According to Arizona-based MLM Forever Living (aka Forever), which sells a variety of aloe vera wellness products, “Starting a business with Forever gives you the potential to earn a significant income stream, plus have time and freedom to build your life according to your dreams and allows you the flexibility to start part-time and build a full-time income.” And if that weren’t enough to entice consumers to take a look at the company’s business opportunity, Forever Living also claims
that there is “HUGE EARNING POTENTIAL. The harder you work, the more earning potential you have. We never cap incomes and never limit your ability to earn.” Wow!
The problem is that these claims simply aren’t true. Eighty-nine percent of Forever Living distributors earn absolutely nothing
, according to the MLM’s income disclosure statement, buried at the bottom of a page on the company’s website. So if the typical Forever Living rep makes no money, why is it that TINA.org was able to collect more than 5,500 income claims being made by the company to lure consumers into its business opportunity and retain low-level distributors? TINA.org has filed a complaint
against the aloe vera MLM with the FTC encouraging the commission to use its penalty offense authority to fine the company more than $250 million for all the deceptive income claims it has made and kept on the internet for the past decade.
Thousands upon thousands of deceptive income claims
TINA.org identified a sampling of thousands of atypical earnings claims, all made exclusively by the company and its high-level employees, which means that Forever Living cannot blame its Forever Business Owners for this deception. One need look no further than the company’s website
to start finding deceptive claims. On the website, there are claims of unlimited earnings, boasts of being able to travel the world and assertions that distributors achieve time freedom. There’s also a video
on the site that says, among other things, “we even have a very generous chairman’s bonus program that gives you access to tens of millions of dollars in annual rewards” as the video shows images of distributors receiving giant bonus checks. In addition, the website links to an “Incentives” brochure
, which contains captions such as “Show Me The Money” along with images of large checks, amazing travel destinations and luxury items such as cars and yachts.
It is also clear that Forever Living has an affinity for large checks. Not only does the company roll out hundreds of them at its rallies and conventions
each year but it takes photos of almost every distributor receiving such a check and puts the images on a dedicated website – Forever Fotos
, which the company describes as “your resource for spectacular photographs from Forever Living Products corporate offices.” The site goes on to state, “Need an image for an upcoming presentation or event? This is the place where you will find approved images to use on your custom marketing materials.” The company’s mobile app also directs distributors to the site stating, “To find product photography, download our logos and see photos from all our events, go to www.foreverfotos.com.” On the Forever Fotos website there are more than 5,000 “approved” images of distributors holding large checks with amounts that are far more money than the typical Forever Living distributor will ever earn.
There are also a multitude of deceptive earnings claims on the company’s social media channels. Facebook
are chock-full of deceptive income representations made by the company. On Facebook, the wife of Forever Living president chats with successful female Forever distributors about their experiences with the company. In one interview
, a Polish immigrant to the U.S. explains how she went from being a cleaning lady to a success stay-at-home mom/Forever distributor, and how she builds her business targeting other immigrants, who want to achieve the American dream.
As mentioned above, Forever Living also has its own mobile app
known as Discover Forever that contains a plethora of images, videos and statements making atypical and unsubstantiated earnings representations – from claims that distributors can obtain financial freedom and replace their full-time income to images of big checks and world travel.