LegalShield/ID Shield – my six-month experiment with being a member and Independent Associate.

First let me say that my two wonderful and insightful adult children, Erina and Kevin, both attempted to persuade me not to get involved with LegalShield back in November 2018. Here is an excerpt of their sage advice;

“Hi Dad, this is Erina. Kevin and I had concerns about your new line of work, LegalShield. Kevin and I did some research about the business, because we found it sketchy you had to pay to work. We actually (Sic) found out that it’s a popular pyramid scheme practice, called MLM (Multi-Level Marketing). We’re hoping you can opt out of the business soon and find something that won’t make you lose money along the way.

 

Here are some articles about the practice:

https://www.legalshield.com/income-disclosure

http://www.finance-guy.net/streetonomic/legalshield-review

https://www.ftc.gov/sites/default/files/documents/public_comments/trade-regulation-rule-disclosure-requirements-and-prohibitions-concerning-business-opportunities-ftc.r511993-00004%C2%A0/00004-57286.pdf”

 

I was in the middle of an MBA Fraud Examination Course when they sent me the email. I thought I had a lock on this and believed LegalShield may have some possibility for me. At the time I was recovering from a year of unemployment due to disabilities and felt that I needed to get something going other than the Notary Public Service that I had already started. I was also a Ride Share driver that was no longer able to drive commercially, at least temporarily. I thanked them for their concern and politely let them know that I still wanted to check it out.

In November I mentioned this to the Independent Associate who recruited me. Incidentally, we met at a political rally in Mesa, AZ and he was in full LegalShield garb. We spent quite a lot of time talking and met several times. I listened to what he had to say, and it sounded interesting and feasible to me. It did not sound “to-good-to-be-true”.

My troubles with LegalShield started from the very beginning. Once I made my first sale, the email address associated with my new customer was incorrectly inputted into the system. Admittedly it was the customer’s mistake. During a follow-up call with the customer, I discovered that she had not received any of the standard welcome and information material. I contacted customer service and I found it very difficult to get to a “live person”. Once I did, I was assured that the problem was fixed. However, it took months for the customer to resolve the problem with the LegalShield support group.

The amount of customer service and shipping issues that incurred and the difficulties with getting ahold of a live customer service rep to help me out are to numerous to discuss here. One example though is the shipment that I received of promotional materials that I ordered. Well, I must admit that they did get the shipping label correct. However, the contents were for another associate two states away. Trying to track her down within the LS Engage app was nearly impossible. I finally got a hold of a customer service rep that said that my shipment was also misdirected to someone else, not the same person. It took a month and a half to get the materials that I ordered; materials that I was depending on for my trade fair display. I asked the customer service rep to send me a shipping label so that I could get the contents to the intended recipient. This never happened.

So here I am six months later, and I am very disappointed in the service that I have been paying for. My case may be different than others, so I want to be clear, this is my experience. I was NOT helped with a photo speeding ticket, LLC establishment, trademark registration, and family court proceedings. The reasons for each denial of service were different but essentially, I was told that my plan did not include these issues. I had the family plan with a business rider.

I also needed help with setting up a trust/will. For this I was referred to the LegalShield phone app and was led to believe that the process would both be intuitive and easy. It was neither! The app and document questionnaire were cumbersome and complicated to navigate.

IDShield proved to be just as disappointing. The alerts that I received regarding my credit report were consistently weeks behind the alerts that I receive from Experian and Credit Karma. When I spoke with a customer support representative to express my concern, she quickly dismissed my concerns with pre-scripted talking points. “IDShield provides restoration when your identity is stolen” she said, to which I replied “I don’t want to have my identity stolen and then restored. I want to be alerted when there is any sign of activity which I didn’t initiate.” She had no answer.

In canceling my LegalShield/IDShield membership and Independent Association I ran into even further discomfort. The cancellation had to be in writing with precise instructions which I could only get from an automated phone system, even harder to get to due to the number of phone transfers that it took. At one point I asked, “how many more people to I have to go through to get to this automated cancellation that would only give me further instructions”. The third customer service told me that she could not give me the information and that she had to transfer me to this recording of information”. I’m done with trying to get support from LegalShield. My “upline” was no help at all. Nor was his upline. Complaints to the Arizona Law firm were not properly address either.

Lest I become the target of litigation by the collective might of LegalShield, who through my research I have found are quite capable of defending themselves, something they wouldn’t do from me, let me make these points as a de facto disclaimer:

 

1.      This is solely my experience and my reaction to the same my experience with LegalShield and IDShield and is not meant to reflect any other parties individual or collective experiences, opinions, or recommendations.

2.      According to all the research that I have done, LegalShield is not an illegal “Pyramid Scheme” as such. However, it is a Multi-level marketing scheme. Please do you own research and make your own conclusions.

3.      Just because for me this experience was a negative, others’ experience may be different. Again, use your own judgement.

Conclusion: There are good and bad reviews of the new “LegalShield”.  Do your own research and if you find that their services are helpful, keep paying. As for me, they have done nothing for me that I can’t do myself.

Thank you to Erina and Kevin. Kudos to them for looking out for me. I applaud their tenacity, insightfulness, and wisdom beyond their years.

 

DAL

 

Further reading:

BBB complaints on LegalShield, many of which were only made in the last six months.

https://www.bbb.org/us/ok/ada/profile/legal-services/legalshield-0995-9000434/complaints

 

 

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