Chris Zaal is the owner of Southwest Financial Group out of McKinney, TX. Under this business name, he also has a company called American Teachers Retirement where he targets teachers in the area getting ready to retire. When my mom was getting ready to retire from DISD, his name/number was given as a possible person to help with retirement advice. (not sure how they have his name other than he probably solicited business cards to the people in charge). Chris Advised my mom into withdrawing her entire IRA and put about 50k into Universal Leases and the other amount, approx 100k into something called Term Life through DelGreene Financial. In 2009, my mother showed me some letters that she had received from the US Attorney General about an alleged lawsuit/ponzi scheme involving a guy buy the name of Michael E. Kelly. My mom was being notified because she was a victim, but it never made sense to her b/c she didn’t realize Chris had invested her money in Universal Leases. Here is the site with more information: lesliestipek.com/michaelekelly.asp Also, the SEC information: sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2008/lr20799.htm Once I figured out that my mom had lost the entire 50k I started looking through her paperwork and noticed that several things weren’t adding up and was missing some important documents. I contacted Chris Zaal to get copies of my mom’s information and also to find out why he had not notified my mom. He said I needed a power of attorney in order to discuss my mom’s finances with me. I sent him a fax and a scanned copy through email and didn’t hear anything from him. (This happened around Sept 2009). When I called to follow up, I was told I needed to mail a copy of the power of attorney to him. I mailed him a copy of the document along with a letter stating exactly what I was looking for and never heard back. I found the Delgreene Financial company through websearch and when I called to speak to them, I was referred back to Chris Zaal.. as he was my broker. In 2009, called me this week letting me know she received a letter from Chris Zaal notifying her that Delgreene financial is named in a lawsuit on 11/10/09 by the Attorney General for Colorado. Southwest Financial Group/Chris Zaal is named in this lawsuit as well, and it seems that all assets have been frozen. At one point, I did speak to Chris Zaal and he said he didn’t receive my letter, but had received my power of attorney. He said he would be sending me the documents I requested.. but that is yet to be seen. I asked him how it was possible that he invested all of my mom’s retirement into 2 separate ponzi schemes.. and his response was that he was just as shocked as I am. I found the story on www.huffingtonpost.com under the Jerrald Green Ponzi scheme. In the Colorado Lawsuit, Chris is mentioned as being one of the commissioned brokers that brought clients to DelGreene. I wonder how many other teachers this has happened to? It’s probably worth mentioning that when I first started looking into this, I spoke to a Financial Advisor to get some direction. He said that another woman had the same thing happen to her that was also a retired teacher, but she never did anything about it because she felt embarassed for falling for this. Chris doesn’t have a financial license to even be giving financial advice. I write this now as my mom passed away 2 weeks ago. She never recovered from the loss of her entire life savings. I hope that someone reads this and it stops them from using Chris Zaal or Southwest Financial group or at a minimum, be diligent when planning your financial future. ASK QUESTIONS and do your research! .
This complaint and/or review was posted on HolySmoke.org on 04:35 am, January 18, 2019 (CST) and is a permanent record located at: https://www.holysmoke.org/scam/chris-zaal-review/.
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