or/and "unreasonable commitments". With that, these companies tend to say less about their own companies and bring in big household third party companies to fill their discussions.

When this happens, a personal can read and find it reasonable and wants to give it a shot. And so s/he does and finds that it is not what it seems as the "process" of obtaining the wealth they discussed is based on deceptions. I say deceptions, because the fact that this type of companies never fully explain what they are doing and only thing they will concentrate on is "payoffs"!! Also, they tend to sell other companies products, and only.

When I sat in the conference room, all I heard from the management guy was "we are growing and making money". NEVER ONCE HE TALKED OF HOW THEY GET THEIR BUSINESS RUNNING, WHERE THEY GET CLIENTS, AND HOW WE WILL BE FIT INTO THE SYSTEM. Sad to say, but I have been to more than two dozens of interviews and all of them were eager to talk to me about their company and give me a sense of what my resposibility must be. I never got that from the management guy of AP Financial.

After saying all that, I have to say that Pyramid business is still legal or less it is not a Scam. Mary Kay, for instance, is a form of Pyramid business. However, they do not mislead you or even mass advertise to recruit people. They have their own products and they find it much suitable when part time mothers or women in general go out there and sell their products. Yes, their first instinct is to sell their products to family members, but no one is making them to do that.

However it may be, an advising firm such as Edward Jones is the same as AP Financial, yet they are very transparent. Unlike AP Financial, Ed Jones wants you to get licenses then gather appointments. Now, since it is similar to contract jobs, you have to do whatever you can to gather people and they help you to do that, such as providing you with a call list. Eventually, when you have enough people on you list, they will open your own office and everything is paid full. You could say that this is a pyramid scam, but you know for fact that they don't require you to bring in family members or make you pay for your own licensing.

If you work as broker or advisor, you know for fact that brokerage comapanies do not want to just let you take the license exam when you get hired. If they do, it means they will have to pay for it and if passed, they will have an unseasoned fully licensed broker or advisor who is useless. This is called "internship" time. Many brokerage put you into a smaller role position in the begining to see if you make it out. A year or so, they will know whether you can become a broker or advisor, also you will know it as well. They are very transparent about that.

Even in insurance industries, they are clear about what type of role you must play. If in sales position, you are given clear understanding of how to get clients and how you will be compensated. In AP Financial, I doubt they tell you that as you go along. Yes, AIG, Hartford, AllState, and countless others hire insurance brokers and they are clear about what brokers do. This is why people do not run off to become a broker since people know how hard it is to survive in this industry. AP Financial, it seemed to me, they never wanted to tell me how hard or even mention a small detail of how to get clients. It was almost evident that they were shading this area.

So, there you have it.

If you read/hear an ad that promise you $$, it probably is true, but with strings attached to it.

If you see a mass ad of same position, then you know for fact that they are to get you.

If a company does not tell you a small detail about how they run their business and keep everything vague, then you know something is up.

Try to find a quality job, not big bang jobs that tell you $$ will be there waiting.

However, if you are willing to, in a way, scam (unethically do business) others and want to climb on such latter, then AP Financial may be the answer for you.

Cheers to all the Pyramids
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#5 UPDATE Employee

Aegon employee

AUTHOR: Number1raysfan - (U.S.A.)

I read with interest the comments offered on AP Financial because I am an employee of Aegon. AP Financial and Aegon are separate companies/organizations and Aegon does not own AP Financial, rather AP Financial is an independent sales organization that has a relationship w/ Aegon to sell Aegon products including TransAmerica mutual funds, WRL insurance products, and securities through InterSecurities (ISI).

I work for InterSecurities (ISI), a securities broker/dealer that is apart of Aegon, and therefore holds the securities licenses, processes paperwork, and pays the commissions for AP Financial reps. Look at it like an Allstate Insurance office, while the office offers Allstate insurance products, that office is independent of the Allstate Insurance company and Allstate has no direct involvement in how its independent agents handle and conduct day to day business, for the most part.

The above being said and after reading many of the posts on this site, I wouldn't work for AP Financial. I don't have direct knowledge of any wrongdoing by AP and can attest to the above board and ethical standards of Aegon, but throughout my years of employment at ISI, I've always been uncomfortable with our relationship with AP. In terms of production, AP is among the top producers for VUL and VA business at ISI and it is common knowledge around ISI that most of us know that AP reps push mainly VUL/VA products. Personally, it's not often to see a commission paid out on a product other than a VUL/VA so that would seem to resonate with the posts of others who say they hit up new trainees' families and friends for VUL/VA sales.

