World Financial Group Scam – Is WFG a Scam?

You came here wondering if World Financial Group is a scam. This review suggests it’s likely yes WFG is a scam and yes WFG is a MLM.

World Financial Group (WFG) Scam

World Financial Group (WFG) is a multi-level marketing company which sells investment, insurance, and other financial products through a network of distributors. WFG is active in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. WFG is owned by Transamerica, a subsidiary of Aegon. While Aegon and Transamerica are legit insurance comapnies, the selling practices of World Financial Group has been called a scam by many people. This page will help detail some of the criticisms of World Financial Group as a scam. You can then decide for yourself whether WFG is a scam.

How WFG Recruits

According to Yelp reviews, WFG targets students fresh out of high school or in college. This is because they don’t have a lot of real world experience yet, and are more easily impressed by people in suits driving fancy cars.

World Financial Group Scam / MLM

People claim that World Financial Group is a scam because of the way it sells insurance. The claims of WFG being a scam is mostly related to the “business opportunity” offered to salespeople, and the over-hyping of financial products.
Recruits are known as “associates” and pay $100 as a joining/”administrative” fee. Former associates have reported stories of being pressured to sell overpriced products to friends and family, burning those bridges. They have also reported the WFG recruits associates just to tap into that personal network, and not because the associate is fit for the business.

WFG Scam for Distributors/Associates

The pyramid/MLM features of World Financial Group means very few people make money. Typically the ones at the top of a MLM pyramid makes all the money while the bottom (new recruits) make barely anything.

WFG Scam for Customers

We talked mostly about why some people think World Financial Group is a scam for distributors/associates. We now talk about why some people feel WFG is a scam for clients as well.
Notice that the commission rates go up to 65%. That means when a client buys a financial product, 65% of that amount is going towards the sales agent and 35% to the insurance company. The insurance company, in this case, AEGON, makes money as well. Which means that the majority of what a customer pays isn’t for the product but for marketing and sales. Whereas an index fund may charge less than 1% as a fee. This is why people believe that customers of World Financial Group are also getting scammed since the markup is insane on these “financial products”.

WFG Pyramid Scheme

Dedicated vs Non-Dedicated Members

According to WFG:
There are two (2) types of members in WFG: Dedicated and Non-Dedicated. Dedicated members are those persons who have made a decisionto market for sale only those Products and Services marketed by WFG. Non-Dedicated members are those persons who have made a decision to market the Products and Services and other products and services not marketed by WFG. Although the membership terms of Dedicated and Non-Dedicated members will be identical in some respects, Dedicated members will be accorded certain benefits not available to Non-Dedicated members.”

Associate Levels

There are multiple associate levels dictating how much commission you get per “qualifying” sale. Note that each “progression” requires you to have recruited others. This is where the pyramid structure of WFG comes into play, and why many people call it a pyramid scheme or scam.

Training Associate

Commission: 25%
Progression Requirement: within any sequential 30 days make 3 sales and recruit 3 partners (known as 3:3:30)

Associate

Commission: 35%
Progression Requirement: 3 direct associates through the personal recruits, 5 life licensed associates in your team and 40,000 net points in 3 rolling months

Marketing Director

Commission: 50%
Progression Requirement: 10 associates in your team, 6 of whom must be life licensed, 3 branches of personal recruits (legs), one of which must be MD level, 75,000 net points within 3 months rolling time. Also, there must be $35,000 cash flow within 12 rolling months or $20,000 – within 6 rolling months.

Senior Marketing Director

Commission: 65%
Progression Requirement: 3 direct recruits – all SMDs and either 500,000 net points in 6 rolling months or 750,000 net points in 12 rolling months.

World Financial Group Legal Issues

World Financial Group has run into legal issues in the past, which lends credibility to WFG being a scam. World Group Securities (WGS) is the broker-dealer affiliate of World Financial Group (WFG), and are both owned by AEGON.

  • World Group Securities (WGS) had incurred ten regulatory penalties since 2004
  • WGS and one of its brokers were fined $150,000 in 2006 by Missouri’s commissioner of securities for selling unsuitable products to elderly people
  • WGS was fined $50,000 in 2004 for failing to supervise its representatives in the State of Utah, who were misrepresenting their credentials and services rendered during free lunch seminars targeting seniors
  • WGS was fined over $850,000 in 2010 as the result of the unauthorized sale of private securities by some of its agents in the State of Arizona
  • in 2010 the SEC ordered WGS to pay, among other things, a civil monetary penalty in the amount of $200,000 for the fraudulent selling of unsuitable securities in the State of California, which were funded using home equity, derived from the refinance of the customers’ homes into subprime mortgages
  • World Financial Group Reviews

    People on the internet have reviewed WFG and many agree that it’s a MLM scam.

