BBB Accredited Business since
Phone: (888) 472-4455 Fax: (888) 418-0374
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This company offers products and services for self-directed retirement investing, including I R A's and 4 0 1k's.
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A BBB Accredited Business since
BBB has determined that Guidant Financial Group Inc meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.
BBB accreditation does not mean that the business' products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business' product quality or competency in performing services.
Reason for Rating
BBB rating is based on 13 factors. Get the details about the factors considered.
Factors that raised the rating for Guidant Financial Group Inc include:
- Length of time business has been operating
- Complaint volume filed with BBB for business of this size
- Response to 2 complaint(s) filed against business
- Resolution of complaint(s) filed against business
Customer Complaints Summary Read complaint details
|Complaint Type||Total Closed Complaints|
|Problems with Product/Service||2|
|Total Closed Complaints||2|
Customer Reviews Summary Read customer reviews
|Customer Experience||Total Customer Reviews|
|Total Customer Reviews||0|
Licensing, Bonding or Registration
This business is in an industry that may require professional licensing, bonding or registration. BBB encourages you to check with the appropriate agency to be certain any requirements are currently being met.
These agencies may include:
Type of Entity
Business ManagementMr. Jeremy Ames, President & Co-founder
Retirement Planning Service Loans - Small Business
Alternate Business NamesAmplio Corporation
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Complaint Trends - Last 3 Years
Customer Review Trends
BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Overview
BBB Customer Reviews Rating represents the customers opinions of the business. The Customer Review Rating is based on the number of positive, neutral and negative customer reviews posted that are calculated to produce a score.
|Customer Review Experience||Value|
|Positive Review||5 points per review|
|Neutral Review||3 points per review|
|Negative Review||1 point per review|
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BBB Letter Grade Scale
Star Rating scale
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Problems with Product/Service
Read Complaint Details
Complaint: I used Guidant Finanical as my agent for my 401K investment. Paid them $4999 up front with a monthly charge of $119. In May 2013 my business was dissolved by a downgrade from ***** ****** & the store taken right from under my feet. I lost $48000. I contacted them & they gave me a name of an attorney who I contacted & he told me he would have to decline helping and sent me back to Guidant. The first week of June 2013 I went to the IRS who told me since my business is no long operating all I need to do is ask Guidant to send me the 401k. I did and told them in a certified letter the business is no longer functional and to stop taking out $119/mo as we are defunct. Since the IRS told me all I need is the 1099 from Guidant for my loss I declined to listen to Guidant as in May 2013 I spoke to the Arizona Dept Of Corporations & found out my business was in unsatisfactory condition since December 2012! On Sept 3, 2013 I received a certified letter from Guidant telling me I MUST file a form 5500 and to send documents immediately. Although I didn't think I needed to file any further documents by my visit to the IRS, I did have all the document required from Guidant to file it so I immediately sent them a package of which they received om Sept 6th, 2013. Then I received a letter from the IRS stating they have granted the extension til 10/15/2013. One week before the extension deadline I started leaving messages at Guidant to be sure they had all the paperwork they needed. Finally on Oct 15th I received a call from Guidant to confirm they had all they needed and didn't hear from them again til 10/21/2013 when I signed all the email 5500 documents ...right after signing I received an email from the dept of labor stating my filing late and my penalty is now more than $1800!
Desired Settlement: Help to be sure I don't have to pay a fine to the dept of labor.
Business Response: Initial Business Response /* (1000, 6, 2013/11/01) */ To: **** ******** BBB Services Consultant RE: Your Case # XXXXXXXX, complaint by *** ****** ******* Dear *** ******** This letter contains Guidant Financial Group's response to the above-referenced customer complaint. In the interest of client confidentiality, I will only summarize here. Please contact me if you require more details. *** ******* was a Guidant Financial Group client starting in June 2011. He engaged our services to establish a corporation for him, and under that corporation we established a 401(k) plan into which *** ******* could roll his retirement funds without penalty. The fee for this one-time service was $4999, which was returned to him in the form of stock in the new corporation. *** ******* also elected to use our Professional Recordkeeping Services for the annual 401(k) reporting and filing requirements under Department of Labor ("DOL") and IRS regulations. The cost for that ongoing service was $119 per month. *** ******* invested his 401(k) plan's funds in a ***** ****** outlet. He encountered trouble with the business at some point in spring of 2013, ultimately closing the business. He still had an operational 401(k) plan with an obligation to file a Form 5500 for both the 2012 and 2013 plan years. We started communicating with the customer in January 2013 with regard to the annual filing requirements. After several phone and email sessions, the client informed us of his intent to terminate the 401(k) plan and our Recordkeeping Services. We advised on how to accomplish this, and paid for a consultation with an outside Attorney. The process is normally a short one, and involves creating and filing the annual Form 5500 for outstanding years. This fact was explained to the client several times, but he sent us a certified letter demanding that we stop his Recordkeeping service immediately, and to stop requesting documents. The client again advised us that he did not have to submit anything, nor would he send us any of the documents we had been requesting for the 5500 filings or for the plan termination. In July, after several attempts to secure *** *******'s cooperation before the July 31st filing deadline, we filed a form 5558 requesting an extension to file his 2012 Form 5500 later, without penalty. Although he did not request this extension, the form 5558 was filed on his behalf by Guidant Financial Group to keep *** *******'s options alive, and to avoid the late filing penalty for missing the July 31 deadline. Acknowledgement of this July extension filing is the notice he received from the IRS in September. When we tried again to reach *** ******* in August he literally hung up on his account rep. At that point we canceled his 2012 and 2013 plan year end files, and all associated follow-up tasks. In late August we sent a certified letter to all clients in who were subject to the October 15th extended filing deadline. This included *** *******, despite being inactive and not paying for services since June. That letter explained that we had to have full and complete documentation in our hands before September 12 in order to have any chance at getting filed in time. Finally, on Sep 6th, the client attempted to send us the documents we'd been requesting since January. They were not close to complete, and our Account Rep advised the customer on exactly what was needed during a call on the morning of October 14th. He also advised the client that, based on the late and incomplete nature of his submissions, we could not guarantee that his Form 5500 would be done in time to file for the deadline. We received more incomplete information on the morning of October 15th, then finally got the last supplemental document at 5PM on the 15th. By that time it was simply too late to get all of the necessary reporting, testing, and compliance work done before midnight that same day. The full reporting and compliance work was finished on 21 October. We sent him the "ready to file" email, and we also sent him information about the Delinquent Filers Voluntary Correction Program (DFVCP). We do everything within our power to keep our clients on track with their filing obligations, and Guidant Financial Group went to great lengths to help *** ******* file on time, both in July and again before the extension deadline on October 15th. The only thing that made it impossible to succeed was the client's refusal to cooperate with us for over 9 months. As a result, the customer is responsible for paying the late filing fee(s) associated with his 2012 401(k) plan year. We again urge *** ******* to avail himself of the opportunity afforded under the DFVCP option. While we have already provided all of the necessary information to *** *******, we will be happy to guide him through that process if he would like our assistance. Please contact me by phone or email if you have any questions about this response. Kind Regards, *** ****** Operations Manager Guidant Financial Group XXXX XXX** *** ** *** *** Bellevue, WA 98004 ************ ***** www.guidantfinancial.com
|4/29/2013||Problems with Product/Service|