When a rep leaves a firm or "terms," their accounts are generally assigned to a branch manager or another rep who begins picking up the trailing commissions. Of course you can't receive commissions if you aren't licensed, which works fine for the actual reps who are licensed at AP because they can pick up on the commissions and trails of the products the trainee is helping to sell. Please note that nothing AP is doing is illegal to my knowledge, but unethical, in my opinion, yes. I don't agree with the way they do business based on the posts that I have read on this and other sites. It seems to support why AP reps/trainees term at a high rate. If it is true from the posts I've read of groups being hired at once and selling 5 to 7 family and friends, while receiving no commission all the while those at the top know most of those new trainees won't be around to actually get the licenses is opportunistic, unethical, but not illegal. It may be how they choose to do business but a scam, AP Financial is not a scam. I personally would think carefully before taking a position with AP Financial or any firm with a rep position because several will hire anyone, use them for the leads, and than for whatever reason, the person fails to last more than a year or to even get their license.
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#6 Consumer Suggestion

monkeys wearing suits

AUTHOR: Fabio - (U.S.A.)

Ever since i got my resume up on CareerBuilder.com i went through more of these scams in the past 12 months than i ever did in my life.

The last poor soul that tried to lure me in phoned me tonight. He said he found my resume and he's interested in having me for an interview. I tell him i'm listening. He says it's a financial corporation. Then he asked me if i ever heard the name Aegon. I lie and say "No... never heard of them". I live in Australia for 4 years of my life and just felt like messing around with this guy.
He starts this prepared speech about how the company is so d**n rich and powerful, and how they bought the TransAmerica Building in SF, and all the rest of the story. I nod over the phone like a 6yo, i'm so bored up to that point. I have to leave to go fax a resume to this company that pays 2 grand for a guy working in a warehouse 6 days a week. I am NOT about to miss THAT opportunity, i tell you that.
So at some point i have to cut it short and ask him: "do you know what i do? Did you even read my resume? Do i look like a manager to you?"
So he goes on like a freaking robot, telling me how this opportunity helps families survive in this bad economy. After five minutes i counted the phrase "bad economy" at least 12 times. Then he just kept on repeating himself.
I needed to end that. So i said "Ok... let's talk about wages. Is this full time... part time... COMMISSION BASED???" I was smiling from ear to ear at myself.

"Of course..." he says "We have full time and part time positions" Sure... So i asked him what he means by full time. When i asked him what kind of salary i'd be looking at i almost fell off my chair. "Any salary you want! It depends of how hard you are willing to work... and....and....and...."... and right there it was Kirby, Amway, Herbalife and Network21 all over again. I made a point to pack as much rage in the last minute of our conversation as possible. I'm going to be screwed if i don't find a stable job by January. I had to vent.

Well this was my experience. One of the many. The recurring thing these guys will ALWAYS tell you is that their "business" is "recession proof", that you can make as much as you want, that your life will change. They are all out there, promising you opportunities that will stand the test of this bad economy we are having. They will show you pictures of fast cars and expensive houses.
Well they are pictures. Nothing else. So ok, they will even SHOW you the real deal. From outside, and seriously... how much money does it cost to rent a Ferrari for a couple of hours? SEE through the scam. That's why you are here on the Ripoff Report.

Well let me tell you this: the only thing that is recession proof is your will to put yourself out there. There is no shortcut, or fast lane to get rich.
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#7 Consumer Comment

Face facts and drop the "party line."

AUTHOR: Newfenoix - (U.S.A.)

To all of the AP shills reporting here...stop with the BS!!! AP is a sales company plain and simple. And there is nothing wrong with that. BUT, stop with this crap of calling people lazy when they say that it is not for them.

As I said in my earlier post, I was called in for a "manager trainee" position interview. But that is not what the position was. And by the way, as a manager with several years of experience under my belt, I take PERSONAL OFFENSE when I am called lazy. You can't be an effective manager when you are lazy. Managers work for salary and most have a bonus system that gives them part of the profits of the store that they manage.

In these weird economic times, people need guaranteed income and you don't have that when you are in sales. I don't care HOW HARD you work. And, good managers ALWAYS have a job waiting!
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#8 UPDATE Employee

Key word is Oppurtunity

AUTHOR: Cust Serv - (U.S.A.)

