Western Reserve Life TransAmerica is the parent company. Annuity from That Hot Place Below Cedar Rapids, Iowa – I was told about Western Reserve Life by a co-worker that was breaking into the business. She has since severed her ties with this company, for good reason I’m sure. I was told at the time I signed on the dotted line that this would be a 5 year annuity. This met my plans at the time for future retirement. I was told that there would be penalties for early withdrawal and shown a sliding scale of penalties. I signed and transferred my IRA that was not performing, based on the fact that the salesman assured me I would do much better making money with this company. What a lie! In the 5 years I have had my money tied up in Western Reserve Life, I have merely paid fees and lost money. The fees are unbelievable and never the same. I recently found out that the annuity is really for 8 years. This means I can’t touch the money, whatever might be left by then, without penalties that start at 5% and decrease to 0% over the coming years. By the time this annuity is available to me without fees, and I’m sure there will be fees unknown at this time by then, I will be collecting Social Security. I’m positive I would not have tied up this money past my Social Security age! Nothing to prove his lies, however. Because of early job loss, I need to withdraw money from this Annuity starting this year. I was told by the Customer Service voice that I should fill out a “systematic withdrawal” form to begin monthly distribution, including 5% penalty. I filled out the form and sent it in on April 6, 2019. The process was to withdraw the monthly amount on April 25, 2019, which would make the money arrive by direct deposit by the 1st of May, 2019. On April 29, 2019 I received a letter dated April 11, 2019 (didn’t know we still use Pony Express in America!), stating that I would not be able to have systematic withdrawals because the amount requested was more than 10% of my “gains” and/or my account balance, not exactly sure which since Customer Service is so very useless. So, I will not get a May withdrawal, or any other withdrawal until I fill out another form called Annuity Distribution Form, which by the way is the first form I started with, but was convinced to change to the Systematic Form by another useless Customer Service Rep. Now, I am afraid to know how long it will take to actually receive a withdrawal, I have to take a lump sum instead of a monthly withdrawal, and I will have to do two of those in order to reduce the penalty from 5% to 4% in August. Or so I’m told now. I had to keep asking different people over a period of six months to find out what the actual date of penalty free withdrawal would be for this annuity. I was told the date I turned 59 1/2, obviously they thought I was asking about Federal penalties, even though I asked about Company penalties. I kept getting that answer no matter who I asked until someone finally told me it was an 8 year annuity, not 5 year annuity. They can’t be trusted to answer a simple answer accurately. At this time I have no “account manager”, as I refuse to deal with the guy that lied in 2006 about this annuity. He serves no purpose but accepting his fees. I was finally told today that I need to take him off my account in writing, even though I requested it several times in the past. They took him off once without my knowledge, then put him back on! I will be living in my car soon, without that withdrawal I have no money to live on. They don’t care at all, they will still get my fees, even withdrawing money from my account when they don’t make enough to cover those fees. I am so frustrated by this company’s lack of competence and wrong answers and inability to actually make a dime on my behalf, I just wish I could get some form of justice. I know it is all my fault for not seeing the truth at the time. But, really, how many of us have a lawyer at our beck and call to check these contracts each and every time. I know I don’t read lawyer speak very well, even though I try, and I keep getting ripped off by greedy companies and sales people. I am intelligent enough to have programmed mainframe computers, very successfully, for 28 years as a career. I’m not stupid. But I can be fooled! Shame on you Western Reserve Life, Trans America, and Foxhall (a company that took fees too until I kept throwing their lies about performance back in their faces. Then they severed our relationship! While they were losing my money, and making excuses for it, my 401K, managed by me, was making a small amount. They didn’t like it when I pointed this out to them! The 401K is long gone now, early job loss, etc. So, I will fill out the latest form, and see what they come up with next to prevent my existence and refuse to give me back my money!