The Better Business Bureau’s National Advertising Division has just issued a big warning about JG Wentworth a company that we have covered here extensively. The warning is about it’s popular slogan offering “cash now”. In exchange for a transfer of a recipients structure settlement and annuity payment rights a process that takes at least 5 weeks and is not an instant cash now offer. The implied messaging that comes across on their television commercials of which they spend around $50,000,000 a year on implies that an immediate cash transfer to their bank account and this is deceptive and should be modified to disclose material information about the timing of the process according to the complaint that the NAD has put out.
What the JG Wentworth Commercials Say That is Misleading?
The issue that the Better Business Bureau has with the television commercials that JG Wentworth and Peachtree are running nationally is that they have a monologue that says the following:
- “I have a structured settlement and I need cash now. Call J.G. Wentworth.”
- “I have an annuity but I need cash now. Call J.G. Wentworth.”
- “Do you get regular payments from an insurance company, for example, from a personal injury settlement or a car accident? …. In exchange for some or all of your future payments, we give you a lump sum of cash now.”
The Radnor, Pennsylvania company that we have covered for their practices is offering a $100 cash now offer to compete with our $500 no questions asked consultation. As they’ve been puchasing payment rights for the last 25 years they should know what is ethical and misleading when advertising. As a result of a wrongful death or serious personal injury case you or someone related to you may have been awarded a settlement that was structured to take care of them for a specific period of time with periodic payments made to them. A lump sum is often the choice the plaintiff goes with after the fact and needs to hire a factoring company to help facilitate the transaction. When a consumer decides that they want to do a deal with JG Wentworth for cash now they have to sign a stack of paperwork, have the paperwork notarized, meet with an IPA or Guardian Ad Litem (Depending on the case and scenario), discuss the case with an attorney, attend court, have the judge approve the transaction, wait for the insurance company to approve, and then be funded. All of this is a long drawn out process that has only been slowed down because of COVID-19 and the courts being backed up.
JG Wentworth Taking Too Long
The process takes months to sell or transfer your payment rights. It’s annoying to have to wait that long and it’s even worse to be deceived into thinking that the process is nearly instant and you can get cash now today for selling. Annuity payments, lottery winnings, and casino jackpots all have a very similar process to selling and it’s not an instant jackpot when you call the CASH NOW toll free number even though the ads on television may have you thinking that and thats where the gripe comes from with the BBB.
Cash is not received immediately and consumers aren’t clearly informed that they can get all of their contractually agreed upon funds until after the judge has approved the deal and the bank has funded JG Wentworth with money to supply their customers minus their large selling fees. This is what the complaint from the BBB is concerning. They are asking for this to be properly disclosed to warn and alert consumers so that they are informed about how the transaction works.
The NAD is advising that JG Wentworth use visual references to explain their services and only wants to limit their advertising that can be seen as deceptive. This may be a press move or as a result of a lot of complaints from customers who’ve had a bad experience with JG Wentworth. In a recent advertising statement J.G. Wentworth has agreed to “comply with NAD’s recommendations. As 25 years of experience without a single complaint on payment timing attests, customers understand what J.G. Wentworth’s iconic tag line means when it refers to ‘cash now.’ Nevertheless, J.G. Wentworth is pleased to participate in the self-regulatory process and will take NAD’s recommendations into account in its future advertising.”