Report: #419036

Complaint Review: Platinum Benefit Group

  • Submitted: Mon, February 02, 2009
  • Updated: Mon, February 09, 2009
  • Reported By: Sugar Grove Ohio
  • Platinum Benefit Group
    16805 US HWY 19 North Suite A
    Clearwater, Florida

Platinum Benefit Group DO NOT EVER GIVE BANK INFO OVER THE PHONE TO ANYBODY Clearwater Florida

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: A couple of pieces of inaccurate information.

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

I think this is the same company that cleaned out my account a few years ago. I bounced over a thousand dollars in checks. I found out when I went to the bank on a Friday to deposit my husband's paycheck and fell to my knees and cried. $29.95 for a secured credit card cost me my credit and a downward spiral from then on. To this day, I can't get a free checking account because of the reports on Telecheck Systems. I have paid everything off now.

I got a phone call from the FBI about two months later wanting my bank statements for prosecuting them. I cooperated fully when they provided creditials in person. I never heard about it again.

Then today, a lovely Monday morning with the children home from school, I get a phone call from these guys. They tell my 12 year old son that he was approved for a credit card. They must have thought he was his father. He said to talk to mom of course. Then they wanted to tell me that I am approved for a credit card with a $5000 limit. I don't make that in a month. Wow, ok, I'll bite. Tell me more. So they transfer me to a verifier that proceeds to ask for my checking account information. He didn't even know my name. I asked to shut up because he was talking so fast. I told him that I do not give that info out over the phone, especially when they called me and I did not call them. He immediately hung up on me.

Thank goodness for caller ID. I called them back and they answered with "Hello". Not some formal "Thank you for calling Platinum Benefit Group. How may I help you?" I talked to a guy that was a very fast talker and would not shut up when he figured out that I am on to him. I asked him for the name, address, and phone number to the place. He had to repeat it three times because he was so fast and was typing into my notebook. Then he hung up on me too.

I thought about calling the FBI but they did not commit a crime because I stopped it before it started. My bank suggested that I post this on here so that others will learn from my previous mistakes.

After investigating with my bank manager, we found out that they are merely providing services that you probably already get through your bank and employer. Their website shows a PrePaid Mastercard. My bank gave me one for free. It's called a debit card. It takes money out of my checking account. They also advertise dental services, prescription discounts, and pre-paid legal services. My employer has health insurance. The employee assistance program has prepaid legal benefits. The roadside assistance they have is available from AAA for as little as $54. I just looked it up.

Platinum Benefit Group
16805 US HWY 19 N Suite A
Clearwater FL 33764

Sugar Grove, Ohio
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 02/02/2009 09:14 AM 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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#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

A couple of pieces of inaccurate information.

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

This report is full of assumptions and wrong information from the filer. I used to work for Platinum Benefit Group here in Clearwater, Florida, and can vouch that the majority of the information provided is incorrect.

Now I'm not saying that the Platinum Benefit Group is an outstanding company. They are selling prepaid mastercards at ridiculously high prices, and their sales pitch may seem deceptive. But if you listen carefully, and don't simply ASSUME things, you'd know exactly what we sell, and for how much.

In the first paragraph, you claim that PBG charged you $29.95 for a secured credit card years ago which devastated you financially. PBG has never sold secured credit cards, and has never charged $29.95 for anything. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of telemarketing companies out there that sell mastercards (or visas), and for this lady to assume it was PBG is simply wrong. We get this all the time at work. We call people, and they accuse us of taking an amount of money out of their account that we've never charged. Then we have to explain that there is more than one Mastercard company out there.

As for you bouncing checks, don't even try blaming someone else for that. With the widespread availability of internet banking, as well as ATMs, there is no excuse to not know how much is in your account at any one moment.

Now as for your most recent experience. When we call someone, all we have on our screen is a name, address, and phone number. So we ask "Is this Mr. Jones" (as an example). If your son said yes, we would have gone ahead with the pitch. At the end of the first introduction pitch (called "fronting" in the business), we ask "are you 18, a U.S. citizen, and do you have an active checking acct?" Your son should have said "no" (if he did, good, and I assume he gave the phone to you). We never once tell ANYONE that they are approved for a CREDIT card. We say Mastercard. If you assume, again, your fault. Deceptive? Yes. Illegal? No.

We would never tell you that we had you approved for a $5000 limit. Not only would we (as sales associates) be written up for that, but the company itself would be shutdown if we outright lied like that. Every call is recorded, and whenever someone does get signed up, their bank can request a copy of the recording if the customer thinks they were scammed.

If you tell us you will not give your acct info over the phone, we will either A) hang up on you, or B) transfer you to an automated system that explains how you can get our card through the mail without giving out any personal info on the phone. Now if the sales agent hung up on you, it's probably because you were being rude and wouldn't let him explain things. Trust me, some people simply will not listen.

Now as for what PBG DOES offer. PBG sells pre-paid mastercards with discounts and benefits attached to it. Sure, you have a debit card, but that debit card is linked directly to your checking acct, and can overdraft your acct. The PBG card is not linked directly to your acct, and will never overdraft. Not only that, the PBG pre-paid mastercard allows you to establish a positive payment history. What that means is that our affiliate banks will consider you twice a year for traditional, unsecured credit cards once they see that you have spending habits with our card, and they'll make those considerations WITHOUT looking at your credit report. The card also comes with a prescription discount club, dental discount club, free legal (not prepaid legal) advice, free medical advice, and roadside assistance.

Now if you have good credit and can get credit cards, fine. If you already have AAA, or medical insurance, fine. A lot of people do not.

With that being said, PBG is still deceptive and a bit pricey, so if you DO want the card, make sure you fully understand it.

I really wish people would simply listen to sales pitches carefully and ask questions about anything they did not understand, instead of assuming things. If you do these two simple things, I promise you, no company will ever "rip you off".
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