A man has filed a class action lawsuit against LA Fitness and its parent company Fitness International LLC for allegedly misrepresenting one-month membership purchases.
On Tuesday, Beau Briones and his lawyers filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Briones alleges that representatives of LA Fitness pressure people to sign agreements for yearlong memberships by "misleading consumers into believing that they were only obtaining and obligated to pay for one month membership." (Read the lawsuit at the end of the article.)
Briones alleges that when his yearlong membership expired in November 2014, a sales representative with LA Fitness persuaded him to buy one more month of membership at the same monthly price of $140. That membership was paid under Briones prior, expired membership, according to the lawsuit. Briones signed an agreement on an electronic device, allegedly only being shown the signature line, not the whole document he was signing. Briones states in the lawsuit that he never saw a written copy of what he was signing.
The suit states the Briones never authorized withdrawal of the $140 from his bank account and instead came in the next day to pay for the extra month in cash. LA Fitness proceeded to automatically deduct from Briones' bank account $110 every other week from November 2014 to March 2015, according to the suit. When Briones protested the withdrawal with LA Fitness, he was told that he had signed a 52-week agreement for $2,860 that authorized the club company to withdraw $110 from his account every two weeks, the suit alleges.
According to the lawsuit, "When Defendants advertised the availability of the extra month membership, Defendants had no intent to sell Plaintiff such a membership, but always intended to sell Plaintiff a 52 week membership at a higher price than was quoted to Plaintiff."
The lawsuit also names Fitness & Sports Clubs LLC and LAF Canada Co., both of which are affiliated with Fitness International LLC.
The seven complaints in the lawsuit are:
- Violation of California False Advertising Act
- Violation of Unfair Business Practices Act
- Violation of Consumer Legal Remedies Act
- Violation of Electronic Funds Transfer Act
- Violation of Health Studio Services Contract Act
- The Tort of Conversion of Personal Property
- Violation of Financial Elder Abuse Act
The lawsuit is requesting a jury trial.
LA Fitness has not responded to a request for comment.