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HELP - Gym Membership / Harlands / CRS


Volcom27
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Hi Everyone,

 

I've been having an ongoing battle with this issue for almost a year now so was hoping you could help, it's quite long winded and Unfortunately as it was so long ago you'll have to forgive me as i cant quite recall all exact details and since it went away for so long i had considered the matter closed so got rid of all evidence when moving house.

 

Here's the situation (started around february 2015) . . I was a member of Choices Health Club - Also a member of the dreaded harlands group. I wanted to cancel my gym membership, however I had lost my contract and didnt know the correct terms of cancellation.

 

I first of all contacted them on facebook, a previous channel of communication of which they'd frequently used with myself and typically replied within 1 hour) I know the read this as you get the read receipt on facebook but no reply.

 

I went into the gym and spoke to the woman on reception, I explained I wished to cancel my membership but had lost my contract what did I have to do. She told me that because it was within the first 12 months I could use this as my notice and cancel my direct debit after the following months payment. So this is what I did and I also wrote back on facebook saying "i'll just cancel my direct debit then" - again, they read this (i took a print screen) but never said anything to tell me I wasn't allowed to do this?

 

I heard nothing more of it and considered the matter closed. I moved house shortly after this, now, since I had considered the matter closed and probably forgotten about by this time I did not inform the gym I had moved (why would I, as far as I was concerned I had nothing more to do with them?) around 6 months into the new property I received a letter from a debt collection agency (the letter I have now lost unfotunately). This letter stated that I had breached my contract and had to provide 3 months notice (would've been happy to pay this had I been told) which would've come to something like £60 odd.

 

It also said that I had failed to respond to 3 letters that the gym had sent warning me i had missed payments, I went to my old house and spoke with the current occupiers because they had always text me if I ever received post at that address, I did indeed have post to collect. But not a single letter from the gym to that address warning of missed payments. In addition to this, they slapped on charges for "tracking me down" due to change of address and the subsequent total amount came to over £300+!!

 

Stupidly I rang the agency, and explained all of this to them, I said I had not received any letters, asked for proof of these letters being sent and said I felt no need to inform the gym I had moved as far as I was aware I had ended all relationship with them. They said they were going to look into it/investigate further and get back in touch...they never did.

 

A good few months passed and I started receiving texts from CRS and automated phonecalls demanding that I contact them or further legal action will be taken etc. Checked on the internet and this website with the "whos calling me" things and found out it was CRS and noticed a lot of people on here saying to ignore because they're just bullies. So I did.

 

Finally, last week I received an email from Zinc Group saying the debt had been passed on to them and that if I Paid it within 7days I'd only have to pay £150ish. I only read the email today so I've subsequently missed this "offer".

 

Because nothing had been sent to me in writing, only texts and phonecalls by CRS, I ignored it, thinking if it was something to take seriously, they would send me a letter. Now Zinc group have emailed me despite having my new address at the top of their emails so I know they have my current address (I have moved AGAIN since as I have bought my own house) why wouldn't they send me a letter?

 

What if i never used this email account anymore etc? I'd never have any knowledge that this was happening on my record.

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated and if you want any exact details and numbers i'll try and provide them if I still have the information. Thank you for your help JJ

Edited by slick132
Spacing !!
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Hi VC and welcome to CAG

 

Please use spacing when posting as large solid blocks of text are awful to try and read. I've sorted it for you already.

 

Take time to see other threads and you'll see Harlands/CRS are the most written-about gym admin Co. by far. Once you've done the right things, you can mostly ignore Harlands/CRS, Zinc and Spratt Endicott.

 

1. When did you give notice to cancel verbally at the gym.

 

2. Do you have copies of written contact via Facebook.

 

3. When was your DD normally paid each month.

 

4. What date was your last DD paid to Harlands.

 

That's all the info we need for now and, in the meantime, make NO further contact with anyone by phone or any other means.

 

:-)

Edited by slick132

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Hi Slick, Thanks for the response,

I did actually have it all spaced out when I initially wrote it out on Word,

it then blocked it together when posted,

 

 

so I went back in and edited it putting the spaces back in,

 

 

and it did it again when I tried to save the changes.

Weird! Sorry about that.

 

 

Yes i've noticed they seem to be the most reoccuring people on here!

 

 

In answer to your questions:

 

 

1. When did you give notice to cancel verbally at the gym -

It was a few days after the facebook message

 

 

I sent them stating I wish to cancel, have lost my contract, how do I do it etc.

This was sent on the 14th March 2015

 

 

2. Do you have copies of written contact via Facebook.

- Yes still have the messages on facebook and also took print screens incase they were ever lost.

 

 

3. When was your DD normally paid each month. - 09th of Each Month

 

 

4. What date was your last DD paid to Harlands. - 09th March 2015

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It's done it again! had it all spaced out on different lines etc. Dont know what's going on. My replies to your questions should also be in red to make it easier to read

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word is a word processor

 

 

you cant copy the hidden control characters' like tabs/bullet points into a web based forum.

