Empower Retirement

Sucks at investing

Autoenrolled into this shit-stain of a Empower Retirement through my internship, despite opting out, they put me back in when it came time to process the first payment.

These assholes took about $130 off my paycheck and refused to give it back until 2 months after it “vested” (that or some other bullshit–regardless it was waaay to long for what amounted to a refund).

Once it came to that time I was given a few other reasons why they had to delay my payment.

I can’t remember what for, as it was three months ago and those reasons basically amounted to them being a bureaucratic hellscape.

But finally I got them to start the refund–only after realizing, to my horror, that they “invested it”.

In the month that they had played it in the stock market, my $130 shrank to about $100. A loss.

I would like to point out that this is the longest bull economy in our nation’s history, how in the economical fuck did they pull that off?

Naturally, they took a fee for the refund, and then I incurred a $19 tax for early withdrawal of my 401k.

The auto-enroll payment that should have never went through occurred in August, 2018.

It is now February 2019 and I am looking at a $77 check from Empower.

While I figure getting that back is better than forgetting about the account forever, I’m still pissed that we live in a world where companies like this exist.

tl;dr: Anti-consumer. Bureaucratic. Sucks at investing. They all probably eat babies

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44 reviews on Empower Retirement

  1. Do Not do business with this company!!!!!

    I had money in a 401k that I forgot about the plan is no longer around but I never got paid my money. For 3 weeks and 4 people later of trying to recover my money they say it was paid out in 2002 after another one of their reps said this plan was paid out in 2011, but I never received a check. I told them for all I know one of their employees could have cashed that check as they say they have no way of seeing who cashed said check. He said that is possible. So I am out of my money and they don’t seem to care. Do Not do business with this company!!!!!

  2. TERRIBLE!!! I cannot stress this enough!

    TERRIBLE!!! I cannot stress this enough! They sent my 401K off to a 3rd party WITHOUT my consent, even after I filed the proper paperwork to send it to another company.

    I spoke with a rep who ASSURED me that my account would be placed on hold while the paperwork was ran. Months later I find out my money is gone. POOF! So now, I need to pay this other company all these fees to finally move my money to the correct company. Obviously, I call for a reimbursement since its Empower’s mistake. Easy right?…..WRONG!!
    I spoke with Tom (Supervisor) to review the recording of that call, and he blatantly LIED saying that I was never told that.

    I do have an option to get a written transcript, which I need to pay for (not happening), through a 3rd party company. However, at this point, I don’t trust anything connected with Empower. Don’t use this company. Work together to SHUT THEM DOWN!!!

  3. It seems that they need some deep support for customer support.

    What I have been reading about service and the response from Empower being a general apology. It seems that they need some deep support for customer support.

  4. Spoke to four representative and was very disappointed that no one could give me an answer.

    I called to move my money from my 401(K) to my Fidelity Account. The company I worked for went out of business in the third quarter and I was sent a form where it was indicated that I wanted the money transferred immediately. When I questioned why the money was not received yet,

    I was told that the Administrator of the company had to close the account which was April 30, 2019. When I asked if the money could be received by that date at the latest, the Empower representative indicated that nothing could be transferred until the Administrator closed the plan.

  5. I can only hope that my former employer has been made aware of this fiasco and can remedy it ASAP.

    from Voya to Empower. All services were disabled for 2 weeks to afford a smooth transition. Here we are, 9 days after the final “transition”, and i cannot navigate the system to transfer fund balances and seize some current market profits.

    In addition, I’ve called to question what paperwork is involved re beneficiary info (a form that needed to be notarized every 3 months by Voya), and was sent 27 pages of forms…..none of which seem applicable to my issue.

    Having read all the positive info from Empower prior to the switch, I was reassured that my former employer made a positive move. Now, after my personal experience and those of others on this site, I am disgusted with their choice. I can only hope that my former employer has been made aware of this fiasco and can remedy it ASAP.

  6. I dont see what the big issue is.

    I have been on the run around with them for 2 weeks now. The reps I have talked to keep telling me oh give it another week. Nothing has been solved. Wish that someone would take care of my issue. I quit my job last month on the 29th,and want my money. I dont see what the big issue is.

  7. What a great experience!

    What a great experience! I was advised to increase my deferred compensation, but had NO CLUE what to do. Called the number and got a hold of Jim K. at Empower Retirement. He walked me through the whole process…and when it comes to technology, I am not the brightest bulb in the package.

    He was patient and courteous even though he probably has done this same drill he took me through thousands of times. What a great experience. Jim and Empower have given me the confidence to take control of my retirement account. Thank you Jim and thank you Staci with an “I.” What a great group of people to work with.