    Reddit User toolboc

    Yes, I know it sounds crazy, but I discovered the branch manager did not own the house he claimed he paid for at a recruiting event / house party via public property and mortgage records. This may be a tactic used to draw members. If one makes themselves seem more well off than they really are by renting expensive cars and homes and they can potentially pass them off as having been earned through “the business”. I have received PM’s in response to this very post describing situations where the upline leases an expensive car to a new recruit. The recruit is now paying for the upline’s vehicle while using the car as a symbol of proof that the business works.

    World Financial Group Scam

    Hope you learned a lot from reading about the WFG scam. Read the reviews on World Financial Group so you don’t get scammed!

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    21 Comments

    1. I am so upset when my daughter has been recruited to joined by WFG. She is 20 years old know nothing about finances. When she told me she that she need to call 10 people to sign up or join which my daughter paid $130. I knew this is a SCAM!
      The most part that I am angry about is when my daughter pressured to call people to join or sign up in front of them. This people that to called to join are her friends and cousins. This an ultimate a Pyramid Scheme. Targeting young people/ students who is vulnerable is totally unforgiving. I want this to STOP! I don’t want anymore students or young adults to be targeted to this kind of scheme. Please leave my daughter alone. Unbelievable!

    2. I wish I had read this article and searched out the company before I paid money! I thought it reminded me of Amway! We are much older and somehow we became recruits by believing they offer better retirement than putting your money into a 401K. Now I wonder what is true?

    3. While some of this information is correct about it’s not entirely accurate and does put WFG in a poor light it’s not 100% deserving off. Like the commissions, yes they go up to 66% but relative to what other insurance salespeople make that’s low. Most others operating in a traditional sales model have commission rates of 100% or more. The other things to mention is that it’s business model is of a brokerage and identical to Remax. I don’t want to tell you it’s not a scam, that’s a decision to make on your own.

      • 100% or more ? 🤣🤣🤣🤣 this is the biggest load of horse poop I have ever heard. Just say you got suckered to a pyramid scheme and feel like a complete fool instead of suckering the next fool 😂😂🤣🤣🤣🤣

        • How in the heck is it a pyramid scheme? Have you ever been a part of WFG ? Or are you listening to other people complain. We run the company as a franchise. I would LOVE for you to really research this company before saying anything negative.

    4. WFG is not a scam at all. They don’t target young people either. and it’s not a pyramid scheme a pyramid scheme literally makes a pyramid where as wfg doesn’t. People get misconceptions of it because of the people who were lazy and couldn’t handle the pressure of doing this thing called work. Think about it if you work for state farm when you get promoted for hitting certain milestones you’re contract level goes up same difference. Ignorant uneducated individuals will think it’s a scheme when in actuality the government wants people to be poor wants to keep working them like dogs and doesn’t actually want to help certain people of a certain caliber. They don’t pressure them to call anybody at the end of the day it’s that persons decision all I’m reading is excuses and way to prevent success.

      • If you believe in WFG’s business model, Scientology might be right up your alley too. #Brainwashing

      • How are they not a pyramid scheme when I was in orientation before my eyes were open they kept arguing that they were not part of a period scheme if they aren’t then why are they even arguing it in the first place.

    5. I signed up on a Saturday paid the $100 application fee and have conversation about the business. After that conversation I did not like it what I was hearing. On the following Monday( two days later) I called to cancelled my membership. I was told that that my member ship will be cancelled but the $100 is not refundable. That was 3 years ago. Since that time I was getting letter looking for annual fee but no contact information. Finally this month I got letter of cancellation of my appointment for non -payments!!! ( no return address)

      • Do you feel they offered good advice on your finances? I was just at one of their branches, because my friend said they have a seminar, but it was a one on one sit down and at the end he asked me to schedule a day to come back then asked me to register ($100). I learned a few things in that session, but left without registering because I don’t sign up for things on the spot.

