Recently I was approached by a young couple recruiting for Primerica, the woman was pregnant and they had their two year old daughter with them. They approached me while I was selling my artwork at an art fair in Troutdale, Oregon. The woman commented on some of the cards I had made that quoted scripture from the Bible, then she asked me if my artwork was my main sorce of income.
Actually I sell my art on the internet and at two monthly fairs, along with a part time job doing paperwork on my home computer for a trucking company so that I can stay home with my daughter.
The woman and I conversed on the cost of raising children and she brought up the subject of her own business. She was extremely vague, only really saying that she worked in the Financial field. She promoted her company as a good choice for stay at home mothers looking to make a few extra dollars to support their family.
I was somewhat interested so I set up an appointment to meet her for coffee. She didn't show up due to illness, but sent along her husband. He was a very nice and charming man and he showed me several professional looking brochures and explained in vague terms what Primerica does and what I would do as a representative. He bought me coffee, and bought a juice for my two year old who I had brought along.
The more he talked about the hard work involved, the recruiting, the meetings, and so forth the more I relised that this company is absolutely not a good idea for anyone that wants to spend any quality time with their children.
However, he sounded very convincing about how much extra income potential Primerica could bring to my family. He said that it was normal to be a little hesitant and he assured me that he and his wife would go with me on my first recruiting attempts as support.
Then he told me I should go to their next meeting at an office in a mall on Saturday. When I told him I had difficulties traveling that far away he told me that his wife and he would pick me up at my home at 8am and get me home by 1pm. He told me I would need to find a baby sitter. This didn't sit well with wish to be a stay at home mother who is very involved in the raising of her child. Still, he convinced me to attempt to find a sitter and I agreed to be picked up Sat.
While I gave him my information to be contacted and picked up, with my phone number and my home address, he or she never once gave me their phone number or a way to contact them for information or to cancel.
Once I got home I immediatly googled Primerica, and wouldn't you know it, the second link given after Primerica's website itself was the link for this website at ripoffreport.com ..that was my first major red flag.
I began to research this company, reading posts from current and ex employees and others. Most of what I found was extremely negative. I also read the text of a lawsuit that was filed against them after an investigation in the 90s that resulted in a $175,000 civil money penalty awarded to the US Treasury.
During my research into their company I learned about the fee of $199 that is charged for their "training" and literature. Something that was never mentioned by either the wife or husband in either of my two meetings with them. A fee that I could never pay since I can barely afford to feed and cloth my child and myself as it is. I also learned in my research that I would not earn any significant amount of money without being licensed. Something that brings an additional cost. Being licensed was also never mentioned in either encounter.
The woman representative had touched on religion in our first encounter, and I've since read reports that many of the meetings for Primerica around the nation have also had religious overtones. Because of this I consulted my bible and biblegateway.com about what God might say about this company and its practices. Did you know that the words insurance and insure are not mentioned in the Bible?
In fact the Bible encourages people to not worry about their worldly future. Matthew 6:24-34 and Psalm 56:3-4 and 1 Peter 5:6-11 are just a few places in the Bible that encourage us to bring our anxiety to God and trust in Him. Isn't buying insurance kind of like saying you only trust in God just so far. Like saying, just in case God doesn't take care of me I'll set aside this money. I suppose Primerica would rather I invest in their products than tithe to my church.
After my research into Primerica I felt very ripped off and outraged at how they were ripping other people off. I feel like I was robbed of an afternoon that I could have otherwise used to actually earn my family some money instead of just hearing about an opportunity to make money that would probably never pan out anyway.
(Note: Please excuse any typos, I'm trying to type around a wiggly toddler)
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