  8. Worst EVER

    Have been trying to get my 401K money r/o to my IRA for the last 2 weeks! They are trying to tell me that I need to wait until I receive my last check from the employer-even though I declined elections to be taken. It makes absolute no sense.

    On top of this I am using this money to close on my house in 1 week and I can’t get an answer on when this will be fixed and if they will even be able to wire me the money. It’s absolutely insane that it takes this long for a simple withdrawal. This NEEDs to be fixed asap.

  9. NO ONE HAS GOTTEN IN CONTACT WITH US.

    Several days ago my husband got a check from Empower Retirement. He took the check to our bank and deposited it. The teller told my husband that the money would not be available until April 19th.

    Much to our surprise the money was in our checking account just a few days later. Hubby has written checks to pay off some bills, etc…. Then at the end of last week, hubby is checking our account and we are in the negative.

    I called the bank and was told that EMPOWER RETIREMENT had PUT A STOP ON THE CHECK. Couldn’t not get a straight answer from the guy my hubby talked to. All he could say was he would look into it and call back by 10PM that evening,

    NO PHONE CALL and our checks are being returned for insufficient funds. We have sent emails, made phone call and NO ONE HAS GOTTEN IN CONTACT WITH US.

  10. This NEEDs to be fixed asap.

    Have been trying to get my 401K money r/o to my IRA for the last 2 weeks! They are trying to tell me that I need to wait until I receive my last check from the employer-even though I declined elections to be taken. It makes absolute no sense.

    On top of this I am using this money to close on my house in 1 week and I can’t get an answer on when this will be fixed and if they will even be able to wire me the money. It’s absolutely insane that it takes this long for a simple withdrawal. This NEEDs to be fixed asap.

  11. Don't think this company is the type you want your RETIREMENT with

    Guess who lost my check… Closed out a retirement account and was not told about the the timeframe on which the check would be processed… (month later). Then they lost my check… didn’t know where it was… it got cut, but they had no tracking number for it, never showed.

    Then told to cancel and re-issue. Then they tell me it’ll be another 15 days for new check to be issued. Don’t think this company is the type you want your RETIREMENT with

  12. This NEEDs to be fixed asap.

    Have been trying to get my 401K money r/o to my IRA for the last 2 weeks! They are trying to tell me that I need to wait until I receive my last check from the employer-even though I declined elections to be taken. It makes absolute no sense.

    On top of this I am using this money to close on my house in 1 week and I can’t get an answer on when this will be fixed and if they will even be able to wire me the money. It’s absolutely insane that it takes this long for a simple withdrawal. This NEEDs to be fixed asap.

  13. Don't think this company is the type you want your RETIREMENT with.

    Guess who lost my check… Closed out a retirement account and was not told about the the timeframe on which the check would be processed… (month later). Then they lost my check…

    didn’t know where it was… it got cut, but they had no tracking number for it, never showed. Then told to cancel and re-issue. Then they tell me it’ll be another 15 days for new check to be issued.

  14. This company has horrendous customer service

    They charged me $30 a quarter to maintain an employer based account – I spent more on this company in one year than I could hope to make in interest in years.

    When I left that company and tried to roll over the accounts, they pushed me to open an IRA with them before finally agreeing to roll over the money to my existing IRA.

    They issued the check to Charles Schwab, but sent it to a random address rather than sending it to Schwab. When after two months the money had still not gone through to Schwab, I reached out to them and realized this error.

    Empower informed me despite having asked for all of Schwab’s account information they could not send the checks directly to Schwab, would need to confirm my address with Experian and then could reissue the checks 15 days later.

    When I asked why this process hadn’t been explained to me when I made the initial request, the representative became rude and started over enunciating her words to be “clear”.

  15. I have written a couple very negative reviews

    I have written a couple very negative reviews of Empower Retirement already regarding our 401k account experiences and this is no different. It is pointless to rehash what I think of their horrible customer service, antiquated & slow technology, and all the errors they make. I keep seeing “sorry for your negative experience” from Empower on reviewa but nothing ever changes with their service.

  16. Never Again

    Empower says they make Q updates to their participant website but the changes are not particularly helpful. The last update caused the table format to be deleted so to save anything to my computer, I have to change the “print” setting to “save” and save as a PDF. To copy & paste,

    I have to “paste special”. An “update” in January was an annual contribution section on their home page. I noticed they had left out the contribution for January 4th pay day (pay period ending Dec 31). I pointed this out and an IT associate stated income, contributions, etc were included in the year they were earned, not when paid.

