Planet Fitness, Hampton, New Hampshire, is facing another allegation of Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) violations—this time, related to a text message offering members a free bottle of water.
On Jan. 23, Jody Steward filed a proposed class action complaint in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Steward claims, without consent, he received an automated text message from Planet Fitness on Oct. 17, 2018, that offered members a free bottle of water if they showed proof of the text message at their local club.
According to the complaint, the Oct. 17 text message stated: "Thank you for being a Planet Fitness member! Show this text at your home gym today and receive a free bottle of water for your workout! Expires 10/17/18."
Steward is seeking a trial by jury, judgment against Planet Fitness, class action certification, declaratory and injunctive relief, an award of $1,500 in damages per text message, and other relief as deemed by the court. If Steward's class action proposal is accepted by the court, the case's total damages could exceed $5 million, according to the complaint.
The complaint states: "Specifically, upon information and belief, Defendant utilized a combination of hardware and software systems to send the text messages at issue in this case. The systems utilized by Defendant have the capacity to store telephone numbers using a random or sequential generator, and to dial such numbers from a list without human intervention. Defendant’s unsolicited text messages caused Plaintiff actual harm, including invasion of his privacy, aggravation, annoyance, intrusion on seclusion, trespass, and conversion. Defendant’s text messages also inconvenienced Plaintiff and caused disruption to his daily life."
Steward has registered with the national do-not-call registry since 2004, according to the complaint.
In January, a federal judge, also in southern Florida, denied Planet Fitness' arbitration request over a proposed class action regarding the company's alleged violations of the TCPA.
Plaintiff Jonnathan Ramos, a Planet Fitness member from 2015 to 2018, is alleging that Planet Fitness' automated text messages caused him actual harm, including invasion of his privacy, aggravation, annoyance, intrusion on seclusion, trespass, conversion, inconvenience and disruption to his daily life. A court date has not been set for Ramos' proposed suit.
For more on the recent rise of TCPA-related lawsuits, click here.