    6. Hi I recently was recruited by them and yes I am a college student. Although I was recruited my best friends did some digging today and found that I have been sucked into a pyramid scheme. Anyways I had training today at there Anaheim office and it was interesting by all means I was told that I have to pay $300 to get licensed, and I kept asking questions to other people there my age like for example how to make money instead they were not up front with me and would often try to change the subject. I knew that something is wrong but it seams like a legit business because there are middle age people that work there. For me personally I had a hard time telling if I this was a pyramid scheme and I recently also had a interview at vector marketing which is a pyramid scheme based company and also a joke of a company.

    7. I was recently recruited by them also, beware if a “well dressed” person walks up to you at a gas station, restaurant or any public space and asks if your interested in making more money, just ignore them. They target these popular places cause they don’t want to get in trouble for soliciting. They claim that pyramids are illegal (which they are) but absolutely lie to get you into the business saying “this isn’t like primamerca”. “We aren’t a MLM”. Which they are. Trying to explain that to the MD’s in the office is like talking to a monkey. They are so brainwashed that they just change the subject, who else am I supposed to ask at that point? There’s so many offices around Southern California that it’s a cult. I noticed the SMD’s drive a new vehicle everyday. Nobody else notices it but I believe they are just renting luxury vehicles to impress everyone in the office. There needs to be a federal investigation with these offices cause they bring in inexperienced college kids with no background and they use them as puppets. Truthfully I wouldn’t trust a 20 year old with no experience help me with my finances and insurance. They also claim that they don’t do solicitation but require all new people to call friends and family to join the business. Lies all around.

      • I totally agree with you, I was recruited and I had a bunch of questions when the recruiter told me he has a 250k passive income per year and people he’s trained are up to 500k passive income a year. Question after question and all I was told was “come to our corporate overview tomorrow, you will learn more and I will show you around”. As for the 20 years old with no experience, I actually spoke to a few of them at the corporate overview and learned that they either dropped out of school or didn’t go to school at all, and they’re supposed to be “financial advisors”? Not trying to discredit anyone, but if anyone actually believes that people working for WFG are competent enough to advise others on how to spend their money, there really isn’t much else to say. I recently graduated from college as well with an accounting degree, and when I spoke to a few people from WFG many would tell me they were nurses; what in the world does being a nurse have to do with finance? Maybe having more clientele to recruit? I was scheduled to have a sit down appointment but a couple days after the corporate overview but I texted the next day saying that this wasn’t for me (to be nice, as the recruiter was one of my friends) and I was just going to pursue my career in accounting. Nonetheless, if you sit through a corporate overview and are have no negative opinions of their structure and company, you’re one of their prime targets.

    8. Total Scam, They found my ad in the classifieds and told me they needed a software developer, then threw a little party and beat around the bush for hours before trying to recruit me as a “member” not an “employee” with their standard fee amongst other bs, I also notice the system they have in place leaves their “member / employees… whatever” totally vulnerable from a legal standpoint, because they are broken up into departments that seem like made up companies and all individuals are seen as independent affiliates or third parties, so that the organization takes no responsibility. They simultaneously tried to sell me their “financial services and advice” which seems to be financial common sense to me. The more I stuck around, the more they targeted me. They asked me questions about my life and accordingly made up services I may be interested in, services that they don’t even offer, in order to get money from me. The guy interviewing me would say anything to sign me up, but didn’t want to seem weak, so he starting belittling me and common people as if he were heir to the throne, talking for over an hour about how great he is. He showed me his paystub on his iPhone, which he just made up and wrote on the Notes app. I wasted as much of their time as possible before telling them it’s not for me. I come across these constantly because I have public whois information and ads in classifieds. Our financial times are terrible and getting worse, likewise there are sharks everywhere. Be sure to teach your kids about finances, pyramid schemes, scams, con-artists… etc. They’re alive and well.

    9. I’ll try to keep this brief. My neighbors got involved with this group about six years ago. One day the wife asked to bring their representative to my house to demonstrate the sales presentation for them to observe. I don’t want to cast doubt on their true motivation but I said OK (just to be neighborly.) Since I had been involved with Amway in the late 70’s for a year or two, I was tuned into the verbage and code words. Sure enough, they were there. After a very lengthy presentation with graphs, pie charts and a ton of informational print, the woman finally got to the bottom line. Selling investment/insurance policies. Since I have a company that handles my (relatively meager) investments, I had no reason to pursue this “opportunity.” She saw I was a deadend but still suggested I might have 10 people to recommend. Well…NO. I’d never do that. I don’t know how much money my neighbors have invested in this venture, but I don’t see any change in their lifestyle. The wife completed the “training” and got some kind of license. The husband attempted the “test” twice and failed both times. At one point she told me she hoped to do this full time and quit her “real” job. That was about five years ago and she is still at her “real” job. I was asked to attended a presentation (she needed to bring people) and it was a huge crowd of extremely enthusiastic and hyperactive people held at a convention center. Because of my experience with Amway, this was all too familiar. They may have given it up as I’ve not heard anything else about it. It takes a special personality to succeed at this: aggressive, tenacious with lots of contacts. When a person exhausts family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, it’s over.

