Report: #715268

Complaint Review: PMA USA/conseco

  • Submitted: Thu, April 07, 2011
  • Updated: Fri, March 01, 2013
  • Reported By: anonymous — spartanburg South Carolina United States of America
  • PMA USA/conseco
    11825 N Pennsylvania St # C
    carmel, Indiana
    United States of America

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

I know that if there are a few of us that actually report, there are hundreds more that have been used and abused by this company.
PMA preys on new insurance agents promising them big money. I'm embarrassed to say I'm not a new agent ,I am seasoned and i still got took. Being an insurance agent, I am very much aware of the expenses envolved in my occupation. Gas, car, liability insurance, leads etc. not to mention the self disipline, unpredictable income from one week to the next. It is a tough industry to get started in and to stay in.   Run as fast as you can from this insurance job, they are unethical and unscrupulous. You will not make any money, even if you make sales.   When I think about what they are getting away with, and ruining peoples lives in this economy they should  be reported to every department of insurance in the country. They should be shut down and not be allowed to treat agents like this. I don't know how they sleep at night. And yes all those managers know how PMA USA/CONSECO operate. They are scared to death to leave themselves because they know that they would get charge backs as well if they have been there less than 5 yrs. 
THis is how they work: they recruit you, you memorize your script, run you around your whole state running up gas and hotel bills. you make a couple of sales and may break even. You stay 3 months or so, you want to quit b/c your exhausted, broke and disappointed. They keep your sales and charge you back the advanced commissions, due to some section in your contract that I still am not able to locate.
This grows their book of business and and it cost them nothing! They gain policies by recruiting and terminating. It's a vicious cycle. This is a form of money laundering. They pay, charge back, and keep the profits. The irony is as an insurance agent I have to take anti money laundering classes! An insurance sale is a tough sale no matter what product you represent. Carriers need agents to show and explain and impress the need for insurance. That is why they pay commissions. I don't get paid unless I sell. Most agent are 1099, which means, no salary, no benefits, no sick time or vacation, it's usually feast or famine. 
  I sold over a dozen policies with pma, most all of them were pretaxed, which means they are locked in that premium until their next enrollment period and had several groups i sold/opened during my short time. I got a termination letter in dec and just wrote business for nov effective. No reason, they knew they would get advances back by as mentioned before small print in contract. It was just spiteful and unethical. This had never happened to me before with an insurance company. If I was terminated, it was because of no production after being with them a year or two.
 In my experience, the definition of a chargeback was if for some reason the policy was cancelled, death, not taken etc. the monies you received were expected back usually minus the months that the insured was paying premiums or your incoming commissions covered the loss.  My policies were still in force and I got charged back for all I wrote. 2 yrs later I got a letter telling me my policies' premiums were under $250 mth. So they had  received premiums on l my sales all that time. That's just wrong on so many levels! Of course after my termination, they turned me over to a collection attorney who added another $500 to my balance, my credit was ruined, they reported me to Vector one and I got 1099 from the year a was with them and another the next year that I wasn't with them. Every time I asked them to send me validation of debt, they would send me my commission statements. HA! I called conseco and they couldn't talk to me, referred me back to col. atty. THey would not show me where any of my clients had cancelled because they didn't. If this has happened to anyone else, i feel that they are violating the unfair business practices act and maybe you can pursue them in small claims court or if enough of us report their behavior, a class action suit.  This company should be banned from all job recruiting sites and every insurance agent should be warned. 
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/07/2011 07:51 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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#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Rainbows, little puppies and fluffy clouds


 I was an insurance agent for 10 years for PMA. Right now it's all rainbows, little puppies and fluffy clouds for you. Let me tell you about your free time you brag so much about spending with your young kids. I too had young kids when I started. The 4 day work week was great. after a while you start getting phone calls for claims. I filtered 20-30 a week when I quit. Cause you see the company denies every claim at first. So I would sit on the phone for hours on Fridays with Conseco listening to the corporate BS we didn't receive a pathology report, the cpt code is wrong, you name it I heard it.  In the end the company makes it so hard to receive Money owed for claims that your client hates you, your free time will be spent fighting a company you work for and by the way that financial freedom you talk about will gone not long after you are.  Cause you see the management structure don't care about you, the company don't care about the clients. Think about it how many people have you seen quit before the vesting period?  who gets that money?  Oh and when your gone some new agent will go in the same houses you did tell them they are the new manager in that area and we got a better deal for you. By by renewals.  good luck remember potsitive mental attitude... 


