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Gold's Gym Sucks!


greengiant912
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So anyways, about a year ago I was looking for a new gym and this Gold's Gym opened up in town. At the time it seemed like a really great gym. For the first few months things were fine, but then I started noticing the attitude of the employees. A group of them were huddled in a corner of the facility and were talking about a lady across the room who was fairly overweight. They were literally making fun of her, and degrading her behind her back. I found this very unprofessional and decided right then and there that this wasn't the environment I was looking for..

 

The next day I contact their manager and inform them about what had happened, and notified him that I wished to cancel my membership. Initially I was told when I signed up for the membership that I could cancel at anytime with a fee like most agreements have. Needless to say when I talked to him, he informed me that I was unable to cancel my contract until 2011!!! I told him that this was not the case as I was told before I signed the agreement that I would be able to cancel...

 

I am the kind of guy who asks a lot of questions before signing an agreement. I would have never signed it unless I was sure I could get out of it, as which most people would... I am no lawyer and I did read the agreement, and it seemed like what the employee told me was true. That I could cancel at anytime with a written letter and possibly a fee involved.

 

So in December I called their corporate office and really complained after not receiving any results with the branch. I actually talked with one of the owners of the Franchise. He stated that he could freeze my account for 3 months, which I didn't understand why he could do that and not cancel my account. He also stated that in three months if I felt I was still in the same situation we could come to an agreement then.. Words got a little heated and I left it at that for three months...

 

So the three months have passed and they have started to charge my credit card again, I contact them and the are still staying to their guns. They have gone back on their promises to come to an agreement, and have overall just insulted me even more.

 

They want to continue to charge me for an additional year, even though they know that I will never step foot in their facilities again. Which I don't think is right....

 

I have offered to pay them $100 to end my membership and they have refused. With most cellphone companies you can get out of agreements for a fee... Why not this?

 

After reading the agreement several times I know that there is not much recourse unless both parties decided to dissolve this agreement. Or if I move away 25 miles or more. Or get a doctors excuse...

 

I am pretty much screwed here and don't know of any additional recourse I can take. Maybe someone can provide some more insight....

 

Here is the agreement:

1. Default. Member shall be in default under the terms of this transaction for nonpayment, as defined in Section 425.108(2), Wis. Stats., or upon

breach or failure to observe any other covenant of this transaction. Upon default, Seller may, at its option, without notice declare the entire obligation

remaining unpaid immediately due and payable, unless notice and opportunity to cure is required by Sections 425.104 and 425.105 Wis. Stats. in which

case said amounts shall become immediately due and payable if the default is not cured within the 15 day period allowed therein. Should member

default, member agrees to pay all costs of collection, including agency fees, court costs, and reasonable attorney fees, all of which may be paid or incurred

by the holder of this note.

2. Cancellation and Refunds. Right to Cancel - Member is permitted to cancel this contract until midnight of the 3rd operating

day after the date on which Member signs this contract. If within this time period Member decides to cancel this contract, then

Member may do so by notifying Seller in writing, mailed or delivered to the Seller at the address shown in this contract, within the

previously described time period. If Member does so cancel, any payments made by Member, less a user fee of no more than $3.00 per day

of actual use, will be refunded within 21 days after notice of cancellation is delivered, and any evidence of any indebtedness executed by

Member will be canceled by Seller and arrangements will be made to relieve Member of any future obligations to pay same. Member

further agrees that failure to attend the club and utilize its programs and facilities does not relieve member of payment of this

contract, regardless of the circumstances, unless otherwise provided herein.

(a) Relocation or Geographical Move.

1. In the event a Member in good standing moves permanently 35 miles or more away from Seller’s present facility and said

Member relocates to a location which is more than 35 miles from any other operating, affiliated facility, and has a remaining balance of

greater than or equal to $50.00 then Member may cancel the membership agreement upon payment of a cancellation fee of $50.00. A

member may apply for cancellation by providing Seller with a copy of their phone or utility bill identifying the new address and phone

number and further identifying that it both exceeds a distance of 35 miles from the present facility and is not within 35 miles from an

affiliated operating facility. Member must contact seller prior to relocation to determine the location of any affiliated facilities. Cancellation

by geographical move shall terminate Member’s obligation to pay installment fees from the date of cancellation, but shall not

effect any membership fees paid, or installments paid, and no membership fees shall be refunded unless within Members right to a 3 day

cancellation.

