Paige* signed up for a one-year contract with a gym near her home. Due to an unforeseen move, she decided to cancel her membership because her new place was too far from the gym. Paige was within the first 10 days of her contract, so she had the right to cancel. “She [the owner of the gym] told me that once I signed up, that was it. She said I wasn’t going to get my money back,” says Paige. “It was really frustrating.” After multiple emails back and forth, the owner agreed to partially refund Paige for the membership. The owner claimed she had applied the refund to Paige’s credit card, but nothing was showing up. “At this point, the gym had stopped returning my emails and I wasn’t sure who I could turn to. I started doing some research and that’s when I contacted Consumer Protection BC,” said Paige. “[The investigator] was wonderful. She told me to leave it with her and validated that I was well within my rights to get my money back,” says Paige. An investigator from Consumer Protection BC spoke to the owner of the gym and she eventually agreed to refund Paige the total amount she paid for her membership. Paige hopes that others who are stuck in a similar situation don’t lose hope and know Consumer Protection BC can help. “The situation really restored my faith. I’ve told a lot of people about what happened – it’s important to know that there’s someone there to back you up when you’re stuck,” says Paige. “It’s a lesson learned.” *Names changed to protect the privacy of the individuals involved.
Curious about your rights when it comes to gym memberships?
Do you have a membership to a gym or yoga studio? Are you signed up for dance lessons, personal training or self-defense classes? These types of contracts are ongoing and physical in nature and they’re known as continuing services contracts. By law, you have certain cancellation rights. Find out more.
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