First off, I am currently an employee of AP Financial. Secondly, Aegon is a massive insurance and financial services company. They own Western Reserve Life of Ohio, whose products are carriered by the "big boys" in financial services.

Many insurance companies hire people fresh out of college; sell policies to their families and give them no training and they fail. This is not the AP Financial I know; we train and practice daily.

As far as the VA and VUL thing; that is a complete misstatement. AP Financial reps have access to dozens of products from hundreds of companies. Lazy people try to make VUL and VA stick to everyone. Be an adult and find out what you have access too.

Here are some of the products AP Financial reps write:
Variable Annuities. Variable Universal Life, Term Life, Roth IRA, Traditional IRA, group life, straight mutual funds, 529's etc etc.

You can also pick which vendors you want to write policies and programs for, as long as they are on the Broker/Dealers approved product list. AP Financial's broker dealer has an extensive list.

You like the Hartford Life? AIG? Mass Mututal? Get appointed, get sales kits and start learning the features and selling. Big fan of Fidelity? Prefer Oppenheimer? Choose any number of mututal fund companies for IRA's, 529's and straight funds.

They cannot train you on every product/company; but they do train you EXTENSIVE on a few. Most of that knowledge carries over to similar products.

This company provides tools for success. They make no qualms about it being a tough business with high turn over. They give you training, mentoring and hold your hand through the whole process. The more effort you put in, the more they help and reward.

Also, once you prove you got what it takes; the training clients become YOUR clients. You get the residuals. Any house accounts you service face to face, they become YOUR client and you get the residuals.

Some people need safety and guarantees because they have no confidence in their abilties to succeed. This company is not for them.

Congrats on getting hired at a big company; look around the office; odds are most of the new people won't be there 2-3 year from now(once their training pay stops).
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#9 Consumer Comment

Stop playing "lawyer games."

AUTHOR: Newfenoix - (U.S.A.)

In March of 2008, I went to one of these "cattle call" interviews at the Dallas office. I was very unimpressed. I was supposed to be interviewed for a "manager position." I would assume that the other 15 people in the conference room were there for the same reason.

Now, I have a degree in management and have over 15 years of experience in different level of management. I am aware of what it takes to be a successful manager. I am also aware of what a company looks for when they interview prospective managers. I saw none of that during this circus. But, I stuck around because of shear, morbid curiosity.

The "head man" made his pitch and it became clear that this was a sales job, and a poor one at that. I have seen several sales companies use the "manager trainee" ad to lure in victims. Sales people are not "manager trainees." And this is the main problem with the way AP Financial does business.

AP Financial IS NOT looking for managers OR financial professionals. They are looking for sales people, plain and simple. It is true that this company has no negative BBB reports against them. But that does not mean that this is a good company. By advertising for "manager trainees" they are at best being misleading and at worst, lying.

I actually went to the second interview and was "hired." But when I asked serious questions about pay, benefits, responsibilities, etc., etc., I was told that all of that stuff would be revealed as the "training" progressed. "Training" consisted of sitting in a conference room listening to this kid rattle on about annuities and variable life policies. I learned more about this stuff in college!

Well, I brought my wife in to buy a variable life policy. And that is where the truth came out. They insisted that we pay with a check and then have a monthly debit set up. We refused. I told them that we would pay with a money order ONLY. They refused to accept the money order. We left. Two days later, I received a phone call from the office director. He told me that they had decided that I was not a good "fit" for the company.

In short, AP Financial just might be a decent company to buy annuities from. But, they are very misleading in how they hire people. As I said before, sales people are not managers. Companies like AP and most other sales companies really need to understand what a "manager" is and what they do. I can tell you this, they don't work on commission.
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#10 Consumer Comment

Stop playing "lawyer games."

AUTHOR: Newfenoix - (U.S.A.)

In March of 2008, I went to one of these "cattle call" interviews at the Dallas office. I was very unimpressed. I was supposed to be interviewed for a "manager position." I would assume that the other 15 people in the conference room were there for the same reason.

Now, I have a degree in management and have over 15 years of experience in different level of management. I am aware of what it takes to be a successful manager. I am also aware of what a company looks for when they interview prospective managers. I saw none of that during this circus. But, I stuck around because of shear, morbid curiosity.

The "head man" made his pitch and it became clear that this was a sales job, and a poor one at that. I have seen several sales companies use the "manager trainee" ad to lure in victims. Sales people are not "manager trainees." And this is the main problem with the way AP Financial does business.

