Report: #808325

Complaint Review: Harvard Risk Management Corporation

  • Submitted: Mon, December 12, 2011
  • Updated: Wed, April 30, 2014
  • Reported By: Facts — Nashville Tennessee United States of America
  • Harvard Risk Management Corporation
    4660 Mirandy Road, Algood, TN
    Dallas, Texas
    United States of America

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Harvard Risk Management Corporation, whose CEO Mark Riches is also a Platinum Executive Director with Prepaid Legal/Legal Shield, is basically his Legal Shield company name. The products and pyramid/MLM scheme are the same, with the new addition of the Identity Theft product. 

Random resumes are pulled from Career Builder for recruitment, where you are pretty much the customer. Then they will sell you access to their Career Builder account to recruit for yourself, and to the Safety Source database for leads, when only one person at a time can log in and they are actively working the leads themselves. There's a bargain for $50. Of course you need a policy of your own to speak from personal experience and to get full and vested commissions. 

There are also numerous conventions, etc that you have to pay to attend, marketing materials to buy, etc. They quote large numbers in commissions, not telling you that it's advanced commission, and when a membership drops before the full year, you then owe them money. Considering that memberships drop almost as fast as they are acquired, and one report by Robert Fitzpatrick (an MLM and pyramid scheme expert) that listed that only 1.6% of sales people were able to sell more than ten memberships, that is a lot of money invested so you can owe them in the end. 
Not to mention that when you rope friends and family, as pushed, into this, you are putting them in this situation. 

Read on here the customer experiences of trying to cancel accounts and being charged months after cancelling, (search Prepaid Legal and Legal Sheild) not being represented by attorneys as promised, etc. . Then google the legal trouble of Prepaid and Legal Shield, the SEC investigations, the accounting problems, the lawsuits and guilty of fraud verdicts. Read Mr. Fitzpatrick's full report and the readily available information you need to make an informed decision before investing as a consumer or sales person. 

Then read this group presentation script publicly available from the CEOs website,, and compare the facts given there to the actual benefits listed on even Legal Shield's website.


Of course, those who drank the kool aid will jump to defend, and that's fine. It's what they are trained to do and need to believe for themselves. Don't take my word for it, or theirs. Do your research and make up your mind. If you are curious as to how the CEO would respond to these accusations of a pyramid scheme, check out his public response to that very accusation as posted Feb. 9, 2010 on the blog of

"Its your life and you only get one shot. But dont put down others that are pursuing their dreams through business, MLM, or any other form of enterprise. I say cheers to them all! Not everyone can be an owner. We need employees. We need people to work in the restaurants, and pick up our garbage and clean the resorts that my wife and I visit."  - Mark H. Riches, CEO of HRMC
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/12/2011 03:33 PM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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Updates & Rebuttals


#1 UPDATE Employee

The BBB is NOT a scam!

AUTHOR: Robert - ()

First of all I want to say that I am the Business Development Manager with the Better Business Bureaus local office in Winston Salem, NC. I was personally looking for information on Harvard Risk Management when I came across this blog.  As a long time employee of the Better Business Bureau I was shocked and quick frankly outraged that someone, who obviously don't know what they are talking about would try to smear the over 100 year old reputation of an honorable organization like the BBB. Yes. There have unfortunately been some less than honorable deeds by some less that honorable people who managed to get hired by the BBB, even though our screening process is thorough. But those one time incidents should not reflect on the integrity of the entire organization! When a company has thousands of employees like the BBB does, sooner or later a bad one comes through. So, lets set the record strait. You cannot buy a good rating from the BBB! The BBB requires you to have a good rating of above a B+ in order to be considered for Accreditation. And you must maintain this rating or loose your Accreditation. This misconception has been perpetuated by people who do not know the facts and companies that have gotten bad rating from the BBB because of their bad business practices. They then try and smear the BBB with unsubstantiated BS. Unfortunately many look at reports like these and others like it and assume that the poster knows what he/she is talking about! And often, as is obviously the case here they do not.

So, here I am and actual employees of the BBB who knows what we do, how we do it and I along with all the other employees of the BBB take offence to this type of unmitigated, unsubstantiated slander against our organization. Again. We do not give a company a good rating for pay (Pay to Play). We accept donations ONLY from companies that already meet our pre-requirements of Accreditation and have passed or strict investigations. They also must agree to be monitored to ensure that continually comply. We hold our Accredited Businesses to a much higher standard than non Accredited Businesses and take our role as consumer watchdogs very seriously and would never breach our own code of conduct. The BBB is a non profit organization that has been servicing the public for over 100 years. We are proud of the trust that consumers have in our organization and are honored that they have trusted us this long to help them make the right decisions on who to do business with and who not to. We rate businesses on an A+ to F rating and you do NOT have to pay to be listed and rated with the BBB.

