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How do I Choose a Legitimate Investment Seminar?

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  • Written By: Angela Johnson
  • Edited By: Amanda L. Wardle
  • Last Modified Date: 20 September 2016
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There are many fraudulent companies offering free investment seminars. These companies may offer free meals or other incentives as a tactic to draw in unqualified investors, and may then engage in high pressure sales tactics in an attempt to force an investment. These illegitimate opportunities may be avoided with some due diligence. Investigating host companies, obtaining information on the investment opportunity prior to the seminar, asking questions at the seminar, and saving investment decisions until after the seminar is completed may all help to avoid fraudulent investments. The saying, "There is no free lunch," can sometimes be true, so investment seminars offering high pressure sales tactics should be considered carefully.

An investment seminar may be sponsored by a different company than the company or individual who has sent the invitation. This tactic may be used to offer some legitimacy and to give potential attendees a false sense of security. A legitimate company will rarely use another source to entice invitees. Determining who is sponsoring a seminar is a key step in choosing a legitimate investment seminar.

Governing agencies and regulators that oversee the financial industry can be good sources of information regarding an organization's legitimacy and reputation. These agencies may be able to help determine whether a seminar is indeed offered by a legitimate company. Such governing bodies can also shed light on the regulations that a good organization will or should follow during the seminar, as well.

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Usually, it will be possible to contact the organization sponsoring an investment seminar prior to attending. The contact information should be on the invitation or in the ad for the seminar. Contacting the company directly and asking for literature on the company's products can offer a sound background, allowing an individual to carefully determine whether an investment opportunity through the company is authentic.

Determining the risk factors involved when investing in a product is crucial to knowing all the facts. Most local, state, or regional governing bodies require risk disclosure when investment opportunities are presented. Prospective investors must often meet certain income requirements and other qualifications before being invited to invest. Asking questions about potential risks will often provide helpful information on the legitimacy of an investment opportunity.

Walking away from the investment seminar and making a decision about investment after the fact can help individuals to avoid impulse sales resulting from high pressure sales tactics. Certain seminars offering free perks to attendees may be expecting reciprocity. A legitimate investment seminar will allow potential investors to consider the opportunity before making a commitment.

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