Happy tuesday

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#2 Author of original report

PMA Trail of Tears

AUTHOR: anonymous - ()

Hi J,

As the original author of this complaint I have received every rebuttal for the last 4 years from this post. I wish I had better news of my outcome, but because they had vectored me and I have carriers that do a yearly background check I had to pay them off. I didn't have the time and energy to pursue legal action. I can only hope that these testimonies spared many trusting hard working souls from the same agony. It grieves me that they have continued their same tactics. I wish you luck in your fight with the attorney. Maybe someone else has suggestions if they took legal action and won.


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#3 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Did anything come of the chargebacks?

AUTHOR: Hollywood27kt - ()

Hello Sir, 

I read your report and found that you are in a similar situation that i am in. I found that i too am getting charged back for commission paid to me and wanted to know if you had any further information on what came of the chargebacks? The reason i am asking is because i just got a call from their "Attorney" and he was very rude telling me he was going to take me to court over it. I have not fully recovered from the debt that the job itself put me in and have no money to speak of and am wondering if they ended up making you pay, or if it just fizzled out. If you are still paying attention to this thread, i would appreciate some advice. 



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#4 UPDATE Employee

I did not feel preyed upon

AUTHOR: Matt - ()

I was working at a large Bank when the recession hit, at the time I was not endanger of loosing my Job in fact I was working my way up the ladder rapidly.  I found myself killing myself for a company that really just regarded me as a number.  I put my resume out there to see if there were any other opportunities possibly one where I could create a career where I could be more than a number.

I met with a gentleman in a hotel conference room who challenged me to become a part of something greater than myself while helping people during their greatest time of need.  I asked many questions that ranged from how the pay works and what was required of me.  He simply responded that nothing was required of me and that I would be an independent contractor. All they could do is motivate me and if I was not afraid of hard work they could teach me how to follow a work schedule and a marketing method that has unpatrolled results.  

I am glad to report that here I am 3.5 years later and it was everything they promised.  I have had the opportunity to find financial independent, travels to exotic local; my wife and I have made some lifelong friends.  However, I must say by far that the best gift that this opportunity has afforded me is the gift of time.  I am able to spend uninterrupted, quality time with my wife and three small children.  

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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

To Say that Performance Matters Associates ,PMA-Conseco, is a scam or rip off are not quite strong enough of words to use.

AUTHOR: Brian - ()


 I’d like to start off by saying I believe Conseco does have a good product and when I first went to work with PMA Conseco it was actually it was a great experience, I worked well with all the managers and really liked all the people I met with the company. I traveled around a lot but I enjoyed that, so it was not a problem at the time except for the fact I was paying all my travel expenses. I would later figure that after paying for all these traveling expenses I wasn’t really making as much money as I had thought. I did justify this fact however, because I figured that it would all pay off at the end when I would start to receive my residual income.

 Within a short time I was promoted to manager where my commissions where increased and I was also making an override on the people beneath me and at the time this felt like a great achievement after only being in insurance industry a short time. Because I was now a manager however I was required to bring on new recruits, I struggled with this because I was knew the average person was probably not going to succeed, but there was so much pressure being put on me to do so, I felt had no choice.

  The reason I left PMA was because the region I was working in started to run scarce of good companies for me to enroll and my regional manager started giving the more desirable companies to enroll to the new hires wanting me to go out and open my own groups. After a couple of months of struggling financially I had no choice but to leave because with PMA Conseco I was captive so I could not work with another insurance company at the same time as PMA, at this point I had to except an offer from another insurance company; if PMA had let me I would have worked with both companies.

 Shortly before I left PMA I was talking with one of the other agents (who had worked with PMA longer than I had) about leaving and when I did she warned me that all the other agents who had worked with PMA Conseco, after leaving that Conseco had put them into debt, needless to say I was not prepared. The amount of debt that they claimed I owed was almost as much as what I had earned working for them, plus remember; I had all those expenses I had to pay when traveling. Several months after leaving PMA I started receiving phone calls from debt collectors who were claiming to be attorneys, threating to take me to court if I didn’t resolve my debt. So I started reaching out to the other agents that I had worked with at PMA and ALL of them were having the same experience that I was having. So we all got together for breakfast one morning where there was about 15 of us and we all discussed filing a class action lawsuit but never did; we all seemed to get too involved with our new jobs and went on with our lives. I look back today and wish we had pursued or quest for judgment because one person I know actually did. From what I understand they will never let it go to court because they will have to produce their records proving the debt and they will never do that because they don’t want their scam to be reviled, however the debt will be put on your credit report if you don’t fight it.