I hope this clears up some misconceptions that this poster has unknowingly caused. I would be remiss if I didn't take this perfect opportunity to remind people not to believe everything you read without going to the source first and remember, before you hand over your hard earned money to anyone, check the out with the BBB first at

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#2 Consumer Comment

How to tell when a job is bogus

AUTHOR: AlexTrippe - (USA)

You know that a job opportunity is b.s. when the person(s) on the side of the company invokes their Better Business rating. The BBB is a scam in itself. They will remove any negative reviews and get you that coveted "A+ Rating" for a fee. Kind of, exactly like extortion. Another sign that a job opportunity is a hoax is Donna from Cookesville, TN calling you (in this case me) everyday for the last two weeks. I do not exaggerate when I say "every day". I use my phone constantly when I am working, and haven't had the time to answer the phone to tell Donna to put me on her Do Not Call list, but will do so soon. Ask yourself this; what legitimate company would call recruits daily? Shouldn't it be the other way around? Legitimate companies do not pay the Donnas from Cookesville, TN of the world to call and harass potential employees. That is a sign of desperation on the employers part. 

Unfortunately Career Builder, like any other good thing that stays on the web too long, has gone down the crapper. It seems that the only companies that use them now are pyramid schemes like Harvard Risk Management. 

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#3 General Comment

Yes, you need to purchase the product!

AUTHOR: Val - ()

I was just recruited by Harvard Risk Management and watched their new hire videos yesterday. You MUST purchase the Legal Sheild product yourself IF you want to recieve any residuals.

So, what does that tell you? Are you joining HRM for free or to make a living? To make a living, so obviously you need to purchase the product yourself!

I was doing my due diligence in investigating this company, since they are attempting to recruit me. This is a perfect place to come to really find out whats going one.

Also, just google their name or the name of the "executive" who is recruiting you. (In what company does a VP recruit people himself? MLM scams, thats where!


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#4 Consumer Comment

My Advice

AUTHOR: MLS582 - ()

My advice to anyone who signs on with Harvard Benefits is to show the contract to a lawyer - if possible - therefore perhaps understand from one - therefore to understand when told that you would be out of your mind to sign it - would give you a boost of confidence in lawyers or clean bill of health knowing its good - because knowing or not knowing your responsibilities is where many arguments start or knowing the difference between fact and fiction - where the scam is. Problem is some scams catch you by surprise - most experts can explain if its a scam or not.

Knowing is the key. Sure you can intend to do good and intend to do better. What is the difference between fact and fiction - the 2 acually exist. If its fictional someone will reason its factual or practical  while you still know its unreal - someone can make silly reasonings about things that are real fiction or expect it be beyond your focus of understanding, and etc. If it factual they can prove it - people just can be blind to it by expecting more than what was said - yet that was all that was said.


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#5 UPDATE Employee

Do not have to buy the product!!!

AUTHOR: Moonshimmer18 - ()

Just to clarify, you do not have to buy a membership or buy the product!!! It is suggested that you do so you know what you are selling. So you have personal experience. You do not have to buy the product to sell it! It is suggested but not required and we don't hound you to buy into it later either! 

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#6 UPDATE Employee

Not a scam...

AUTHOR: Moonshimmer18 - ()

1. Pyramids are companies that sell illegal products. Our plans are legal.

2. Something about career builder that you have to buy? That didn't make sense. We don't make you buy into career builder.....If you put your resume out there, and we want to hire you, yes, we are going to contact you.

3. Yes you have to pay to attend the conventions. Everyone has to pay to go to any type of convention in their field. Even doctors. However, if a person you sold a membership to decides to drop at any time, that chargeback is POSITIVE. It comes out of your next commission. We don't send you a bill...

4. If a client cancels their membership. They aren't billed. Its cancelled. 

5. is not affiliated with us. I tried to use your copy and paste method into google, but nothing came up.

6. I'm only here to defend the company and be honest with people. This company has an A+ BBB rating. So....

7. The CEOs name is MIKE RICHES. Usually when someone is quoted, its something that has been written down or said in a conversation on television which is usually written all over the internet. Also, quotes are used in private conversations. If MIKE did say this, which I highly doubt, there is no record of it anywhere. Mike is an honest man who cares about people and to outrageously lie is...unexusable. 


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#7 Consumer Comment

Legalshield member since 3 years and Love it!!!

AUTHOR: slazarrus - ()

I sign up to be a Legalshield  member 3 years ago and love it. I can honestly tell you everytime I call the law firm that represent me i get treated with care. Everytime I call I always get a phone call back  before the end of the day and my questions always  get answered. I don't know about other people  but my mind is at peace when I know I have a lawfirm that will represent me, answer my call or be at my service, or even write a letter on my behalf or even help me review a contract, and benefit to other service they provide me.