AP Financial IS NOT looking for managers OR financial professionals. They are looking for sales people, plain and simple. It is true that this company has no negative BBB reports against them. But that does not mean that this is a good company. By advertising for "manager trainees" they are at best being misleading and at worst, lying.

I actually went to the second interview and was "hired." But when I asked serious questions about pay, benefits, responsibilities, etc., etc., I was told that all of that stuff would be revealed as the "training" progressed. "Training" consisted of sitting in a conference room listening to this kid rattle on about annuities and variable life policies. I learned more about this stuff in college!

Well, I brought my wife in to buy a variable life policy. And that is where the truth came out. They insisted that we pay with a check and then have a monthly debit set up. We refused. I told them that we would pay with a money order ONLY. They refused to accept the money order. We left. Two days later, I received a phone call from the office director. He told me that they had decided that I was not a good "fit" for the company.

In short, AP Financial just might be a decent company to buy annuities from. But, they are very misleading in how they hire people. As I said before, sales people are not managers. Companies like AP and most other sales companies really need to understand what a "manager" is and what they do. I can tell you this, they don't work on commission.
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#11 Consumer Comment

Stop playing "lawyer games."

AUTHOR: Newfenoix - (U.S.A.)

In March of 2008, I went to one of these "cattle call" interviews at the Dallas office. I was very unimpressed. I was supposed to be interviewed for a "manager position." I would assume that the other 15 people in the conference room were there for the same reason.

Now, I have a degree in management and have over 15 years of experience in different level of management. I am aware of what it takes to be a successful manager. I am also aware of what a company looks for when they interview prospective managers. I saw none of that during this circus. But, I stuck around because of shear, morbid curiosity.

The "head man" made his pitch and it became clear that this was a sales job, and a poor one at that. I have seen several sales companies use the "manager trainee" ad to lure in victims. Sales people are not "manager trainees." And this is the main problem with the way AP Financial does business.

AP Financial IS NOT looking for managers OR financial professionals. They are looking for sales people, plain and simple. It is true that this company has no negative BBB reports against them. But that does not mean that this is a good company. By advertising for "manager trainees" they are at best being misleading and at worst, lying.

I actually went to the second interview and was "hired." But when I asked serious questions about pay, benefits, responsibilities, etc., etc., I was told that all of that stuff would be revealed as the "training" progressed. "Training" consisted of sitting in a conference room listening to this kid rattle on about annuities and variable life policies. I learned more about this stuff in college!

Well, I brought my wife in to buy a variable life policy. And that is where the truth came out. They insisted that we pay with a check and then have a monthly debit set up. We refused. I told them that we would pay with a money order ONLY. They refused to accept the money order. We left. Two days later, I received a phone call from the office director. He told me that they had decided that I was not a good "fit" for the company.

In short, AP Financial just might be a decent company to buy annuities from. But, they are very misleading in how they hire people. As I said before, sales people are not managers. Companies like AP and most other sales companies really need to understand what a "manager" is and what they do. I can tell you this, they don't work on commission.
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#12 Consumer Comment

Stop playing "lawyer games."

AUTHOR: Newfenoix - (U.S.A.)

In March of 2008, I went to one of these "cattle call" interviews at the Dallas office. I was very unimpressed. I was supposed to be interviewed for a "manager position." I would assume that the other 15 people in the conference room were there for the same reason.

Now, I have a degree in management and have over 15 years of experience in different level of management. I am aware of what it takes to be a successful manager. I am also aware of what a company looks for when they interview prospective managers. I saw none of that during this circus. But, I stuck around because of shear, morbid curiosity.

The "head man" made his pitch and it became clear that this was a sales job, and a poor one at that. I have seen several sales companies use the "manager trainee" ad to lure in victims. Sales people are not "manager trainees." And this is the main problem with the way AP Financial does business.

AP Financial IS NOT looking for managers OR financial professionals. They are looking for sales people, plain and simple. It is true that this company has no negative BBB reports against them. But that does not mean that this is a good company. By advertising for "manager trainees" they are at best being misleading and at worst, lying.

I actually went to the second interview and was "hired." But when I asked serious questions about pay, benefits, responsibilities, etc., etc., I was told that all of that stuff would be revealed as the "training" progressed. "Training" consisted of sitting in a conference room listening to this kid rattle on about annuities and variable life policies. I learned more about this stuff in college!

Well, I brought my wife in to buy a variable life policy. And that is where the truth came out. They insisted that we pay with a check and then have a monthly debit set up. We refused. I told them that we would pay with a money order ONLY. They refused to accept the money order. We left. Two days later, I received a phone call from the office director. He told me that they had decided that I was not a good "fit" for the company.

