Have You Ever Seen a MS Company Go Broke, Not Pay, and Disappear?

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Yes. Franchise Compliance went out of business owing me $218.33. Tried several avenues of getting paid but no luck since the owner disappeared.
@JASFLALMT wrote:

Yes. Franchise Compliance went out of business owing me $218.33. Tried several avenues of getting paid but no luck since the owner disappeared.

That stinks. sad smiley
@JASFLALMT wrote:

Yes. Franchise Compliance went out of business owing me $218.33. Tried several avenues of getting paid but no luck since the owner disappeared.

WOW! That really sucks. And there is just nothing you can do. smh
Many years ago a company called G3 or G4 went out of business and left many shoppers unpaid. The owners apparently opened up under a new business, but I'm not sure if it survived or what it was called. Keep an eye out for shoppers reporting payment issues and steer clear of those companies unless things are straightened out. There are usually warning signs before a company folds completely. It happens rarely, but it happens.

*****************************************************************************
A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.

Zen Shin Talks
@MsJudi wrote:

Many years ago a company called G3 or G4 went out of business and left many shoppers unpaid. The owners apparently opened up under a new business, but I'm not sure if it survived or what it was called. Keep an eye out for shoppers reporting payment issues and steer clear of those companies unless things are straightened out. There are usually warning signs before a company folds completely. It happens rarely, but it happens.

Yeah, my natural instincts were to not do NSS shops after I heard of payment issues.

But when I voiced my reservations in an earlier thread, other posters made fun of me. They said it was a safe company and had been around for many, many years.

That on top of NSS offering very high bonuses shortly after the bounced check issues made me take some shops. I couldn't resist the big bonuses and it felt reassuring that people said it was a very solid company.. Now, I'm wondering if I made a mistake, as I haven't been paid for my March shops yet and people have wondered if they lost a big client. I did several hundred dollars worth of shops for them that have yet to be paid, so it got me a bit worried.

In the future, I'm going to wait it out for a while after payment problems with a company or, at the very least, not do hundreds of dollars worth of shops soon afterward. Maybe one or two shops to test things out. We'll see what happens with NSS. I'm hoping for the best.

My question wasn't targeted toward any particular company, but just ms companies in general.

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 05/29/2017 01:33PM by shoptastic.
I still have faith in NSS, even after my problem with FC. I may have responded about that in other threads but I did not make fun of anyone. I understand reservations, however, and I hope I am not wrong about them. I do have a great relationship with several of their schedulers and would be very disappointed if things go awry.
Yes NSS has been great --- but there are clear warning signs like not posting any new shops for the new pizza cycle and being told, "the checks have been mailed" but unwilling to say when they were mailed..............in the past they would at least tell me when the checks had been mailed.
A bunch of companies have gone out of business over the years. Freeman and Associates, Franchise Compliance, JC and Associates, Nationwide Services Group, Grassroots/Mystery Guest, and Direct Scheduling Services/Melissa Benson all went out of business over the years, owing money to shoppers. There might be more I don't remember. Then there are others, like Legacy Marketing Group and Shop Angels that sort of drifted away but it appeared that their shoppers were paid before they drifted. Those who have been around longer than me could probably make a much longer list of MS companies no longer here, many of whom closed their doors owing their shoppers money.;
Last I heard there were shoppers never paid by Instant Replays. Is Inside Evalutors still an ongoing issue? The only company going belly up and owing me money was Marketing Systems. The reimbursement was less than $30, but the fees were for video shops so they were upwards of $200.

I have to see a pattern of non-payment being reported by well-established shoppers before completely avoiding a company.. To protect myself I will not take shops involving travel or reimbursements for anything that cannot be returned until comfortable cash flow is back to normal.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/29/2017 06:49PM by LisaSTL.
Grassroots went out of business several years ago. Luckily, I had a shop scheduled for the following month and was not out any money, but several other I knew went unpaid.
I recall Freeman being especially terrible to deal with. I had only completed one crappy motel shop for them. I called them to remind about payment, and was then paid promptly. I consider myself lucky. Within 60 days they went belly-up and owed a lot of shoppers money.

