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Help! Unable to cancel Golds Gym Membership!

SlikNik 156 February 4, 2013 at 10:17 AM
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Here is a post that I just put on their FB page. I am out of contract, paid in full, and no longer in the area. Pulling my hair out on this one.

I have been attempting to cancel my membership for the last 6 months (since I moved). I was told that I needed to call back on 01/23/13 to cancel. When I did, I was advised that I needed to write a HAND WRITTEN letter of intent to cancel and mail it to your post office box. I have done this, made copies, and sent it certified. This was on 01/25/13. I was told that the box is checked every Thursday and assured that my account would be cancelled. As of today, the PO Box has STILL not been checked and USPS is advising me that the letter will be returned to me if not retrieved by this week. Contacting the gym is of no help, I am just told that "we will probably get it this week". Please let me know what is needed to cancel my account from this point.

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#2
Quote from SlikNik View Post :
Here is a post that I just put on their FB page. I am out of contract, paid in full, and no longer in the area. Pulling my hair out on this one.

I have been attempting to cancel my membership for the last 6 months (since I moved). I was told that I needed to call back on 01/23/13 to cancel. When I did, I was advised that I needed to write a HAND WRITTEN letter of intent to cancel and mail it to your post office box. I have done this, made copies, and sent it certified. This was on 01/25/13. I was told that the box is checked every Thursday and assured that my account would be cancelled. As of today, the PO Box has STILL not been checked and USPS is advising me that the letter will be returned to me if not retrieved by this week. Contacting the gym is of no help, I am just told that "we will probably get it this week". Please let me know what is needed to cancel my account from this point.
i never had a problem canceling a membership in person. I'm assuming there no other gold's gym near you?
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#3
Contact the bank / credit card company through which the recurring billing is set up. If you stop paying, they'll stop your membership in a hurry.
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SlickAddict
156 Reputation
Original Poster
#4
The cancellation requirements of Golds Gym Oxnard, CA is that you MUST hand write and mail in a letter to their PO Box (That they never check).
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SlickAddict
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#5
Quote from SlikNik View Post :
The cancellation requirements of Golds Gym Oxnard, CA is that you MUST hand write and mail in a letter to their PO Box (That they never check).
If a payment is declined, they will send the account to collections. While that may EVENTUALLY get cleared up, I refuse to have my credit hit from this drama.
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#6
Quote from SlikNik View Post :
If a payment is declined, they will send the account to collections. While that may EVENTUALLY get cleared up, I refuse to have my credit hit from this drama.
Sounds like you've answered your own question.

I personally would change the CC or instruct them to not auth the merchant anymore. You have already upheld your end of the bargain by simply mailing a letter.
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#7
Quote from SlikNik View Post :
The cancellation requirements of Golds Gym Oxnard, CA is that you MUST hand write and mail in a letter to their PO Box (That they never check).
I was part of NYSC and they say on their terms & conditions that there must be a hand written notification of cancellation, however, i just went up to the kiosk where they signed me up and asked to cancel and they handled it for me... maybe i was lucky.
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#8
I've never had anything like this go to collections. If you stop the payment, they will stop the membership. I've had to do this before with shady companies. Since you have proof that you tried to cancel with your certified letter, chargeback the payments from you cc from that date forward and tell the cc company to decline any future payments to them.
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#9
If the letter gets returned keep it unopened in case of further problems.
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SlickAddict
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Original Poster
#10
Reading over information regarding this gym, apparently this is what happens on a VERY regular basis. According to tons and tons of reviews, they DO send people to collections for charge backs. I wish I would have taken my own advice and checked out the company first.

I have attempted to cancel in person, they flat out refuse. I have attempted to contact the GM and owner by phone and email multiple times to no avail. I am just banging my head against the desk trying to get this taken care of. Many of the reviews are about deployed service members, relocated families, and even deceased people continually charged for accounts after cancellation requests.
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#11
Opps...I see that you tried to cancel in person and they told you they couldn't.
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#12
I would just send a certified letter to corporate here:

Gold's Gym International, Inc.
Company Information
125 E. John Carpenter Fwy, Ste. 1300
Irving, TX, 75062 United States
(214) 574-4653
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Sneaky..sneaky..sneaky..
286 Reputation
#13
Throw a brick through the window with a cancellation note on it every night until they cancel it?
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#14
Quote from SlikNik View Post :
If a payment is declined, they will send the account to collections. While that may EVENTUALLY get cleared up, I refuse to have my credit hit from this drama.
Do you have this required procedure in writing? If so, and if you've fulfilled it and you have proof (signed receipt from USPS showing it was delivered and received), then you've done what you were supposed to do.

If they refuse to comply, then your next is to step is to file a complaint with your state's attorney general [ca.gov]. Gold's Gym has had plenty of complaints against them with your state's attorney's general and has already been forced to comply with the law regarding contract disputes. They don't want a piece of the attorney general. I can all but guarantee this will solve your problem in a hurry.

Your example is a sad and frustrating problem that happens all too often with contract gyms where they continue to draft someone's checking account after they've tried to cancel their membership.

Moving forward, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER sign a contract with a gym. Gyms that require contracts are not gyms - they are contract houses. They often sign up members, then sell their paper to a finance company for pennies on the dollar. The finance company, then, becomes the company that is actually doing the billing/drafting. The gyms don't care one bit if you ever work out. Why should they care about you? You're bound by law, now, to pay them for the remainder of the contract. As soon as you sign your name to the contract, they know they don't have any competition for the remainder of that contract. So, the free market incentive to serve you as a customer in order to earn your business disappears. As a matter of fact, they'd rather you not work out because if every person that had a contract with them worked out, there wouldn't be any room for anyone to move in the gym.

Also, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER let any company automatically draft your checking account. Instead, pay either by using your credit union's online bill pay service or by cash or by credit card. But, never give a company access to your checking account.

Instead, only workout at a gym where you can pay month-to-month. These gyms actually care about serving you as a customer because they know that if they don't, you'll quit coming and quit paying. They don't handcuff you to a contract to get your business, they have to actually earn your business each and every month.
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#15
I would probably put in a complaint to the BBB and the attorney general, and send more certified letters.

I would also send weekly certified letters until cancelled. I read that it takes 2 months after you send the letter, has it been 2 months yet?
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