In short, AP Financial just might be a decent company to buy annuities from. But, they are very misleading in how they hire people. As I said before, sales people are not managers. Companies like AP and most other sales companies really need to understand what a "manager" is and what they do. I can tell you this, they don't work on commission.
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#13 Consumer Suggestion

Where's your ethics, Advisor19?

AUTHOR: Kw - (U.S.A.)

Advisor19, several questions I'd like to understand:

So even though YOU felt not comfortable buying a VUL through these guys, you would SELL OUT your friends/family and have them come in to buy VUL? For what? "Promises of vast wealth and rapid advancement?"

You have a bachelor degree from a major university, and currently work at a large financial firm, yet you seem to lack the basic logic & thought process. For "promises of vast wealth and rapid advancement", you're willing to do things you don't understand and don't feel comfortable with. If some guys promise you vast wealth by distributing cocaine, would you do it? If some guys promise you rapid advancement if you hand-over your bank account to them, would you do it? So how comes when you're told to book 7 appointments, you didn't question why, and how that fits in the overall business model of this company?

People, take note:
A person that would blindly follow instructions without questioning if it makes sense or if it's ethical,
one that would SELL OUT his friends/families for "promise of vast wealth",
can still pass the NASD/FINRA Securities Series 7 and 66 exam,
and is now working in one of the major traditional financial firms, servicing you.
... I'm not sure I want to be Advisor19's client.

Advisor19,
Do you consider a VUL to be a product that one "can't get out of unless they want to pay huge penalities"? I thought you said you took licensing exams, is now a licensed professional, and works for a wow-big-name company. Have you heard of the term unilateral contract? Are you familiar with the nature of a life insurance contract, be it VUL or any other policy? Do you know how EASY it is to quit a life insurance policy? Are you not familiar with ways to exit from a life policy without penalities? And you call yourself a professional, an advisor? How do you advise people? Or do you base your advice on misrepresentation? Because you obviously misrepresented VUL policy cancellation/surrender procedures in general. I can see why you wouldn't want to name your firm, since I can see how if I were in your BOM's shoes, I'd have to let you go.

Advisor19,
Did I read correctly that you're marketing VUL as "a great investment tool"? How would you like to get up on the stage and say that again? Would you like to know how quickly a Series7 & 66 licensed person can lose his license?


For the record, I am not affiliated with APF. Never even heard of them.
However, I am an indepedent contractor to *a* financial service firm.
It ticks me off to see second-rated people in this field who, unable to establish their own business and having to hide under the shadow of big-name long-history companies as employees, would defame competitor's firms through anonymous means.
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#14 Consumer Comment

Steer Clear of this Company!

AUTHOR: That's The Facts - (U.S.A.)



I read the rip-off report after my first cattle-call' interview.

FYI. I have a series 7/66 and have worked in this industry. However, I was looking for something else but my red flag went up when I got the email. I decided to go anyway.

Sure enough, they were very interested in my natural market. In fact, I had to write down ten names right away. Okay, no big deal but I'm in a room with about 10 people. There was no one in the office over 30, first clue. The person who is the top dog is about 24. She went on about how fast we would be promoted and how much the licensing cost. Look at what we are investing in YOU! That kind of dribble.

So we broke off into individual interviews that lasted about 2 minutes. The huge question about the warm market was asked. The deal is you need 5 people and 35 referrals. I can see how if a person is not licensed this works very well for the team leaders'. However, I am licensed. I was asked back for a 2nd interview the next day.

I went back on-line and found the rip-off report on this company. I read all the rebuttals (some are just mud-slinging). So I went in on the 2nd interview and the other few who were asked back were there and wow, did the talk come out! "CONGRATULATIONS! You are the cream of the crop!" That kind of horse hockey. My red flags are really coming out now. She said how much she made, and how much a guy in another office made and that's about it for me. People who talk about their paychecks are scam artists and sorry everyone, that's the best indicator right there.

Another thing is while we were waiting for our personal interviews another lady was asking personal questions from the group. Where we live, about our families, that kind of stuff. Very close to illegal. I was waiting for one "How old are you?" But they were smart and let us talk, but the seed was planted to let us tell them the stuff that will get us cut from the pack. Single parent, etc. (Can't have those children get in the way of performance!)


