In November 2005 I saw an exciting infomercial on television promising lucrative earnings, the way out of Corporate America, be your own boss, make millions, etc. I called the number and ordered the basic $59.89 package. Please note that this dispute does not concern this specific purchase, I'm just trying to paint a picture for you. Three weeks later I finally received the package containing poorly constructed books full of vague and outdated information. I decided that the program was a joke and was upset that I wasted my money in the first place. I give the product no further thought and I continue to do my thing happily. Then, months later it gets really interesting!
On January 26, 2006 I received a phonecall from a gentleman named Andy Davis. Mr. Davis explained to me that he is calling on behalf of the John Beck Free and Clear real estate seminar.
Since I ordered the program they figured that I would be an excellent prospect for this seminar. Mr. Davis explained that the John Beck program is trying to find a select few coachable people to become "success stories" to use on their next infomercial that they are shooting this summer. Because I was interested in the prospect of being my own boss I wanted to learn more about this opportunity. Realizing that the basic program was a disaster I thought that with some real help I might just make something of it after all. After about 30 minutes of talking with Mr. Davis he told me that he thinks I have what it takes to participate in the program and he wanted me to speak with the Director of the program, Chris Rumleski.
It was then that I spoke with Mr. Rumleski who explained that I will realize a lucrative income using the John Beck program. The investment needed to begin the program was dependant on the individual. They suggested an investment of $15,000.00 to $25,000.00 and when I protested they suggested I start with a $4,000.00 to $8,000.00 investment. I agreed to a low risk option and they said that would be perfect.
Mr. Rumleski then started questioning me regarding the condition of my credit. I told him that I had good credit and he asked me if I had credit cards with enough available credit lines to cover the $5,410.00 cost for me to enter the program. I was told that the entry fee covers any and all fees associated with the program, that it was an all inclusive fee. I told him that I might have the cards and I took some time to locate them. My concern at this time was that I was unemployed and the credit cards had a fairly high APR against the balances. Mr. Rumleski simply suggested that I since I had good credit that I should easily acquire a new credit card
that carries a 0% interest rate. He then said that he did not want me to maintain balances on cards that carry an active APR, that he didn't want me to pay any additional money to participate in this program, that the idea is to beat the system and use YOUR money (credit card company) to make money. I felt that Mr. Rumleski was sincere and had my best interests in mind. I was told to expect a call from a coach who would help me with the program.
The following week I received a package in the mail from the John Beck seminar program. This package contained more poorly written printed materials and absolutely no information regarding the substance of this program. At this point I could not understand how this program worked and was completely reliant on the guidance of the professional coach. In these materials was a document entitled: Enrollment Confirmation. This is my receipt of the purchase and itemizes the products and services and their prices. I was encouraged to quickly sign and return this document. Because I felt so uncomfortable with the program I did not.
February 1, 2006 at 9:00 am I was contacted by Shawn Farr. In this call I was told that I would be contacted by Tax Advantage who is a sister company who offers tax advice for John Beck customers for an additional fee. I was also encouraged to visit several websites and to purchase memberships that would grant me access to additional information. I also received a box later that day via Fed Ex containing tax software and other unknown supplies for the program. I never opened the box and I decided that I wanted out of the program.
I was feeling very uncomfortable about the program and that I wanted to get out and recover my investment. When I called back to with my concerns, Mr. Rumleski he was very reassuring and insisted that I'd get my money back. He was incredibly charasmatic, believable and had the ability to sway my frustration and confusion to confidence in the program. Before I hung up the phone with him I clearly and deliberatly asked him if I go ahead and try the program for a little while that if I still felt uncomfortable with it that I could quit and get a refund and he said that was indeed an option. I remember specifically thanking him for the peace of mind he afforded me and went on my way. However it did not take long for the anger and frustration to return when it occurred to me that the $5,410.00 that I invested was not all inclusive to all of the products and services necessary to become the success story that the John Beck Program so desires! This was confusing to me, it seemed like they still wanted more money.
On February 7, 2006 I took the unopened box of supplies and typed up a letter (a copy of which is provided) which I sent in care of Chris Rumleski. No reply was received through traditional mail, e-mail or telephone regarding the letter. Since the materials were not refused and they did not come back to my doorstep I was under the assumption that they were accepted at the 752 East 1180 South, Suite 200, American Fork, UT 84003 return address to which I sent.
I waited patiently for the package and letter to be received to await a response from Mr. Rumleski.
On February 15, 2006 I became upset and impatient. I called back to Chris Rumleski determined to finalize my relationship with the John Beck Program. He said that he was sorry that I felt that way and gave me the direct line to the customer service department. The young woman I spoke with in customer service was of no help to me whatsoever. She told me that the program was non-refundable. When I explained to her the conversation I had with Chris Rumleski regarding the opportunity to opt out of the program for a full refund she said that I would have to take that up with him.