  17. They are incompetent.

    What a joke! We’ve been advised by our attorney and broker to write a ‘written’ complaint, which they are required to report to the SEC. We will also file a complaint through the SEC website.

    It’s quite a bit to report, from them saying they didn’t receive our faxes, said the PDF file was all blank pages, to the incorrect way they handled the in-kind transfer. They are incompetent.

  18. I could given zero rating.

    Heft fee structure for all the funds and low performance. They charged me even after I withdrew all my money. Wish I could given zero rating.

  19. Everytime I try to login to their site it seems to be under maintenance on a weekend.

    They dont have personal rate of return or I think they took it away so it makes it impossible to see how your investments are doing. Seems like nobody complained.

    Every other retirement investment manager has this personal rate of return for year. Everytime I try to login to their site it seems to be under maintenance on a weekend.

  20. Horrible customer service.

    Horrible customer service. I have been disconnected, told different things from different people, rude and they do not want to HELP.

  21. Scammer

    They charged me $30 a quarter to maintain an employer based account – I spent more on this company in one year than I could hope to make in interest in years.

    When I left that company and tried to roll over the accounts, they pushed me to open an IRA with them before finally agreeing to roll over the money to my existing IRA.

    They issued the check to Charles Schwab, but sent it to a random address rather than sending it to Schwab. When after two months the money had still not gone through to Schwab, I reached out to them and realized this error.

  22. Never Again

    Empower informed me despite having asked for all of Schwab’s account information they could not send the checks directly to Schwab, would need to confirm my address with Experian and then could reissue the checks 15 days later.

    When I asked why this process hadn’t been explained to me when I made the initial request, the representative became rude and started over enunciating her words to be “clear”.

    It’s infuriating that I have had to manage so much of this poorly executed transfer. I pay you to not have to babysit these accounts. This process has done nothing but made me more thankful I no longer have to deal with your company.

  23. Very rude!

    They need to assign each call an ID number so if a participant has to call back, the CSR can look up the call. Empower needs to update their processes so if someone requests a withdrawal,

    it doesn’t take 2 weeks to get to them. Empower seems to intentionally make everything difficult for Participants…..unless you are putting money into their coffers.

    They made a couple mistakes when my husband’s company transferred to Empower and finally put the money in the correct sources. I would have filed ERISA & FINRA complaints had they not. Calling CSRs would have gotten us nowhere.

    I went through the VP/Participant Services so it isn’t easy to contact anyone who can actually make something happen. Be a squeaky wheel. We ended up working with a couple nice people but in the end, complaints went nowhere.

  24. Scammer

    The fee was contrary to our Plan Document, the employer pays the fee; Empower had neglected to include this in their system. This was supposed to be fixed in Nov — until my sister retired from the same company and rolled over her account to another company in June.

    Empower still charged her the $50 fee, Seriously!? Did the CSR even check the employer’s Plan Document? Why did the fee even appear in the system to charge the Participant if the issue was fixed in Empower’s system? She had to go through the employer’s Plan Admin to get her fee back.

  25. Horrible retirement service.

    Horrible retirement service. No help what so ever.

  26. I will be removing the rest of my assets.

    They are still blaming Chase, and this is out of their hands although I was misled by empower and I’m in this position because of Empower. They are a bunch of liars and as soon as I find another investment company, I will be removing the rest of my assets.

  27. Bad Service Provide

    As an update, regarding Empower’s posting of Revenue Sharing credits. Apparently Empower lies about its accounting practices or they think customers are too stupid to notice. We have 6 funds receiving RS credits, 4 funds do not.

    The total, about $26/month, had been added to the fund we contribute to. We received a letter in late June from a Lead Regulatory Correspondent stating Empower was enhancing their record keeping platform and would soon be posting RS credits to the fund that produced them.

  28. He did not know they are a monthly contracte

    He did not know they are a monthly contracted credit. Not only did he not know what RS credits are, he tried to tell me if I clicked the blue hyperlink for the transaction’s confirmation number

    I would see what fund the RS credit came from (my complaint is they do not identify which funds get which amount of RS credit each month that is listed in Transactions and that the total is added to whatever fund(s) a participant contributes to instead of going back into the fund that received the RS credit). When he tried on his end, he realized I was correct.

    I was annoyed that someone would call and give me false explanations. Do they think participants are so stupid? I felt he was patronizing and condescending.