 In my time there the average agent worked with PMA for about 3-6 months and was put into debt anywhere from $2000 to $7000. The longer one worked with PMA or the more money one made, the higher their debt was. I worked with PMA quite a bit longer so my debt is quite a bit more than the average.  The sad thing is I know of a couple of people who went ahead and paid off their debt, one paid $7000 putting their debt on a credit card; he had only worked with PMA for about 3 months. I also worked there long enough to be vested, meaning I was to receive residual income, however I have not seen a dime of it and to make matters worse the following year where I did not work for PMA at all, not receiving any type of compensation, they had the nerve to send me a Form 1099 for an amount well over $10,000 of compensation for that year (it was about the same amount as my debt actually). This is why they put such a great emphasis on recruiting many new agents. Each new person recruited creates a new financial opportunity by putting those people into debt. I have never been witness to a machination so Machiavellian. To say that PMA Conseco is a scam or a rip off are not quite strong enough of words to use, they are the equivalent of a Ponzi Scheme. I believe Financial Terrorist would be a much more appropriate phrasing of words in describing PMA Conseco.

 Since my days with PMA I have had success working with several other group benefit enrollment companies that have paid well, pay my expenses when I travel, including but not limited to my airfare, rental car, hotel and mileage, and never expected me to be captive and I have never received any charge backs of any kind. A few of these reputable Companies would be EOI, Univers and Hodges & Mace.

 If you do go to work with PMA Conseco depending on what region you’re in, you could have an opportunity to make a lot of money or really waste a lot of your time, but no matter what the case, always beware of the consequences of leaving the firm known as PMA USA.  

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#6 UPDATE EX-employee responds

PMA Conseco

AUTHOR: Michael Broderick - ()

Get in touch with me via Facebook - Mick Broderick, Columbus, OH. Pic of a boy holding a pint of Guinness.
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#7 UPDATE EX-employee responds


AUTHOR: Mike12 - ()

If possible please get in contact with me, I may also have to hire a lawyer and id like to here your story. 
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#8 UPDATE Employee

Happy Employee

AUTHOR: New Employee - (United States of America)

As a newer agent that is contracted with PMA, I read the above report- several times, in fact. I had resigned from my previous position, which was salaried with a very fair compensation package. I was hesistant to start with PMA, but then realized I had nothing to lose- it was a great decision to move forward.

I have been working with the district, regional, and state managers. The training was paid for, all I needed to do was come up with 180 dollars for my exam and my insurance licensure. Managers were great about covering meals, splitting hotel costs, and even driving and paying for gas during training.

I cannot dispute your experience, and I am sorry it did not work out for you. What I can say is that my first week on my own, my commission and first week performance bonus was $4100.00. Although this is probably not a "typical week", my second week provided me with $2000.00.

The potential is definitely there, and if you are thinking about a career with PMA, I suggest you try it. I am happy to report that this has been a positive experience, working with great people.

Also keep in mind, that for every bad experience, a person is going to tell 11-15 people, and people with positive experiences are only goin got tell 1-3 people. Not everybody is going to have a positive experience--- not with this company, and not with any other company, but keep in mind that for every negative experience, there are countless positive experiences.
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#9 UPDATE EX-employee responds

It is a scam..

AUTHOR: former employee - (United States of America)

Conseco / Green Tree Financial/ CNO Financial, Bankers Life, Colonial Penn.. these are all the same company...
... They recruit young agents and burn through them as fast as they come thru the door.
Look at the retention ratios with this "boiler room" ... Watch the " Inside Edition" piece and put togeather all of the complaints - just on this board - it is the same over and over  - from all over the country... that is what you need to pay attention to.
It is company policy to go after former agents commissions or "advances" - the agency management goes after the former agents written policy's.... and re- writes them which produces additional commission (that the client pays for)and then goes after the former agents earned commissions.
I know of at least 12 others that Bankers has done this to. It is part of their operation.  This company should be shut down. I am embarrassed to say I ever worked there. I am still in the industry. 
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#10 General Comment

Is PMA USA a real opportunity?