So my personal interview came up and I asked how I was paid you know, to make her squirm. From what your team does. So I asked if this was an MLM. Nope. But the commission structure was never spoken about. That 2nd interview lasted about 5 minutes. I was asked if I was all ready to get going and I said sure, I have a few things to do but can get on it in a week. I was told to be by the phone between 5:30 -6:30 that evening. No call. I did not expect one.

I turned up the heat. So I emailed. No answer. I called and the guy (young and inexperienced) that answered left his hand off the phone and asked her if she wanted to talk to (Insert my name here.) I could hear his tone; I was that guy that asked the wrong (right!) questions. She told him to tell me she was busy and she would call me but she never did.

What they are doing is not illegal but should be and my guess is in today's current situation with our economy in the tank it would not be that hard to get this kind of business model outlawed. The pressure to sell blinds people to what's best for their customers, and this business model is the worst one for that.

Folks, if they don't bring you in for a PERSONAL interview. Look out. If they talk how much $$ they make, look out. If you are hired in a 24 hour time span look out.

I hope this person reads this because at least have the courtesy to call me and say you are not hired. If you were a true leader, that's what you would do. But you know that I know and that's every reason to stay away from me.

If you like taking advantage of the very people you are leading' then this is the place for you. They may be growing but that means nothing when trust is a huge issue and the big fish are going under. Scams like this will pop up all over the place.

I don't care who types a rebuttal. I have no plans to answer it. These are the facts and I'm standing by em.

Peace.
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#15 Consumer Comment

All "new" insurance agents are "started out" by selling to their warm market, i.e. family & friends

AUTHOR: Friendly Help - (U.S.A.)

But reputable insurance companies will pay any comissions obtained from sales to the new agent's warm market to that new agent.

The *first-two-year* failure rate for new insurance salespeople is probably the same as the failure rate for new real estate salespeople, 95%. And when the new agent quits, the house (agent in charge) then gets the residuals, which over the years is a pretty good deal.

I have read before about "unlicensed new" insurance agents being "started out" by going on sales calls with their "mentor" where the mentor sells product to the "new" insurance agent's warm market after which the mentor keeps both the initial comission and any residuals. Scam, scam, scam......

So we have some shills here........... What else is new?
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#16 UPDATE EX-employee responds

How am I wrong?

AUTHOR: Wee Man - (U.S.A.)

OK 'Facts Please', how am I wrong? You and I both know that a large majority of business is gained through APFinancial's new hires and their training contacts. You and I also know that the senior reps don't do much business that isn't related to training the new hires, right? And you and I also know that once the trainee makes it out on his own, they don't last too long. I'm not sure how I was wrong with what I put, but I'm sure you'll let me know. If you've got a problem with me, let's hear it.....
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#17 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Wee Man is wrong yet again

AUTHOR: Facts Please - (U.S.A.)

Wee Man aka Tiny... you really need to obtain a life. It is quite sad and I actually feel sorry for you. Let me offer you a hand and get you some professional help.
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#18 UPDATE Employee

OVER DOING IT

AUTHOR: Sunny - (U.S.A.)

I started working for Aegon 3 months ago. I opened up a vul. I didnt get a commission from it. But I did my research before I opened one up and it was suitable for me. As per your situation.

Never was told to bring my family! Secondly if you would stop being lazy and get your license you wouldn't be commenting. Finally the paychecks are real. You wrote everything you did because you didn't get licensed, you lost focus, DIDNT APPLY yourself and now your taking the easy way out.. pushing the blame on others.. WAAAAAAAAAAAAH.

Instead of posting you should be studying for your license. Mind you if you failed once you can re take it..
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#19 UPDATE Employee

OVER DOING IT

AUTHOR: Sunny - (U.S.A.)

I started working for Aegon 3 months ago. I opened up a vul. I didnt get a commission from it. But I did my research before I opened one up and it was suitable for me. As per your situation.

Never was told to bring my family! Secondly if you would stop being lazy and get your license you wouldn't be commenting. Finally the paychecks are real. You wrote everything you did because you didn't get licensed, you lost focus, DIDNT APPLY yourself and now your taking the easy way out.. pushing the blame on others.. WAAAAAAAAAAAAH.

Instead of posting you should be studying for your license. Mind you if you failed once you can re take it..
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#20 UPDATE Employee

OVER DOING IT

AUTHOR: Sunny - (U.S.A.)

I started working for Aegon 3 months ago. I opened up a vul. I didnt get a commission from it. But I did my research before I opened one up and it was suitable for me. As per your situation.