Grassroots was odd. I worked with them for years, and then one day before I was to do a restaurant shop, I received an e-mail stating that my shop was cancelled. No reason why. I then saw others posting about their Grassroots shops being cancelled and within a couple days I learned that they went under. Again I was lucky that I was paid for my previous shops.
I know someone who was owed more than $10k from Freeman when they went out of business. Never paid... Orillio and Associates owed me over $4k when they filed bankruptcy in 2008. I was named as a creditor in the suit but as an IC I was last in order of importance. I was never paid. I was lucky as the last shop I did was a casino shop and I won over $6k (this was a shop where you didn't have to return the winnings). So my damage was in the end nothing. But others have fared way worse in both those companies situations.
I lost about $500 when Orilio went Belly up. I felt fortunate that it was when it was,a few weeks later and I would have lost significantly more.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/30/2017 05:36AM by EileenS.
Well it certainly looks like some serious issues at NSS. They are not even answering their phone today and I have tried several times.
There have been payment issues with many other companies in the past and it seems most of them were never resolved but if someone who has been part of this with other companies (even unsuccessful in claiming their money) can let us know how to proceed with this company I and the other NSS shoppers owed money would be grateful.
Contacting NSS for me has been unsuccessful. As of last week they were answering their phone at least but it seems they are not today. Are they still in business? How do we find out? Do we contact the Better Business Bureau? Do we try to sue them as a group? Things might turn around tomorrow for them but right now from a shopper's point of view it looks pretty grim.
Thanks for your advice on how to go about at least pursuing them for money owed.
My pay history shows being paid on the 28th of the month, like clockwork. However, today is the 30th and I have not received my pay. Then again, it was a holiday and not sure how much is affected by that. tongue sticking out smiley
Sunny, many of us have not yet received a check for last month (end of April payment for March shops). You must be one of the lucky ones who did get paid.
One of their clients is being shopped this month by a different, small MS. I do not know if they have a relationship but I was referred by NSS to this MS a few months ago for another assignment. The cosmetics company has been shopped since last month by a non US MS company.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/31/2017 02:13PM by KateH.
@sandyf wrote:

Sunny, many of us have not yet received a check for last month (end of April payment for March shops). You must be one of the lucky ones who did get paid.

I'm owed $30 for one pizza shop.
I did it in March.
Based on history, the check should go out on Friday. If it went out now, it would be early.
Hmm, you have a different history than I do. My check for my March shops has been reading released or whatever they call it for over a month and I was told over a week ago they were mailing them and had overcome some issues with pay. They recognized that the checks for March shops was very late in that phone conversation. In the meantime they are not even answering their phone this week. I get a recording telling me their open hours and say there is no one to answer the phone. That has been going on for two days. I have been working for them for years and have always gotten my check the end of the following month of the job (or a few days into the next month which would have been early May in the case of March shops). No emails are being answered.
Freeman Group owed me a few hundred dollars, it was the only shop I did for them.
Grassroots went under but I got paid.
@sandyf wrote:

Hmm, you have a different history than I do. My check for my March shops has been reading released or whatever they call it for over a month and I was told over a week ago they were mailing them and had overcome some issues with pay. They recognized that the checks for March shops was very late in that phone conversation. In the meantime they are not even answering their phone this week. I get a recording telling me their open hours and say there is no one to answer the phone. That has been going on for two days. I have been working for them for years and have always gotten my check the end of the following month of the job (or a few days into the next month which would have been early May in the case of March shops). No emails are being answered.
You are right. I went over this in my head last night. March checks should have gone out the first week of May, not the first week of June. Seems as though I am not getting my $20 bonus on the carryout or the $10 for the pizza.
@MickeyB wrote:

I know someone who was owed more than $10k from Freeman when they went out of business.