It's sadden when an individual who had a bad experience, post negative comments about a bad service they reveive whitout contact the company to report it so the company have a chance to reprimanded their employees or fix the issue.


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#8 Consumer Suggestion

Career Builder

AUTHOR: glopina - ()

This is just an FYI. It isn't necessairly the MLM company that is pulling resumes; many of them do and it's not the company it is usually individuals. Career Builder is notorious for this. Many MLM's use not only Career Builder, but also Craigslist. Career Builder does not screen it's "employers" whereas Monster does.

Also, the definition of a pyramid scheme is if no product is provided. Just because a company is a MLM, it does not mean it is a pyramid scheme. Legal Sheild offers products: legal services, identity theft protection, etc.

I am not an employee, IBO, or even a customer of Legal Shield. I am looking into it for identity theft protection. But I just wanted to point out that Career Builder is notorious for letting MLM and even scam jobs pull their resumes.

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#9 General Comment

Where did you get your copy of the Supposed contract

AUTHOR: Lover of Texas - ()

I am a Realtor by trade and have held an insurance license in the past.   It is amazing to me to see how people do NOT understand 1099 contractors.  I paid ALL my expenses as a realtor and had to abide by the rules of my broker in all things.  I had to purchase my own marketing materials as does every other realtor in the business.   Had to sign a similar contract with them also to abide  by their rules.

If you don't understand contract work, don't sign up for it.

Also someone made a remark in the other comments about Amway being a pyramid.  Another example of misinformecd public.  Pyramids are illegal and Amway has been through court challenges and won.  Amway is an MLM.   As is some of the divisions of Legal Shield but Harvard is in the broker division.  That is a different way of doing business.

Also if you knew anything about commission based sales, you would also know that insurance agents are paid the same way.   They have chargebacks.   Learn what you are talking about before you speak.

Oh, and by the way, I have reviewed Harvard's agreement:   it is NOT the same as you posted on this website.  Yours has much more "added" content.   Misleading and false.   Please correct and remove your erroneous posting.   Oh by the way, where in the contract you posted does it say you HAVE to buy Legalshield and pay money to work???????  Again erroneous information.


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#10 Consumer Comment

Pre-Paid Legal

AUTHOR: Giselle - ()

Years ago, I worked for a very large law firm where several of the attorneys had agreed or signed or whatever, to take on pre-paid legal services customers. These attorneys would NOT take calls from these clients and they would not take calls for the people that had signed the people up for services.  Cut to 5 years later. My husband's company was offered a pre-paid legal benefit to employees (not the same as the aforementioned company, I can't even remember the name). With great hesitation, I agreed for him to sign us up. Guess what! When I needed some legal advice and tried to utilize the service, NO ATTORNEY WOULD TAKE MY CALLS! I cancelled that s**t ASAP!

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#11 REBUTTAL Owner of company

bad business model?

AUTHOR: Fabian - ()

I know that Legal Shiled is a very good service. But I see Hrvard constantly using recruiters to try and hire reps here in Redding...constantly. I have asked for details about the viablity of their sales model and the recruiers are mum. It is obvious to me that having to cold call business owners to set up a meeting with their employess to try and also get them to sign up for the service, is tough...beyond a regular sales position. Not omly that, but the employer must be agreeable in putting the ID theft and or legal plan, as yet another employee deduction on their paycheck. I think this is a crummy sales model, and if it were not, I don't beleive that they would be constanlty hiring, or TRYING to hire reps in a small market such as Redding. I think they need to change that. Thanks.

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#12 UPDATE Employee

Ignorant & False Info about HRMC: an A Rated BBB Company

AUTHOR: MorowindmaN - ()

     I know Mark Riches and in all of my conversations and in conference calls with him, he has always been uplifting, selfless, honest and always tireless in helping others become successful. 

     The individual who wrote the complaint  - the source of this rebuttal - has never been an employee or agent of Harvard Risk Management and, in short, doesn't know what he is talking about. Please see:

(((link redacted))).

      Harvard Risk Management is a broker of Identity Theft Protection/Restoration, Prepaid Legal Services and Insurance Products and has been in business for 18 years. As a broker of services, a sales force is absolutely requisite and is the main way the products/services are sold.

     Most legitimate (commission plus lifetime residuals) sales involve the advancement of commissions and anyone who is knowlegeable on the subject realizes that if a customer decides he doesn't want the service, then the advanced commission needs to be returned. This is not a new concept and the online training given by HRMC explains and teaches about this necessity. By far, on the average, over half of the customers purchasing Legal Shield services stay as customers and depending on the quality of the information given by the sales agent and his service to the customer as many as 80 percent of customers stay on.