  29. Letter referring to a non-existent retirement plan I supposedly own

    I received a letter from Empower Retirement stating “Please read this notification carefully to understand the upcoming investment option changes to your plan…’TP USA 4-01(k) Plan has directed Empower Retirement to complete some updates regarding the investment option(s) in your plan.” At the end of the letter I am urged to make changes by “Visiting your plan’s Website at empowermyretirement.com.” Or “Contacting a representative… at 1-800-338-4015.”

    I am assuming that this is a scam to either get personal information from the recipient (by the way, my name was misspelled on the letter), or to have the recipient contact the company and get a sales pitch. Certainly, senior citizens who are impaired are the target of this scam. I hope this information will alert others not to fall for this #@#!

  30. Don't use this company.

    Don’t use this company. They don’t make it easy to do rollovers and they like to charge fees they can’t explain for doing a rollover.

  31. Avoid this company at all costs.

    This company is terrible. My employer used Principal Financial which was averaging 8-9% return and switched to this joke of an investment firm. They’re averaging – 7.5% loss for the year so far.This is a retirement fund. If I could give a negative star rating, I would. Avoid this company at all costs.

  32. Scammer

    Garbage Benefits Provider, Garbage Website

  33. I recently left a company.

    I recently left a company. When I went to cash out MY!!!!!!! money, I was told it would be unavailable for six months. Why can’t I have the money that is mine? Six months! That is ridiculous. What a poorly ran company. If you are an employer looking for a company, skip this one.

  34. Told my coworkers and they want to back out too.

    Negative Stars! I am in the middle of submitting a hardship application and keep getting the run around. First I submitted it with the wrong application and they told me they were going to email me the correct one but they never did. I searched for the correct one and sent that in and now was told my included documents were not valid…okay

    Why didn’t you tell me this when I sent my request the first time? They are so quick to take your money but when you really need it and follow the rules on requesting it they make you jump through hoops for your own money. IT’S MY FREAKING MONEY!!!! Crooks and horrible customer service. Told my coworkers and they want to back out too.

    Also my balance keeps changing, it goes up it goes down. But I check the transaction history it doesn’t reflect any recent activity but my balance keeps changing??? Crooks!!!!!! Keep your money away from this company. I’m going to email HR and the CEO of the company I work for so that this doesn’t happen to anyone else.

  35. After calling, they simply said that expedited applied ONLY to the delivery

    I closed out my account on December 12. It was a rollover to another IRA, so I paid for expedited delivery to have the rollover processed in. I finally received the checks the last week of January.

    Today, I received my summary for the first quarter and discovered that they charged me $50.00 for expedited delivery (5 weeks ??). After calling, they simply said that expedited applied ONLY to the delivery, there was no urgency to Empower’s processing of the request.

  36. Bad Service

    My father worked there for awhile and felt a little un-patriotic at times as US profits headed right back to the Canadian parent company Great-West Lifeco.

  37. We have sent emails, made phone call and NO ONE HAS GOTTEN IN CONTACT WITH US.

    Several days ago my husband got a check from Empower Retirement. He took the check to our bank and deposited it. The teller told my husband that the money would not be available until April 19th. Much to our surprise the money was in our checking account just a few days later.

    Hubby has written checks to pay off some bills, etc…. Then at the end of last week, hubby is checking our account and we are in the negative. I called the bank and was told that EMPOWER RETIREMENT had PUT A STOP ON THE CHECK.

    Couldn’t not get a straight answer from the guy my hubby talked to. All he could say was he would look into it and call back by 10PM that evening, NO PHONE CALL and our checks are being returned for insufficient funds. We have sent emails, made phone call and NO ONE HAS GOTTEN IN CONTACT WITH US.

  38. We thought we had found a great retirement firm until we went to liquidate the funds owed us

    We thought we had found a great retirement firm until we went to liquidate the funds owed us. Originally we were told it’d take 5-7 business days to get funds even when using a power of attorney document. We can’t even get the CEO to answer our emails!

  39. So of course I was unable to receive it because it was not the instructions given to them.

    It is unbelievable the amount of reviews that I am seeing consistent with what I am currently experiencing and have been experiencing for the last 6 weeks. I sent in paperwork to have my money moved to another 401K as I was no longer with the employer.

    They mailed the check to an old address as I am no longer even in the state instead of the new retirement bank even though the instructions were clear and I verified it with the representative. They mailed it regular mail…a retirement check…regular mail! So of course I was unable to receive it because it was not the instructions given to them.

    I then called to speak with a supervisor and Matt Hudson went back and forth giving me a run around after I faxed a notarized letter last Wednesday directly from the new retirement company with a confirmation with my new address so that it could be expedited. I was told it would be overnighted to me and the fees waived. Did not happen.