AUTHOR: Is PMA USA a real opportunity? - (United States of America)

After several years as an independent contractor for PMA, I have been very satisfied and have seen this company change people's lives!  I can say that it is not for everyone and have seen people recruited that lacked work ethic or had too many personal problems to even function in any work environment.  Once I learned about the products and experienced how they made a difference in people's lives I was All IN......  I continue to grow and get better and must say that the training and pay has been wonderful.  It seems that every company in the world has a complaint, I typed in every major company I could think of and they all have complaints.  I wish the majority who are satisfied would leave their comments on here too.  Thanks PMA for a great job and opportunity!
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#11 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Conseco, Bankers Life, Colonial Penn.....

AUTHOR: former employee - (United States of America)

As a former employee with this outfit, this report is spot on... What I find very interesting is the fact that ALL of the reports on this operation are the same, poor management, churning clients, replacing policy's when an agent leaves so they can then go after former agents for 'advancements" ... The whole operation is a scam... It's no wonder that  INSIDE EDITION Investigated Sales Tactics of  Bankers Life

Then go to YouTube and search 'Bankers Life and Casualty' - and look for the 'Inside Edition' version/. The video was posted in 2004, but the COMMENTS are RECENT.. This company was investigated, and found to be quite heartless toward the elderly, as well as using inappropriate practices for 'interviews' and training|.
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#12 UPDATE EX-employee responds

PMA / CONSECO / Washington National

AUTHOR: Michael Broderick - (Virgin Islands (US))

I spent three months with this company about two years ago and am still raw with rage when I think back on it all. I am angry at myself for being suckered in. I am angry at the company for the way I was recruited.

I guess I learned a thing or two about the big bad world so I am posting this in order to save someone else the hassle. I am also posting this to let you know that you may feel free to contact me regarding this matter in order to hear my story. Also - if you are fighting a lawsuit (and I was threatened with one) please get in touch and I will give you advice - I would be only too delighted to testify.

Yeppers - ended up having to hire a lawyer for myself to get me out of a mess. 

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#13 UPDATE Employee

Very happy working for PMA!

AUTHOR: PMA happy employee - (United States of America)

For each employee that didn't have a good experience I can assure you that there are thousands more that did.  I am sure of this because I am one of them.  I started with no prior experience but good work ethic and a burning desire to succeed.   This is THE best job I have ever had and the best insurance company I have ever worked for!

I had good days and bad days like with any sales job but the good days far outweighed the bad.  They provide you with outstanding leads and they never hold you back when moving up in the company since if you don't make money- no one does!

The only time there would ever be a charge back is when you are advanced commission BEFORE the company actually gets paid on it.  Ex) Customer pays a month, you get paid for 6 months.

So basically this is an advanced temporary loan and if you spend the money right away the policy is canceled you will be asked to repay it, no different than any other bank or insurance company if you spend money before it is yours.

This has been the most supportive working environment I have ever been in and I would personally recommended this job to all of my friends and family, many of them already do!

One more thing to add from a credible source:
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#14 UPDATE Employee

An opportunity for all

AUTHOR: PMAUSA / Dallas, TX - (United States of America)

Performance Matters Associates (PMAUSA) offers an outstanding opportunity for anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit and strong work ethic.  We provide you the sales system, training, income, awards and recognition while you build your own business as an independent contractor insurance agent. 

Our system has proven successful for many folks who are making more money than they ever thought possible, building renewal income for their future while helping Americans through the outstanding supplemental health and life products we are proud to market for Washington National Insurance Company. 

This business is not for everyone perhaps your personal lifestyle does not allow you to commit, perhaps you just dont have what it takes to be a true self-starter with that entrepreneurial spirit.   
Were sorry for those who did not succeed with us and sincerely wish you the best for the future. However, what we absolutely know for sure and stand behind 100% is that if you combine a strong commitment to working the system with all the tools and resources we offer success is indeed achievable!
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#15 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Me TOO/lied to at time of recruitment and discriminated against by PMA

AUTHOR: A. Surrena - (United States of America)

I have read your report and I just completed my complaint against this company.  I too am a seasoned agent and no one has provided me the information about these supposed cancelled policies.  I want to file a joint lawsuit against this company.  Please keep your hand in the pot as some would say because I have found multiple stories that are so similar it is scary!

This company should not even be allowed to be in business.
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