     If you are telling others about the importance and necessity of a product or service that you believe in, wouldn't it make sense that you would also buy that product or service ? Notwithstanding, Harvard Risk Management agents are not required to purchase HRMC products and services to remain as sales agents or managers. Additionally, a license is not required to sell LegalShield/ID Theft Protection/Restoration Services in most states.  

     How do you find quality sales people ?  You need to obtain resumes, place ads, be involved in social media and/or invite people you know personally. This is what Harvard Risk Management does.

    Sales is not for everyone. It takes a certain tenacity and persistance, high self confidence and people skills that are not had by many. All deserve to be employed and to earn money to provide for themselves. All honest work is honorable and has it's place and provides means for all.

      Harvard Risk Management is a great company and I am glad I have the opportunity to be affiliated with them. It is a friendly and helpful environment to work in.

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#13 Consumer Comment

Normal Course of Business

AUTHOR: signaturerealestate - ()

I have worked for a number of large, very legtimate corporations and I do not see anything wrong with this companys' overall contract for an independent contractor. 

It is straightforward, easy to understand, and reasonable. 

If big corporations do not have policies and procedures in place no one knows what the real deal is. 

So you either go with it, or not. I doubt this company would be in business for as long as it has been if the policies were not reasonable.

I have no association with this company, nor do i really know anything about their services, I just happened along this report and started reading the comments and thought I would share my thoughts.  

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#14 REBUTTAL Individual responds

JOIN MCA - Motor Club of america


I know you are doing your research on MCA, Motor Club Of America Don't Join Motor Club Of America until you call me. 

I have all the Info you need about this business.

You are going to Love Me :-) 
Have a bless day  
My name Is Tyrell my Cell # 909-581-2779 call me anytime this is a real business and its free to become an a associate and sale your products. this is not a PAY to PLAY program.
click on my link below

alsoyou can find me on
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#15 Consumer Comment

Doesn't sound real to me.

AUTHOR: Jason Nonya Business - ()

Kept seeing these folks advertise every single day on craigslist (normally a bad sign) so I gave them a call. Pretty much ignored everything they had to say after it was revealed I had to pay for the service myself before I could sell it AND would have to signup 7 more people before I could "Talk in front of groups and make over $4000/month" like the ad suggested.

Didn't realize "opportunities" like this were still even being marketed this day and age.
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#16 Consumer Comment

These people are just ignorant

AUTHOR: jim - (United States of America)

Harvard Risk Management markets and sells it's products just like group and individual health insurance.  NO MLM!  The problem with the people that get on this stupid Ripoff report site is that thay want a salary and do what most of them normally do and that is nothing.  

People have a great opportunity to start their own business with no one looking over their shoulder like the're use to.  Sure there is a little expense.  Not much.  Under a $100.  If you have to drive back and forth to work 5 days a week how much is that going to cost you in fuel and maybe parking.  And try asking your boss for gas money.  

Pre-paid legal now Legal Shield is sold as MLM but Harvard does NOT sell it that way.  Anyone that signs up for any of Harvard's products only get the products not a selling opportunity like MLM's are.

So just because it's not exactly like mommy and daddy said the world would be like doesn't mean you have to trash something you're so ignorant about.  Harvard is aces!!

So Shut Up!!!!!
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#17 General Comment

Recruited by Harard Benefits? Don't waste your time!

AUTHOR: FedupinNH - (United States of America)

Just got off 'the call' (it is recorded, by the way). Is Harvard Benefits legit? More or less. Do they sell a legitimate product? More or less. Is the way they recruit their agents to market their product less than forthright and very misleading? Absolutely!

Let me see if I have this right.....

1. I need to BUY the product to be able to sell it (I'm going to be a integral part of Harvard's long term growth, but they can't invest 36 bucks/month in me?

2. I will be required to bring in 7-10 individual contracts before I can start selling to businesses. So I need to prey on my friends and family just like every other MLM scheme.

3. I will be required to PAY one of their suppliers for training & sales materials.

4. I will be required to pay ALL of my incurred expenses.

5. Pretty much anyone with a pulse that is willing to pay the fees can be an agent. Their web site states they currently haver over 2000 agents in the US, with no territory exclusivity, and no cap on the amount of new agents they can add. Those defending Harvard try to liken it to franchising, but a franchise offers protected territories.

6. Commission dollars quoted as compensation for a sale are in fact based on the total value of the annual other words the commission payment is a draw or loan that must be paid back if the contract is terminated prematurely.