    I had to go spend money, time and effort faxing it yet again and speak with another supervisor since…well Matt simply disappeared. Finally I speak with Denise on Friday and she tells me she’s received the fax but that oh…no ones in the office today so nothing will be processed until Monday…

    however…rest assured she will get it processed first thing as soon as someone gets in the office. It is now 5:30pm on Tuesday and was the check overnighted to me? Is it finally in my hands as promised?

  40. It shouldn't be this difficult

    Can’t count how often I’ve called this company to assist me to simply transfer the 401K assets of my spouse into an account in my name in accordance with a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) signed by a judge and issued by a court on 13 February. Empower says they never received the order sent to them by my attorney in February.

    I personally faxed a copy of the QDRO to Empower on 9 March and my attorney sent them a copy on 12 March. According to Empower representatives, it takes 2–3 weeks for their legal department to review a 3-page court order and then send it to someone to punch a couple of buttons to actually make the transfer.

    In the interim, I’ve had to keep cancelling attorney appointments which delay my submitting the necessary paperwork to apply for MEDICAID for my disabled spouse. Despite my pleas to expedite the process, Empower doesn’t seem to care that I’m paying a nursing home facility $7,000 per month out-of-pocket while they take their time to process the transfer and provide me a letter certifying the assets have been transferred so the MEDICAID application process can begin. It shouldn’t be this difficult, Empower…

  41. I'm concerned now that the implementation just lost my funds!

    Empower failed to provide written announcements on a outage to convert to their Empower Retirement plan. Our Payroll department obtained a soft-copy and distributed it to staff after the black-out had started.

    We have not been able to see our balances since and the last transaction in my history has that date and described as a distribution. A distribution I cannot view – says: “Your plan does not allow this option”.

    I’ve been through numerous plan black-outs in my 40+ years being in qualified plans. Never has I seen such a poor implementation. I’m concerned now that the implementation just lost my funds!

  42. I just want them to send me my money.

    I have to admit that I had not had any issues with Great West, now Empower prior to this year. As a physician we are allowed to set aside money in a “Rabbi trust” which is a non qualified plan which is basically a salary deferral.

    This year’s distribution was removed from my account on Feb 5th,. My employer’s part was immediately paid to me in my next paycheck. I did not receive my part of the deferred salary that I had put away so I made a call on Feb 20th to customer service.

    I was told it might take up to 10 business days to arrive. On the 22nd it still had not arrived so I called back and after discussing it with the customer service rep made the decision to stop payment on the check. I was given the number on the check so that if it did arrive not to cash it and wait for the new check.

    I was told it would take 5 to 10 business days before the new check would arrive but would most likely be less. I have had prior distributions over the last 10 years and they have been very prompt.

  43. I requested a withdrawal of my 401 because an urgent financial situation to pay my bills after I lost my employment.

    I also consider that joining empower retirement is a mistake but it was the retirement company my employer was working with. I requested a withdrawal of my 401 because an urgent financial situation to pay my bills after I lost my employment. I received an email that the check was mailed on Friday, February 2, and that will take up to 5 business days.

    Today is Wednesday, February 21, and still no check on site. I called customer service and they said that the check has not been cashed yet and they can put a stop payment and issue another which can delay another 3 or more weeks.

    I decided to wait until Friday, February 23, and see if I can finally get the check, hopefully will arrive since my utility bills can wait any longer. Please beware of this company! I never heard of a retirement company that takes that long with the payment. They should start working with UPS (which issue a tracking number) instead of the USPS where have no way to track the check.

  44. Is this company even real?

    Got a letter from Empower retirement under a name that has over the years appeared on my credit report but is not, nor has ever been my legal name (and with my first name misspelled). I called the number listed and the first thing the asked for was my SSN. Not giving that out on the phone to a company I know nothing about. Waited for a person… they said (even though I had an account number listed, that they could not look my account up without my SSN – again, not giving that out to just anyone). A week later I got a check for $383.00 under the Never-been-my-legal-name. And it’s just sitting in my purse. Can’t cash it, it’s not my legal name, can’t get it fixed because I won’t give out my SSN to strangers over the phone. Kind of stuck in limbo. I did have a retirement fund out in CO back in 2001 that I never got my money out of – so that could be it, but how am I supposed to know when they won’t just look up the account by the account number? Overall, if this is a real company, they are super sketchy.

Englewood 80111 CO US
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Reviews:44
Reported Loss :12547 $
Severity of Scam :Extremely High
Reported by : Anonymous
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