 

 

use notepad

then copy and paste

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

DCA's view debtors as suckers, marks and mugs

NO DCA has ANY legal powers whatsoever on ANY debt no matter what it's Type

and they

are NOT and can NEVER  be BAILIFFS. even if a debt has been to court..

If everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's Tomorrow, their industry would collapse overnight... 

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Thanks for the tip, it was only the first long message I sent by first typing it on word. My second response where it did it again, I typed straight through browser. Weird

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Hi VC

 

Hope you've got the posting format issue sorted now.

 

Can you also please confirm the approx gym joining date.

 

:-)

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Thanks !:-)

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Unfortunately can't remember the exact date and don't have my contract (how I got into this mess! ) but my bank statement says "first payment" and it's double the normal payment so I'm guessing a month before my first payment which was 11th August. Most likely it was the 9th July

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Hi VC,

 

I assume you joined July 2014 - is this correct.

 

If so, you were committed to pay further fees for April, May and June 2015 unless you were able to cancel due to redundancy, health or moving home.

 

Harlands did not require 3 months notice for you to cancel - they would have required you to pay the final 3 months of the initial 12 month agreement.

 

HOWEVER, if you were told by the gym staff to pay just one month's fee and then cancel the DD, you acted in good faith.

 

I'd now write to Harlands telling them :-

I cancelled in accordance with instructions given to me by gym staff at the time, paying one further fee and then cancelling the DD mandate.

 

I contacted the gym in writing at the time confirming my actions and they did not reply telling me I owed anything further. I have proof of this contact stored safely.

 

Accordingly, I will pay you nothing in response to your demands for outstanding gym fees and your added admin fees.

 

I require that you instruct Zinc, and anyone else you use, to make no further demands of me.

 

Send this to their Haywards Heath address and get a free Certificate of Posting from the PO when you send the letter.

 

:-)

We could do with some help from you

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Thanks !:-)

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Letter was sent yesterday, got the certificate of posting, have a scanned copy of it incase it gets lost. Wait and see what they come back with if anything! Havent actually heard from Harlands themselves since the very start....only emails from their "underlings"

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Hi Volcom,

 

Harlands/CRS can take weeks to respond to letters but they usually manage to ignore them and, instead, just write demanding increasing amounts.

 

Keep us updated.

 

:-)

We could do with some help from you

                                                                PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING

EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

                                            Have we helped you ...?  Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

Please give something if you can. We all give our time free of charge but the site has bills to pay.

 

Thanks !:-)

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Well it will be interesting to see if they write back at all! All previous communication has been via email through their other masks, now they have my correct address they might actually send me the first of the many letters they claimed to have sent me!

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  • 1 year later...

Well, over a year later they finally sent me another email,

 

Today I received this from CRS

 

Your file has recently been returned to us by our external agents.

 

 

According to our records, you still have an outstanding balance of £321.6, in connection with Choices Health Club.

 

 

Please call us today on 01444 449165 between 08:30am and 6:00pm to discuss repayment of your balance. A payment plan can be set up if you're unable to pay the balance in one go.

 

 

Your reference number is XXXXXXXXXXX .

 

 

If you would prefer us to call you, please confirm a suitable telephone number to reach you on.

 

 

Many thanks,

 

 

Rob Avery

 

Any advice what to do now?

 

Thanks

JJ

Edited by Volcom27
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Hi Volcom,

 

You have to admire their tenacity ! :wink:

 

Just ignore their desperate plea - if they were in the least bit serious about taking proper collection action, they'd have taken court action ages back.

 

However, they don't TAKE court action !!

 

No action required at all.

 

:-)

We could do with some help from you

                                                                PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING

EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

                                            Have we helped you ...?  Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

Please give something if you can. We all give our time free of charge but the site has bills to pay.

 

Thanks !:-)

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Ok thanks, do they eventually just give up then? or is this just going to keep going on and on? over 2 years they've been at this and it's getting quite tiresome! Will having this still active against me affect my credit rating at all?

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Never shows on credit files

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

DCA's view debtors as suckers, marks and mugs

NO DCA has ANY legal powers whatsoever on ANY debt no matter what it's Type

and they

are NOT and can NEVER  be BAILIFFS. even if a debt has been to court..

If everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's Tomorrow, their industry would collapse overnight... 

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Share on other sites

Hi Volcom,

 

DX is right - this will not affect your credit files at all.

 

If you're fed up with ongoing harassment, you can take Harlands to court seeking nominal damages for their ongoing harassment. That would stop them for good and would be be relatively cheap. When you win against them, you'll get nominal damages at the court's discretion and your court costs back too.

 

If interested, let us know and we'll guide you through the process.

 

:-)

We could do with some help from you

                                                                PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING

EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

                                            Have we helped you ...?  Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

Please give something if you can. We all give our time free of charge but the site has bills to pay.

 

Thanks !:-)

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