7. Last, but not least,  Harvard reserves the right to alter commission structure & rates, residual payments, and pretty much everything else in the contract AT THEIR SOLE DISCRETION.

My advice to anyone who signs on with Harvard Benefits is to immediately use the 'contract review' service and show the contract to a lawyer....he'll most likely tell you that you would be out of your mind to sign it! 
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#18 Consumer Comment

Interesting Info

AUTHOR: Dubbers - (United States of America)

Some interesting info about pyramids, they are not illegal, they are used everyday.  It's called Multi-Level Sales, you sell something and the person above you also makes money.

This company HRMC, I just spoke to someone that wanted to hire me, and needless to say all the negative reports that I just read, he pretty much said in no uncertain terms.  They say they want to hire managers, but that's not true.  IF you are a manager, you are soley commission, and you make your money off the people you have "recruited" to join the company.  Hmmmm, I think that's a pyramid don't you ?

If you only make money based off what your "team" does and how many people you sign up to join the company, that is a pyramid or multi-level sales.  Ever heard of Amway. Prime Example of a Pyramid.

This guy went on to tell me that when you become a manager, all you do is what he was doing, and that is recruit sales people.  So, in all reality your info is wrong, and the info you tried to rebutle is all correct.  That is in the contract they want you to sign. 

All I have to say is make your own decision, BUT before you decide to join the company, do a little research and see how much information is out there, you might be surprised as to what you find.
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#19 Consumer Comment

Outsider.... Come INSIDE

AUTHOR: Optimistic - (United States of America)

As a psychologist, I understand it is hard to think that there really are good things out there. This happens to be one of them.

I am not necessarily concerned with my patients and id theft, although it definitely is a concern, but I am concerned with legal issues. Everything as simple as a will to a court case, the cost is minimal. Personally speaking, I could afford more than the average person in a legal suit... but I paid a minimum amout for a maximum defense in a child support issue.

I am not sure what is meant by 'fact based' terms.... As for me, all is well.

Additionally, if this implies that someone is not meant for sales, then fine. As is, some are not meant for teaching, law enforcement, psychology, etc... but it doesn't mean that is a scam. It is a personal choice.

Finally, legal advice as an investment??? Oh, yes. Sign me up ten times..... you never know. I'd rather have that than car insurance.

Why knock something that doesn't affect you? Some people NEED these benefits. Let them be. If they are scammed, then that is their issue... although, I do not think that is the case... my experience has shown it to be a great resource.  Good luck to you. I feel that for you to have posted, you must be in a negative situation. I wish you the best.
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#20 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Very Angry - (U.S.A.)


Every statement I have written in a previous posting is factual, accurate and verifiable.  Call Harvard Risk Management Corporate and speak to customer relations.  They will verify my statements on cost and obligation.

My experience speaking to one of their recruiters was completely the opposite of any of the experiences of the complainers who have previously posted here.  The statements I've made regarding Harvard policies were told to me upfront by their recruiter.

I've chosen not to join because I don't want to sell, don't want to work for commission only, etc.

The products Harvard markets, not their own, are legit.  The need for these products is real.

Do you have to work hard to find prospects to sell to?  --- YES. 

Is this a pyramid or MLM scheme where the primary goal is to build under you NOT to sell the products -- NO!

As for the complainers who find the Harvard Contract unpalatable -- DON'T SIGN ONE!  DON'T JOIN UP!  YOU HAVE A CHOICE!

Seems the complainers do not understand the difference between working for a company as an employee and working for a company as an Independent Contractor

I suspect the complainers and possibly you have an agenda against Harvard.
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#21 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Outsider - (United States of America)

It's interesting how the pro- HRMC people have accused the rebuttals of not being fact based, but have offered no actual explanation for the points offered and backed up, such as contract terms, etc. 

It's also interesting how they imply that anyone who sees it for what it is simply isn't meant for sales or doesn't have what it takes. 

Add that to the fact that the one touting the greatness of the company did a PR spin on the requirement to buy a policy as an investment rather than a "you are the customer" situation. 

If it's such a great opportunity, why decry the facts or accuse others of trying to "ruin" someone else's opportunity by putting them out there. If it's really legitimate, the facts should support your case, not be a threat you feel you need to defend. 

The warning posts encourage others to really look into the facts for themselves and then make up their own mind while the HRMC people seem to be afraid people will. That's a warning in itself. Proceed with caution. 
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#22 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Very Angry - (U.S.A.)

Harvard is a 3rd Party Broker offering 2 legitimate products for sale owned by independent companies ---  LegalShield and Kroll ID Theft.

Harvard does not offer a job. It offers you an opportunity to become an Independent Agent affiliated with Harvard and be in business for yourself.

