Cancel Gym Membership

(WSVN) - He wanted to get into shape, so he joined a gym and paid for a trainer, but then, he decided he wanted to cancel and get back his money. He was told that wouldn’t happen, so he asked Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser to do the heavy lifting.

It’s January. Time for resolutions. Time to say, “I gotta get in shape.”

Last year, Mike Rodriguez decided he needed to lose a little.

Mike Rodriguez, not a gym guy: “Two-seventy-six, I’m down to 225 so 50 pounds.”

Mike’s key to losing 50 pounds? No strenuous workouts or expensive diets.

Mike Rodriguez: “Intermittent fasting, that was all it was. I would eat the first meal of the day by 11, and I wouldn’t eat anything after 4:30.”

When Mike got to 225, he was satisfied.

Mike Rodriguez: “Pretty good! I mean I felt sexier when I was bigger, though. I’m not going to lie. I owned that belly.”

But one thing did weigh on him.

Mike Rodriguez: “You know, now I look in the mirror, and I’m like, ‘[expletive], you need to work out.'”

Mike joined a gym and paid for a trainer.

Mike Rodriguez: “I signed up for a private trainer for four training sessions for $120.”

Mike only went to the gym once, decided he didn’t want to go anymore and cancelled his gym membership.

Then, he asked for the $120 back he had paid for the trainer.

Mike Rodriguez: “And then she tells me the $120 for the four training sessions I would either have to give to somebody or lose it, which struck me as odd.”

Odd, Mike says, because he never even spoke to a trainer.

Mike Rodriguez: “I never even got evaluated. No one was assigned to me as a trainer.”

Mike wanted the trainer to tone up his body, not trim his bank account.

Mike Rodriguez: “Frustrated, definitely, so I started making phone calls.”

Well, one call was to Help Me Howard to find out if a gym can keep the money for a trainer if you don’t use the trainer.

Howard Finkelstein, 7 News Legal Expert: “It depends on the contract you sign. In Mike’s case, the contract is very specific, and there is a no refunds policy. Also, the training sessions expire after 90 days, so Mike has no legal remedy to get his $120 back.”

Mike signed the electronic contract and did not get a copy, but it said, “All sales are final,” and “Training packages are not refundable.”

But then, Youfit Health Clubs did a wonderful thing. They gave Mike with $120 back writing, “Our company has made a one-time exception for Mr. Rodriguez, and he is very happy with that decision.”

Howard Finkelstein: “Whether it’s an electronic contract or a paper contract, don’t rush. Read it, think about it, and if they want you to sign on the spot, walk away. You can always come back even if they tell you that you cannot because they want your money.”

Youfit was nice enough to give Mike his money back, and he hopes to deep his weight off with his unusual diet.

Mike Rodriguez: “Eating bacon, cake, whatever you want. I hate vegetables, but I’ll probably die at an early age but in a good looking body.”

Now that’s how you diet. You laugh about it. You can you lose weight by laughing, right?

Now, Mike quit the gym after one trip because he said it wasn’t for him, so before you sign a gym contract, ask to work out a couple of times to make sure it’s what you want.

A problem become a weight on your shoulders? Starving for a solution? Lift the phone and call us. Hopefully, we can work out a solution and fatten up your bank account.

CONTACT HELP ME HOWARD:
Email: helpmehoward@wsvn.com
Reporter: Patrick Fraser at pfraser@wsvn.com
Miami-Dade: 305-953-WSVN
Broward: 954-761-WSVN

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