3. Unavailability of Facilities or Services. If any of the facilities or services described in this agreement become unavailable or are no longer

fully operational, before full receipt of the services and use of the facilities for which Member contracted, Member is liable for only that portion of the

total consideration proportional to the elapsed time portion of the contract at the time of the unavailability. Member is entitled to a refund of any other

funds already paid. Member has the option, in lieu of the proportional refund provided herein, to choose to complete the unused portion of the contract

including any renewal periods at the price disclosed on the first page of this Membership Agreement at another location which is owned, controlled,

affiliated with or operated by Seller. Any such modification of this agreement must be made in writing and may only modify the terms of the contract as

they relate to the unavailable or no longer fully operational facilities or services.

4. Repairs, Maintenance, Improvements, & Replacements. Nothing in this agreement shall restrict Seller from:

(a) Performing regular maintenance or making prompt equipment repairs;

(b) Making improvements to the facilities and services

 

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So anyways, about a year ago I was looking for a new gym and this Gold's Gym opened up in town. At the time it seemed like a really great gym. For the first few months things were fine, but then I started noticing the attitude of the employees. A group of them were huddled in a corner of the facility and were talking about a lady across the room who was fairly overweight. They were literally making fun of her, and degrading her behind her back. I found this very unprofessional and decided right then and there that this wasn't the environment I was looking for..

 

The next day I contact their manager and inform them about what had happened, and notified him that I wished to cancel my membership. Initially I was told when I signed up for the membership that I could cancel at anytime with a fee like most agreements have. Needless to say when I talked to him, he informed me that I was unable to cancel my contract until 2011!!! I told him that this was not the case as I was told before I signed the agreement that I would be able to cancel...

 

I am the kind of guy who asks a lot of questions before signing an agreement. I would have never signed it unless I was sure I could get out of it, as which most people would... I am no lawyer and I did read the agreement, and it seemed like what the employee told me was true. That I could cancel at anytime with a written letter and possibly a fee involved.

 

So in December I called their corporate office and really complained after not receiving any results with the branch. I actually talked with one of the owners of the Franchise. He stated that he could freeze my account for 3 months, which I didn't understand why he could do that and not cancel my account. He also stated that in three months if I felt I was still in the same situation we could come to an agreement then.. Words got a little heated and I left it at that for three months...

 

So the three months have passed and they have started to charge my credit card again, I contact them and the are still staying to their guns. They have gone back on their promises to come to an agreement, and have overall just insulted me even more.

 

They want to continue to charge me for an additional year, even though they know that I will never step foot in their facilities again. Which I don't think is right....

 

I have offered to pay them $100 to end my membership and they have refused. With most cellphone companies you can get out of agreements for a fee... Why not this?

 

After reading the agreement several times I know that there is not much recourse unless both parties decided to dissolve this agreement. Or if I move away 25 miles or more. Or get a doctors excuse...

 

I am pretty much screwed here and don't know of any additional recourse I can take. Maybe someone can provide some more insight....

 

Here is the agreement:

 

 

 

Also I got a question about signing documents, dose signing a document by electronic pen constitute a legal binding agreement? To me Pen and Paper should be the only legally binding way one can enforce an agreement like this..

Yes its binding. But verbal agreements are also binding, so if you were misinformed initially then the contract is forfeit.

 

I had a similar run in with one of the local gyms (Cardinal Fitness). After trying to get out of the contract they tried to pull the same deal so I told them to shove it and let me credit card company deal with the dispute. Seems that all these organizations operate like payday loan offices.

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Yes its binding. But verbal agreements are also binding, so if you were misinformed initially then the contract is forfeit.

 

I had a similar run in with one of the local gyms (Cardinal Fitness). After trying to get out of the contract they tried to pull the same deal so I told them to shove it and let me credit card company deal with the dispute. Seems that all these organizations operate like payday loan offices.

 

 

I have heard good things about Cardinal, as they offer no contracts (I thought).

 

Anyways, while verbal agreements are biding, there really isn't away to prove it... Its their word against mine... They can lie about it all they want, but because I signed their agreement there asses are covered...

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Cut up your credit card and get a report it stolen to get a new one. Then they can't charge your card anymore.

 

Then I would be in Default, and they can therefor turn it into collection agencies... I am trying to avoid that...

 

 

I had an issue when I was still attending the gym, where my bank noticed a charge that seemed suspicious. They attempted to call me but I wasen't able to speak with them in time, so they froze my card. Needless to say the gym's automatic charge went threw and they were unable to charge because of that.

 

At that point you think they would call me and tell me that they weren't able to charge my card right?