There is NO COST to become a Harvard Agent, get Trained and Certified to sell their products. Legal Shield requires Agent membership in order to sell their product and receive a commission for each membership sold.

Want to become your own boss and represent Carvel or McDonald's or Krispy Creme, etc? Get ready to fork over hundreds of thousands of dollars or more for a franchise.

Sales is not for everybody. Working as an Independent Agent is not for everybody. Commission only income earned is not for everybody. Being in business for yourself is not for everybody.

Some people like being hired drones, handed a weekly or bi-weekly check by an employer and being told what to do, when to do it, how to do it, etc by overbearing bosses.

The complainers who have posted here should not discourage those who
have sales ability, want to sell a legitimate product and be in business for themselves.

If the opportunity isn't for you, acknowledge that fact and move on with your life.

Don't ruin the opportunity for others.
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#23 General Comment

AUTHOR: jas_houston - (United States of America)


PrePaid Legal (now LegalShield aka Legal Shield) Info

LegalShield/Legal Shield (formerly Pre-Paid Legal) Whats been traditionally known as Pre-Paid Legal is now known as LegalShield. According to a LegalShield press release, the name change is part of a branding initiative. Mid Ocean partners (who acquired Pre-Paid Legal and took it private) believes there is untapped room for future growth.

Pros of switching to LegalShield Bad Branding is gone: The phrase Pre-Paid Legal has become associated with lawsuits and accusations of an illegal pyramid scheme. Justified or not, they have left the name Pre-Paid Legal with a negative impression. The name LegalShield is fresh and perhaps a better choice.

Less Transparency: Being privately owned, LegalShield will not require the same level of transparency it once did. No longer will the company be mired in SEC investigations over what many consider to be questionable (though probably common) accounting practices.

Cons of switching to LegalShield NYSE status gone: Being privately owned, LegalShield will not be able to boast an NYSE listing. This was one of the strengths Pre-Paid Legal boasted.

Short-Selling scapegoats gone: Being owned by a private equity firm, LegalShield doesnt have to worry about short-sellers trying to drive down its stock price. Of course, what this also means is that LegalShield wont have short-sellers as a scapegoat.

LegalShield moving forward It will be interesting to see how this all plays out. Will LegalShields recruiting practices remain similar to Pre-Paid Legal's? Will its marketing be as heavily dependent on its associates or will it find less controversial ways of marketing its product? Will the product change (I imagine the Legal Shield won't be going away). Will its retention rates be any better? Of course, being private means we likely wont be privy to things like membership retention rates.

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#24 Consumer Comment

Harvard Risk Management - Setting The Record Straight

AUTHOR: SetTheRecordStraight - (United States of America)

I am a Harvard Risk Management associate. 

Before becoming involved with HRMC, I thoroughly researched, evaluated and investigated the company and found it to be an extremely legitimate and ethical company, providing valuable and much needed services to the public.  The HRMC training program is outstanding and on-going, providing associates with all the tools necessary to be successful.   My experience with the company has proved this out many times over.  Based on my research, I believe your original report has several flaws the most egregious of which, are addressed below:

1.  Pyramids are illegal.  Harvard Risk Management Corporation (HRMC) has been in business since 1993.  It would not be possible for an 18 year old company to be a pyramid and remain in business.  In no way is HRMC a pyramid scheme.  To imply such in your negative report makes one suspect the credibility of that report.  HRMC does not use an MLM business model.  It uses an insurance company model to market employee benefit programs to companies of all sizes. 

2.  HRMC primarily focuses its marketing efforts on providing voluntary employee benefits to businesses of all sizes.  Associates who work on behalf of HRMC make group presentations to company employees to educate them about the dangers of ID Theft and how to protect themselves from becoming a victim.  We also introduce them to the Legal Shield and  ID Theft Shield protection plans.  Legal Shield provides individuals and families with legal representation that would otherwise be financially out of reach. 

3.  HRMC is a third party broker for several business products, two of which are Legal Shield and ID Theft Shield.  Legal Shield (formerly known as Pre-Paid Legal) is a 40 year old company.  Companies don't stay successfully in business for 40 years if they are rip-offs.   Legal Shield has been ranked as one of Forbes' 200 Best Small Companies in America for six of the last ten years.  There are currently more than 1.5 million members of Legal Shield in addition to over 50,000 corporate clients.

4.  Legal Shield was recently purchased by Mid Ocean Partners for $650 million dollars.  Companies like Mid Ocean Partners (look them up) do not invest that kind of money in companies engaged in any unethical or illegal activities.  They invest that kind of money because they know the business is sound, proven and providing a much needed service to its members.

5.  Legal Shield has a national network of some of the top law firms in the country to represent it's more than 1.5 million members in North America.  Prestigious law firms such as these do not engage in illegal practices such as pyramids nor do they affiliate themselves with illegitimate companies.