I know that person too. So sad.

G3 stiffed me for around $1200. I wrote it off on my taxes that year. Some of those people started another company in Ohio. I don't work for them. They are disgusting (it's not Intelli-shop BTW).

Did anyone mention Infotel? I do recall a phone conversation with Gary(?) the owner that involved me dropping more than one f bomb. They were one of the two original companies that shopped Starbucks in the late 90's, early 2000's.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/01/2017 05:56PM by SoCalMama.
@SoCalMama wrote:

@MickeyB wrote:

I know someone who was owed more than $10k from Freeman when they went out of business.

I know that person too. So sad.

G3 stiffed me for around $1200. I wrote it off on my taxes that year. Some of those people started another company in Ohio. I don't work for them. They are disgusting (it's not Intelli-shop BTW).

Did anyone mention Infotel? I do recall a phone conversation with Gary(?) the owner that involved me dropping more than one f bomb. They were one of the two original companies that shopped Starbucks in the late 90's, early 2000's.

$10K is so huge of a sum for a mystery shop(s) that I cannot fathom putting myself into that position.

Even $1K sounds like a lot. Was there a good track record with this company that allowed people to be comfortable with making large purchases and/or doing lots of hard shops with high pay?

How many shops does it take to rack up a $10K+ tab?

Were there warning signs for you guys with these other companies that you mentioned going out of biz?
@SoCalMama wrote:

@MickeyB wrote:

I know someone who was owed more than $10k from Freeman when they went out of business.

I know that person too. So sad.

G3 stiffed me for around $1200. I wrote it off on my taxes that year. Some of those people started another company in Ohio. I don't work for them. They are disgusting (it's not Intelli-shop BTW).

Did anyone mention Infotel? I do recall a phone conversation with Gary(?) the owner that involved me dropping more than one f bomb. They were one of the two original companies that shopped Starbucks in the late 90's, early 2000's.

Which company did they start?
@shoptastic wrote:

@SoCalMama wrote:

@MickeyB wrote:

I know someone who was owed more than $10k from Freeman when they went out of business.

I know that person too. So sad.

G3 stiffed me for around $1200. I wrote it off on my taxes that year. Some of those people started another company in Ohio. I don't work for them. They are disgusting (it's not Intelli-shop BTW).

Did anyone mention Infotel? I do recall a phone conversation with Gary(?) the owner that involved me dropping more than one f bomb. They were one of the two original companies that shopped Starbucks in the late 90's, early 2000's.

$10K is so huge of a sum for a mystery shop(s) that I cannot fathom putting myself into that position.

Even $1K sounds like a lot. Was there a good track record with this company that allowed people to be comfortable with making large purchases and/or doing lots of hard shops with high pay?

How many shops does it take to rack up a $10K+ tab?

Were there warning signs for you guys with these other companies that you mentioned going out of biz?
I'm not helping you write your book for free, sorry.
But maybe she will offer us a discount on the book! I'm still wondering if it is a book or a blog.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
I fail to understand why people think she is writing a blog or a book. Yeah she asks a ton of questions but I haven't really seen many that would make for book material.

I see a 22 year old who's either a trust fund kid or who's husband makes reallllllly good money and she doesn't have to have a job. Or perhaps he's military and stationed remote. She's bored out of her skull and has no experience whatsoever in the world of having to work for a living (hence my odds on favorite is trust fund kid) and has for some reason taken an interest in mystery shopping.

There are reasons that a body stays in motion
At the moment only demons come to mind
Some people have come here over the last five or six years and asked a lot of questions. It wasn't long after we discovered books and/or blogs out there. One even quoted posts from here verbatim while giving the impression they were her thoughts and opinions. The OP's questions alone may not be enough, but combine it with all the information already available and there is enough to write several books. Regardless, there is no need for her to get her knickers in a knot over the odd comment here and there.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
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