 

No, they proceeded to charge it an additional 8 times, each time it didn't go threw they put a fee for unsuccessful transaction. They wanted me to pay $250 in fees, because of a security feature that was tripped on my bank account... Normal business will call you or contact you if your payment is declined, they however decided to get rich from their fees and charge it as many times as they wanted... I eventually got them to get rid of the fees, but only after hours and hous on the phone..

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at that point right there I would have canceled and not taken the block off...

 

Well the block was for another charge, that was a big purchases, so the bank tries to call you to verify it, needless to say they couldn't get a hold of me. I thought that them taking away the fees was a good gesture considering it wasn't really my fault, and at the time I was still enjoying the gym..

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Then I would be in Default, and they can therefor turn it into collection agencies... I am trying to avoid that...

 

 

I had an issue when I was still attending the gym, where my bank noticed a charge that seemed suspicious. They attempted to call me but I wasen't able to speak with them in time, so they froze my card. Needless to say the gym's automatic charge went threw and they were unable to charge because of that.

 

At that point you think they would call me and tell me that they weren't able to charge my card right?

 

No, they proceeded to charge it an additional 8 times, each time it didn't go threw they put a fee for unsuccessful transaction. They wanted me to pay $250 in fees, because of a security feature that was tripped on my bank account... Normal business will call you or contact you if your payment is declined, they however decided to get rich from their fees and charge it as many times as they wanted... I eventually got them to get rid of the fees, but only after hours and hous on the phone..

 

I think what he means is report it stolen so you will get a new number and your old number will be deactivated and they won't be able to charge the anymore because they don't know what the new number is. Not to cut up your credit card and refuse to pay the charges and get a new card from a different credit card company.

 

Did you try calling your credit card company and disputing the charge?

 

If you choose to call the gym again try threatening them with a lawsuit which might be a way to get someone listing.

 

Also you quit the GYM (besides for bad finical reasons) because you saw some people making fun of someone else I mean isn't that just life?

 

A good thing to look into next time is something called virtual credit card numbers which is a good way to make sure any vendor can't charge up whatever he wants on your credit card.

Edited by fire_storm

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The only thing I can think of is be as annoying as possible. Go into the office every day and demand to talk to the boss. Threaten to go to the Better Business Bureau and file a complaint... the BBB absolutely will take action, so let them know. Call the head office every day and demand a refund. Reason with them that the time they pay their employees to deal with you WILL cost more than letting you off the contract. Find the name of the guy who you entered the verbal contract with and throw his name around a lot, make everyone there uncomfortable and dread having to talk to you. If they want to be a headache to you, then you have every right to be just as big a headache to them. Make them lose money without even knowing by telling everyone who cares to listen that Golds Gym rots and should be avoided at all costs. Then tell them that you're persuading everyone you know to stay as far away as possible. Eventually they will give you what you want, which is a fair resolution to your very fair complaint. Good luck!

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I think what he means is report it stolen so you will get a new number and your old number will be deactivated and they won't be able to charge the anymore because they don't know what the new number is. Not to cut up your credit card and refuse to pay the charges and get a new card from a different credit card company.

 

Did you try calling your credit card company and disputing the charge?

 

If you choose to call the gym again try threatening them with a lawsuit which might be a way to get someone listing.

 

Also you quit the GYM (besides for bad finical reasons) because you saw some people making fun of someone else I mean isn't that just life?

 

A good thing to look into next time is something called virtual credit card numbers which is a good way to make sure any vendor can't charge up whatever he wants on your credit card.

 

 

That would still put you in default I think, as you are likely required to update the payment information... As for lawsuit, if you look at the agreement I actually waived my rights when I signed it, and that they would rather go threw arbitration instead, which will likely benefit me.

 

It was alot of things that made me want to cancel the membership, the attitude, the issues with them charging fees, it becoming more of a financial burden, etc... I was overall not satisfied of what I was paying for.

 

My bank is sending me the paper work for disputing it, so I have started that process... I am just worried about them sending collections after me. I am a college student, trying to keep my credit in good standing so I am not completely screwed coming out of school...

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That would still put you in default I think, as you are likely required to update the payment information... As for lawsuit, if you look at the agreement I actually waived my rights when I signed it, and that they would rather go threw arbitration instead, which will likely benefit me.

 

It was alot of things that made me want to cancel the membership, the attitude, the issues with them charging fees, it becoming more of a financial burden, etc... I was overall not satisfied of what I was paying for.

 

My bank is sending me the paper work for disputing it, so I have started that process... I am just worried about them sending collections after me. I am a college student, trying to keep my credit in good standing so I am not completely screwed coming out of school...

 

Doesn't your school have a gym?

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