6.  The company behind the ID Theft Shield product is Kroll Fraud Solutions (another 40 year old company).  Kroll is the world's leading risk consulting company.  It was founded by Jules Kroll in 1972 and has its headquarters in New York.
7.  Kroll is a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange with annual revenues in excess of one billion dollars.  Kroll operates in 65 cities and 33 countries with over 3800 employees.  Kroll maintains a superior expertise in monitoring credit and restoring the lives of identity theft victims through the ID Theft Shield product now being marketed by HRMC.

8.  As for the remainder of your negative report, it is also factually incorrect and contains numerous errors.  But as the author of that report says, "Don't take my word for it", consider the facts listed above, do your own research (as I did), and draw your own conclusions.  My objective here is to challenge the Original Report which is fraught with misinformation and misleading allegations. 

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#25 Author of original report

Independent Agent Agreement - HRMC

AUTHOR: Insider - (United States of America)

Found via public resources. Note that you must pay them for any materials you use, agree to pay them for what is "needed". You agree that the advanced commission is to be used only for business and not your personal use. Basically, that the bulk of your income is only to be put back in the business, not for yourself. So you are working merely to put money back into their company, not to use any of it to pay bills, feed your family, etc.  Also, note the loan you must repay on demand, when memberships drop and google how frequently that happen.

Note that they can enforce at will, and no matter what they tell you verbally or in writing, what this document says is what counts. If you have an issue, you have signed away your right to class action (what kind of company needs that clause) and will have to go to Dallas and be subject to arbitration there.

If you quit or get fired, you are not entitled to any commission. That means if you sell $1,000 worth on Monday and are fired/quit on Tuesday, they don't have to pay you a dime on that sale, or any previous sales you haven't been paid for. Much less the much touted renewal income. They can also at will change how much you will earn without notice. Read this carefully before signing.  