Never was told to bring my family! Secondly if you would stop being lazy and get your license you wouldn't be commenting. Finally the paychecks are real. You wrote everything you did because you didn't get licensed, you lost focus, DIDNT APPLY yourself and now your taking the easy way out.. pushing the blame on others.. WAAAAAAAAAAAAH.

Instead of posting you should be studying for your license. Mind you if you failed once you can re take it..
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#21 UPDATE Employee

OVER DOING IT

AUTHOR: Sunny - (U.S.A.)

I started working for Aegon 3 months ago. I opened up a vul. I didnt get a commission from it. But I did my research before I opened one up and it was suitable for me. As per your situation.

Never was told to bring my family! Secondly if you would stop being lazy and get your license you wouldn't be commenting. Finally the paychecks are real. You wrote everything you did because you didn't get licensed, you lost focus, DIDNT APPLY yourself and now your taking the easy way out.. pushing the blame on others.. WAAAAAAAAAAAAH.

Instead of posting you should be studying for your license. Mind you if you failed once you can re take it..
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#22 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Right on!

AUTHOR: Wee Man - (U.S.A.)

Oh man Anonymous, you are right on the money with this comment. I'm embarrassed to say that I worked for this company for about 4 months and finally realized how things really worked there. This company is completely unethical and I have no idea as to how they are still in business. Once the word is spread, they will fail miserably. There is no way the current employees that go on the training appointments with the new hires could survive without the new hires. Did you ever see any of the senior reps making phone calls? I sure didn't. If they were calling anyone, it would be the person they were training to find out when they were meeting with a friend or family member. I love how they would always come back from an appointment and brag about how much money they got down on a VUL or an annuity. They know not everyone should be put in one, but that doesn't stop them. They are more interested in the high commission instead of the well-being of their clients. I'm not sure how to spread the word and warn others of this company, so I hope this at least informs a good handful of people.
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#23 Consumer Suggestion

Looking at the right reports

AUTHOR: None - (U.S.A.)

Please note that it would always be beneficial to always resort to conducting your research on any particular company through reputable sources. Some examples of credible resources when investigating a company, especially a company in the financial industry, would be the BBB, Attorney's General Office, State Licensing website (www.fldfs.com), and FINRA (nasd.com). AP Financial has not unresolved complaints or issues through the Better Business Burea, has a umblemished record through the securities industry, and has two offices that are members with the BBB. It is encouraged to conduct research on companies when necessary, but be intelligent about where you research your information. There is always something negative about every thing and every company out there, whether it is accurate or not.
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#24 Consumer Suggestion

lets get our terminology straight!

AUTHOR: Steve - (U.S.A.)

This is NOT a "job". There is no "hiring" Nobody was "let go". There is no employee/employer relationship here. This is a commissioned sales, business opportunity. A scam.
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#25 Consumer Suggestion

lets get our terminology straight!

AUTHOR: Steve - (U.S.A.)

This is NOT a "job". There is no "hiring" Nobody was "let go". There is no employee/employer relationship here. This is a commissioned sales, business opportunity. A scam.
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#26 Consumer Suggestion

lets get our terminology straight!

AUTHOR: Steve - (U.S.A.)

This is NOT a "job". There is no "hiring" Nobody was "let go". There is no employee/employer relationship here. This is a commissioned sales, business opportunity. A scam.
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#27 Author of original report

this is getting out of hand

AUTHOR: Advisor19 - (U.S.A.)

I'm not sure who you think I am, or why you think I'm that person, given the amount of people who work there, but I was not fired I left. I didn't make a fuss about anything when I left the company, I just said that it wasn't for me. I had no hard feelings toward anyone there, I wasn't some fired, disgruntled employee. I didn't ask for or receive any of my fees back. (that would've been amazing if I did) Now I'm not a lawyer, so I may be wrong, but I didn't think I was doing anything illegal by writing about my brief experience with this company. Anyway, I have nothing else to say.

But seriously I want you to know that I can't be who you think I am because I left on my own when I realized that I wasn't comfortable there, and I didn't receive any money back. I didn't think that was an option so I never even tried. So if you do take legal action(not that it's necessary because I have nothing else to say) on a person who was fired and received all of their fees back, you'd be taking legal action on someone who has nothing to do with this report.

Thanks.
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#28 Author of original report

this is getting out of hand

AUTHOR: Advisor19 - (U.S.A.)

