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tc14051

Fitness club claiming we signed up to a long-term contract, now being chased by debt-collection.

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My girlfriend and I went along to a trial session at a local fitness centre we had been told about.

After the session, we sat down in the café and received a free (freshly ground) coffee as we discussed joining permanently with the trainer.

The conversation was brief, 5 mins max.

 

It involved an iPad on which she showed us the booking app they use and details of the different memberships.

We opted for the couples membership at £88.20 per month (endorphin levels were sky high so this sounded like a great deal at the time) plus we get some free gear and a club-branded item of clothing of our choice, each.

 

The club was only a few weeks old at the time, and it seemed like the trainer who was signing us up didn't know exactly how to navigate the sign-up procedure, but we got there in the end. We handed over personal details and my girlfriend gave her bank details for the direct debit to be taken out each month.

We immediately had to pay a pro-rata fee of £67.62 for the first month (September), oh and a joining fee of £50 (!?).

 

A few weeks later and reality hit, we were never going to get our moneys worth from this club and had only been a handful of times in the first couple of months (lets just blame it on our 'busy' lifestyle)

 

We paid again at the beginning October but then my girlfriend finally rang up to cancel.

This is when she gets told that actually she can't cancel the membership as (duh) we signed up to a 6-month contract.

Instead, they suggested that 'we had joined for a reason why don't we just pop down and give it another go'.

 

My girlfriend expressed her surprise at the fact that we were committed to anything, to which they told her all of the details were in her contract.

She went on to ask for a copy of this contract, that she had never seen before.

 

They did email her a copy of a black and white contract, which was filled in with her details and with all of the terms and conditions.

It included our joining date and commitment period end date.

 

At the bottom, there is an Application Declaration section, with signature boxes which were (obviously) blank, because this was the first time either of us had seen this contract.

Page 2, there was a physical activity readiness questionnaire (blank with empty signature box)

Page 3 was a copy of her direct debit (blank with empty signature boxes)

 

She informed the club that she was cancelling her direct debit as these contracts they had sent were quite clearly unsigned by herself, and that she was never informed and/or agreed to the long-term contract. They never acknowledged this email.

 

Fast forward a couple of months and she receives an email from a debt collection agency after a payment of £610.26.

She rang this agency and told them the whole story.

They agreed to put everything on hold and contact the club.

 

The next day, she receives an email from the agency stating that they had contacted the club and they had been advised by their client, that we set up our membership via a tablet they handed to us, that we had agreed to tick and had agreed the terms and conditions in order to proceed.

And that they had no written confirmation of us wishing to cancel our membership (bull****)

 

Therefore they look forward to our payment (of which late fees had been added)

Their t&c's actually say they may charge a fee of no more than £15 for failed direct debit payments and any unpaid fees referred to a debt collection agency will be subject to a charge of no more than £30?

But that's besides the point.

 

We/my gf were never told about the commitment period, and never signed anything.

They sent us a copy of a completely blank contract.

 

We're only 24/25 and have no experience of anything like this, do we just ride it out?

Could we be caught out somewhere along the line, even with them having no signature?

We've watched hours of Can't pay we'll take it away, should we expect to see ourselves on Channel 5 next year?

 

Thanks in advance for any help.

P.S. We never received our t-shirts.

Edited by dx100uk
spacing

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Have a read of other threads here. Your experience is the same as those. It's nothing to worry aboit


Any advice i give is my own and is based solely on personal experience. If in any doubt about a situation , please contact a certified legal representative or debt counsellor..

 

 

If my advice helps you, click the star icon at the bottom of my post and feel free to say thanks

:D

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Hi TC and welcome to CAG

 

Please confirm the name of the gym and of the collection company.

 

Don't expect to be on Channel 5 TV any time soon. In our considerable experience over many years, we've seen only one case go to court and that was dropped like a hot potato as soon as the claim was defended.

 

Don't respond to the collection demands by phone or any other means for now.

 

:-)


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Bailiffs only come AFTER you lose a court case

you fail to pay it in 28days

the court allows them to be used.

 

and as gyms don't do court...as slick says - nothing to worry about

 

a DCA is NOT A BAILIFF

they have

ZERO legal powers

safe to totally ignore

 

dx


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