Harvard Risk Management Corporation Independent Agent Agreement
Policies & Procedures
1.  An Agent is an independent contractor and does not have a franchise, distributorship or other exclusive right to sell arrangement with HRMC. HRMC reserves the right to accept or reject any Agent
Agreement in its sole discretion. An Agent is not an employee for federal tax purposes or any other purposes. An Agent is neither an agent, partner, nor involved in a joint venture with HRMC. The Agent
will be responsible for all costs or liabilities incurred by the Agent in the sale and/or distribution of all HRMC products/services. The Agent shall not enter into any agreements or make any purchases in the
name of, or on behalf of, HRMC.
2.  An Agent at his/her own expense (if any) shall be responsible for the filing of any and all reports required by local law or public authority with respect to the sale of any products/services marketed by
HRMC and shall abide by any and all federal, state, county, and municipal laws, rules, regulations, and ordinances with respect to all sales. The Agent is responsible for providing HRMC his/her Social
Security number or Federal Tax Identification number for tax reporting purposes.
3.  An Agent does not have the authority to waive, change, or modify a HRMC product or service in any way. Furthermore, no modification of any service is binding upon HRMC unless authorized in
writing at the corporate offices of HRMC by an authorized officer of the company.
4. Advertising Policy:  (a) Only advertising and promotional material that is pre-printed, pre-approved, and properly licensed by HRMC may be purchased or used in the promotion or sale of HRMC
products/services. An Agent agrees to pay for all supplies and marketing materials needed. Supplies should be obtained directly from HRMC
If an Agent wishes to return supplies and obtain a refund,
he/she must return the supplies in usable condition and request a refund within 15 days of the purchase date. If a Agent wishes to exchange a supply item for another, he/she must return the item in usable
condition and request an exchange within 30 days of the purchase date. Obsolete material will not be
eligible for refund or exchange.
unsolicited telemarketing, and unsolicited advertisements to fax machines and/or any other method
prohibited by applicable federal or state law. In addition, an Agent initiating the transmission of unsolicited commercial electronic mail (spam), agrees to comply with all HRMC policies regarding
such advertising, as well as to applicable state and federal laws governing such transmissions.
(b) An Agent may not contact prospects by using auto dialers,
HRMC is authorized to do business, except in those states where an insurance or other license or appointment is required unless the Agent meets those requirements. However, an Agent may recruit
other Agents in any state in which HRMC is authorized to do business, provided the prospective Agent is properly licensed in that State if so required for the sale of products/services.
There are no territory exclusives. Any Agent may sell products/services in any state in which
6.  The Agent and the Agents spouse, or similar relationship, will normally be regarded as one Agent. However, a spouse or similar relationship may complete a separate Agent Agreement (and submit the
necessary fee), provided the Agreement is sponsored by the same person or entity. Persons must be 18 years of age or older to execute an Agent Agreement.
7.  In the event of the death of a Agent who is a party to this agreement solely in his/her individual name, all commissions due the Agent will be paid according to his/her last will and testament as
admitted to probate or, if there is no will or other instrument providing otherwise, the rights of the Agent under this agreement shall be deemed to be owned (i) if the Agent has a spouse, as joint tenants
with rights of survivorship with the spouse; or (ii) if the Agent does not have a spouse, as may be provided by the applicable law of descent and distribution. If the Agent's spouse succeeds to the
business and has been actively participating in the business at the time of death, the spouse will have the option to continue in the same role as the deceased Agent.
8.  An Agent Agreement with HRMC may be terminated as follows:
notice by the Agent; (b) By HRMC with thirty (30) days written notice to the Agent if the level of
persistency of the Agents
acceptable; (c) Immediately by HRMC for actions or statements by a Agent which HRMC, in its sole discretion, determines to be contrary to its best interests, including, without limitation, if an Agent:
violates the terms of the Agent Agreement or these Policies and Procedures as in effect from time to time, misrepresents the companys name, violates any other HRMC policy, solicits memberships by
using the name of the Provider Attorney firm, makes
contrary to HRMC literature, reveals any HRMC trade secrets, including without limitation names of Agents, members or corporate accounts.
(a) At any time upon written
business consistently remains below a level considered by HRMC to be
product/service claims or earnings claims
9.  An Agent who terminates his/her Agent Agreement or who is terminated by HRMC will, effective on the date of termination, no longer be entitled to any bonuses or commissions, including
renewals, advanced or earned, personal or organization
10.  Advance commissions for sales produced by the Agent or in the Agents organization shall be paid only when sales of HRMC products/services have occurred, and shall be earned only as fees on HRMC
products/services are received by HRMC. HRMC reserves the right to change commission advance rates, adjust advances for membership cancellations, pay commissions on an as-earned basis or to place
commissions on hold in its sole discretion. Any sums advanced to the Agent shall create a debit balance which will be a loan to the Agent from HRMC.  This balance will normally be repaid by
withholding earned commissions, including renewals, but the Agent is ultimately liable for repayment upon demand by HRMC.
A Agent may request commissions be paid on less than a 100% advance
basis. Advance commissions are made in connection with the business of selling HRMC products or services and the Agent agrees that they are not for the Agents personal, family or household purposes.
11. HRMC reserves the right at any time to no longer accept new membership sales or Agent recruitments from any Agent, and to adjust or change any marketing plan and incentive program and at
any time without prior notice. HRMC may add, change or terminate any services offered by HRMC to
any or all Agents, at any time, in
communications, newsletters, or otherwise.
whole or in part, including but not limited to supplies,

12.  No HRMC products or services may be sold or offered in combination with any other product or service without, prior written approval from an authorized officer of HRMC.
13.  The failure of HRMC to insist upon strict compliance with any of the Policies and Procedures herein shall not be deemed to be a continuous waiver in the event of any future breach or
waiver of the

Policies and Procedures.
and Procedures and any other marketing materials of HRMC, these Policies and Procedures shall control.
In the event of any conflict or inconsistency between these Policies
14.  In the event that a provision of the Agent Agreement or these Policies and Procedures is held to be invalid or unenforceable, such provision shall be reformed only to the extent necessary to make it
enforceable, and the balance of the Agreement and Policies and Procedures will remain in full force and effect.

15.  The Agent Agreement and Policies and Procedures will be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas. The Agent Agreement and Policies and
amendment may be made, either written or oral, without the signature of an authorized Home
Office officer of HRMC, provided that these Policies and Procedures may be amended from time to time by HRMC by publication in a means reasonably available to Agents generally, including by
publication in periodic communications to Agents or on the HRMC website. All disputes and claims relating to HRMC the Agent Agreement, these Policies and Procedures and any other HRMC policies,
products and services, the rights and obligations of an Agent and HRMC or any other claims or causes of action between the Agent or HRMC or any of its officers, directors, employees or affiliates, whether
in tort or contract,
shall be settled totally and finally by arbitration in Dallas,
Texas in accordance with the Commercial Arbitration Rules of the American Arbitration Association, including the optional rules
for emergency measures of protection. If any Agent files a claim or counterclaim against HRMC or any of its officers, directors, employees or affiliates in any such arbitration, an Agent shall do so only on an
individual basis and not with any other Agent or as a part of a class actio
n. Judgment on any award may be entered in the Dallas County District Court or in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas. The Agent consents to the jurisdiction and venue of such arbitration and
such courts.

constitute the entire
agreement between the Agent and
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