I'm not sure who you think I am, or why you think I'm that person, given the amount of people who work there, but I was not fired I left. I didn't make a fuss about anything when I left the company, I just said that it wasn't for me. I had no hard feelings toward anyone there, I wasn't some fired, disgruntled employee. I didn't ask for or receive any of my fees back. (that would've been amazing if I did) Now I'm not a lawyer, so I may be wrong, but I didn't think I was doing anything illegal by writing about my brief experience with this company. Anyway, I have nothing else to say.

But seriously I want you to know that I can't be who you think I am because I left on my own when I realized that I wasn't comfortable there, and I didn't receive any money back. I didn't think that was an option so I never even tried. So if you do take legal action(not that it's necessary because I have nothing else to say) on a person who was fired and received all of their fees back, you'd be taking legal action on someone who has nothing to do with this report.

Thanks.
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#29 UPDATE Employee

Worked with this individual

AUTHOR: None - (U.S.A.)

I am an employee who worked and KNOWS the individual that filed this report. The individual received a full refund of the fees because of lack of ability to work with a team. I will say nothing more than this person was not entitled to the fees, but we wanted to part ways on a mutual standing because the individual did not get along with the fellow team members. As a result, this person proceeded to lie about the company and it's practices with no concept of the true business model involved. This person's ego was hurt because the employer let this person go.

This being said, we know exactly who this individual is and has stated certain things in his reports that has led to a conclusive evidence of this person's identity. If this individual proceeds to continue to slander the company and it's practices through this website, our lawyers will be notified to proceed with potential legal action regarding this person's false allegations.
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#30 Author of original report

lack of education?

AUTHOR: Advisor19 - (U.S.A.)

I didn't 'think' i had what it took when i signed up for this job, i do have what it takes. Maybe you missed the part of my statement that explains how I am currently a S7 and S66 licensed advisor for a company that is a household name in the financial services industry. I also stated that I was embarrassed that it took me such a long time to realize that this company is simply a pyramid scheme, or multi-level marketing. Not trying to blame other's for my failure, seeing as how I'm succeeding with a very reputable company.

I'm not in any way trying to ruin this company's name, I clearly stated that they're not doing anything illegal. All I know is that when you go to work for any big firm, (merrill lynch, goldman sachs, etc) They have you get licensed before you start getting clients, as opposed to having you bring in 7 clients (your friends and family) before getting licensed, selling every one of them a VUL, and letting your mentor take all the commissions. I didn't write this to discredit the company, I simply wrote it to let other people know what they are getting into.

Out of the large group of new recruits that I started with, (and I was not lying it was approximately 30, maybe 25, i didn't count) the vast majority of them left the company within the first month for the reasons i've explained. Some left because they couldn't hack it, or they failed their licensing exams. But I kept in touch with a few of them and they were all upset about the experience and just wished they knew more about this company up front. I simply wrote this to warn others and maybe save some other people the $800 if this isn't what they're looking for.

They're very smart in the recruiting process and it's hard to truly realize what is going on until you have already paid your fees and are already pretty far into the process. There are a lot of people making a lot of money at this company, and there is nothing wrong with that, I just didn't feel right there. I'm sorry if I came off as trying to bash AP Financial. My intention was simply to share my experience with others and give others a heads up. If I had been able to read something like this it would've saved me some money.

Oh and one last thing, you're right there are no other reports about this company, it is a very small company, only a few years old with 10 or so offices nationwide. However, the parent company, Aegon, was involved in another pyramid scheme just like this, operating under the name WMA, and there are several reports on this site about WMA.

Thanks
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#31 Consumer Comment

lack of education

AUTHOR: Nhh19 - (U.S.A.)

It may sound like a scam if someone reads only your side of the story. If you lie about one thing in the report i.e. having 30 people hired on with you, than how can the rest of your report be credible. They might have a group interview of 30 to have more to choose from, but they have second interviews for a reason, so they can narrow that field of 30 down to just a few. You thought it was a good job when you signed up, and you thought you had what it took to do this ype of job, or else you wouldn't have paid the up front fees.

Just because you didn't have the ability and resources to make it work for you, why would you try and make this company look bad. If the company was really this bad, there would probably be more than just one report on this website.

Some people succeed in life, and others fail. Most of the people that fail doing something look for blame somewhere else. If they couldn't get it done, then for some reason its always someone elses fault. If you can't accomplish something, or if it wasn't "the right fit" for you, you shouldn't try and make something that is a good thing, look bad to someone that has no knowledge of it at all.
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