      • What I find interesting is that I haven’t met one WFG client who actually has investments…they’re well-known for selling way over-funded indexed universal life insurance. They even recommend moving 401(k) and all other retirement assets into the life insurance policy which is ridiculous unless you know what the commission that’s paid on those transfer is…it’s clearly about the person selling it and not the person being asked to buy. Run the other way!

    10. My dad works for WFG, and as a finance major I do see a lot of the company’s flaws, but he has found a really great support system in his team. Every team and office is different, so I know this isn’t the case for everyone. He still works a full-time job that isn’t his true passion. WFG gives him motivation to get through the week. Also, he’s made a steady income that reflects the part-time hours he has invested. He likes to focus on selling and educating more than recruiting, but I definitely see his team lead pushing him to recruit more. I am aware of the fees he has paid and has continued to pay. I don’t want to lie nor be naiive. However, his time at WFG has been a great experience, and he’s learned so much. If he’s happy, I’m happy.

    11. It appears most people’s posted comments parrot each other , which is human nature rather than truth. The truth is: pyriamid “shemes” are illegal. This company could not operate if it were doing something illegal. Secondly since when are network marketing companies a scam? There are hundreds of network marketing companies and WFG is the distributor of Transamerica products. Thirdly, many people’s retirement and financial futures have been secured because of a WFG associate who educated and helped them. Many financial advisors charge hundreds of dollars just to step into their office to talk them about your investments. The comments posted are one sided by people who only explored one side and did not thoroughly research the company. All I read was ” crucify him!”. If you want to be intellectually honest and have an element of humility, you might want to the book Unaurhorized by SteveSiebold. The truth about World Financial Group. Then post your comment.

    12. Totally an scam, I meet I girl who told me she can gave me a opportunity to work with his boyfriend in this company, she gave him me cel, after a 1 day I started to received phones call from this guys pushing me to meet him, since I’m working full time I told him to wait for the next week, since then everyday he called me with differents excuses to “wrap me” in this scam, I left him talk to see up to what point he was going, 3 day someone else called me early en the morning, that was enough he share me phone number with other person and this one started to send me messages, the same day the guy who was calling me at the beginning called meaning 2 phone calls from different people and 1 message in the same day, I answer him and told him WE ARE NEVER GOING TO MEET THIS IS A SCAM, I’M TIRED OF YOUR PUSH SYSTEM, DONT CALL ME ANYMORE YOU OR YOUR CO-WORKERS.

      Since then they never call me back and life is back to normal, sick people desperate for money, so obvious, ALL BE AWERE !!! This happened in miami

      When you come from sud america, and you ear a lot of this, you understand that this guys are really amateurs…

    13. I signed up with WFG, and we did a refi. My parents almost lost their home because of it, the low variable loan shot up to 4 or 5 times the amount it was, and kept climbing. Then all the home insurances WFG did not pay but rather sent checks to my parents, and it was up to my parents to try and pay the amounts with those checks but WFG should have taken care of this themselves instead of lapsing coverage in every insurance.

    14. I was invited to their Torrance, CA office under deceptive means: I was told they needed to interview me for an administrative support position. As soon as I walked in the door and was greeted by an overly enthusiastic bunch of well dressed 20-somethings — an alarm went off and I thought, “Awww… crap. I’ve been hooked.” So, just to be ornery, I went around the room and handed out my personal business card and pens, and when I approached one young man, he looked a little scared to accept them. He looked nervously at the “Manager” who said, “It’s okay, go ahead and accept it from her.” THAT interaction was incredibly creepy and WEIRD. I walked out halfway through the presentation. I am no financial wiz, but the information was super vague and totally bogus — a lot of charts with big figures and each one with a disclaimer below about what was being presented. When I walked out, a man from the group ran after me yelling, “Wait! Did you fill out a blue card or make an appointment?” I shouted back at him, “No thanks!” And I bolted out the door. It is indeed a pyramid scheme and a rather cult-like one, at that.

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