I immediately called Chris Rumleski back and explained to him that I got no help from Customer Service. He then told me that it was the coaching staff that would be able to refund my money from the program and he gave me the direct line to that department. After a brief conversation with the secretary I was informed that the coaching staff had no control over account maintenance.
As you can see the coaching staff was a dead end. I immediately called Mr. Rumleski again to explain to him the dead end that I have found myself in. He then told me that the only people who could help me was the Customer Service department. So it was aparent to me that he deliberatly set me on a wild goose chase to find help that I am never ment to find. I begged and pleaded with Mr. Rumleski that I needed him to contact Customer Service on my behalf since he was in a notable position, aware of my needs, and seemed outwardly interested in helping me out.
Before I got off the phone with him he told me that he has send an email out to Customer Service requesting assistance in this matter, that he is looking into it personally. He then reassured me that the Customer Service department is typically very fast at responding to requests and that he would indeed speak to someone on my behalf and notify me when progress is made. Today's date is February 21, 2006 and I have yet to receive any notification from the John Beck Program.
Feeling very despirate I did call Customer Service one more time and spoke with a young woman. I explained to her that I have not been getting any help from any staff in finalizing my relationship with the John Beck program. I mentioned to her that my joining the program initially was contingent on having a 0% interest rate card to transfer to (which I failed to have acquired at this time). Once I had mentioned this she told me that she would locate my recorded conversation when I signed up for the program and that if she heard a mention of my not having a satisfactory credit card, and that it would present a disagreeable situation, that she could help me then.
When she tried to get off the phone with me to locate the audio recording I insisted that I would simply hold until she found it. She agreed and stated that she and I would listen to it together once she found it. Several minutes pass and she beeps back in and tells me she is having trouble finding it and that she would call me back as soon as she finds it. I made sure that she had my phone number so that she could contact me right away. I expected a phone call later that day but nearly a week later I still have had no phonecalls from the John Beck
In summation not only was I over promised and under delivered, I was mislead to believe that the $5,410.00 provided all of the investment into the program that I needed to become a prized "success story" but the product and customer service has been far from adequate at any price.
I feel that I have been fed sugar coated lies, misleading and false information. My experience with the John Beck program has been nothing short of dispairing and hopeless. I was not delivered the cooperation of a morally and ethically sound business with the customer's best interest in mind. If the company is indeed as lucratively successful as they claim, my $5,410.00 investment would be easily refunded no questions asked.
Having exhausted all of my diplomatic options to obtain a deserved refund I have filed disputes with each of the credit card companies that I financed the program through. I have also done some investigating into the John Beck experience for others and have uncovered an elaborate scam!
As it turns out I am not alone in my situation as I have read cases where consumers have lost five figures in "investment" money into the program and that those fighting the company aremet without sympathy and are forced as I am to resort to filing disputes with their respective credit card companies. I am only thankful that most credit card companies will stand and fight for fair treatment of their clients and help put a stop to unfair business practices.
Ripoffreport.com is riddled with cases against Professional Marketing International who not only works John Beck prospects but many other popular infomercial clients as well. After reading the disasters of other victims of this scam I am more motivated than ever to escape. No company that uses deception as a marketing strategy deserves a dime of anyone's hard earned money.
Unfortunately I was participating in this program for nearly a month before I realized that something was fishy and I did a search on "John Beck" on Yahoo! and BAM!!! Scam, con artist, deception, etc. were all words I found describing this mockery of a business. I feel so foolish but I am not alone.
Reid, I have read more of your rebuttals than I can count! You are the man! lol. While I hate to see others in pain and frustration it does my heart good to see that others are pissed off as well and are doing something about it. Without your motivation and inspiration I might not have chosen to fight the good fight.
I thought I was going to take the loss of my $5,410.00 investment into the seminar / mentoring program but after reading the victories of others who have won their disputes I was inspired to at least try.
These are the materials I have prepared for my disputes. I have not sent any of these yet as I am perfecting my case. I would like all of you who would like to share your opinion to browse this list of items and tell me what you think about my case so far. What else do I need to do?
Along with my statement above I am submitting to my credit card companies a copy of a dated and signed written request of refund and relationship finalization, a copy of the "success stories" supplement, a copy of the unsigned enrollment confirmation, three independent third party reviews / critiques of the program (all of which are negative), and several pages from ripoffreport.com which chronicle other customers' experience with the program. I have also contacted a legitimate real estate agent who is willing to review the materials I have received and write a letter explaining that the program is incapable of yielding claimed results.
I have to admit that I'm very confident in my dispute thus far but am willing to find how to improve it.
What ever became of the collection agency and the prospect of a court date and threats of ruining credit? Just how big is this can of worms?
Thank you all for the support and motivation to fight! Good luck to you all.
Vine Grove, Kentucky