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  • FIRST POST
    • Hoverbuddy
    • By Hoverbuddy 9th May 18, 4:05 PM
    • 2Posts
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    Hoverbuddy
    Direct Debit upon lapsed membership
    • #1
    • 9th May 18, 4:05 PM
    Direct Debit upon lapsed membership 9th May 18 at 4:05 PM
    I have a variation on the "Gym took my money" theme.

    The gym I joined had two separate payment sets - the first was 40 for annual membership, which allowed you to (secondly) either pay each time you went, or to set up a direct debit in lieu of ad hoc attendance payments.

    I joined and then set up a direct debit. After 1 year I was sent a letter saying my membership was about to lapse and if I didn't want to renew I should ignore the letter. I did not wish to renew so did not respond. You can guess the next bit. Two years later I discovered a direct debit (which in all fairness I had thought was for my wife's contact lenses) was actually continuing to be withdrawn by the gym, a total of over 650 over two years.

    I believe my contract was defined by the membership and the payment method was a discount scheme. As I did not renew the membership I think the contract expired, and as there was no communication from the gym at all following that membership expiration I think I have received no "service" they could claim the payments were for.

    Their literature states you MUST be a member to pay by direct debit - though they now claim this means to set it up and that this does not imply you must continue to be a member (!)

    They claim they have done nothing wrong, but they made no effort to contact me even though they very quickly identified that the last date I used the gym (swiped in) was 7 months before the renewal date two years ago.

    I'm thinking there may be other cases where there is a separate membership and discount scheme for members.

    Also - this became apparent because I want to re-join the gym and thought I wasn't a member...so be assured I have good intentions on the gym front!
    I have now joined another gym!

    Does anyone think I have a right of redress to recover these payments drawn by them under the Direct Debit mandate. I think I may have a case as in order to use the gym you HAD to have an annual membership and this was NOT covered by the direct debit.
    Any thoughts hive mind?
Page 1
    • unholyangel
    • By unholyangel 9th May 18, 6:41 PM
    • 12,783 Posts
    • 10,103 Thanks
    unholyangel
    • #2
    • 9th May 18, 6:41 PM
    • #2
    • 9th May 18, 6:41 PM
    It might just be me, but I couldn't work out any of the necessary info from your post.

    I'm also a bit surprised that they'd cancel if you didn't contact them - usually its the other way around so the business can receive the advantage of people who forget to cancel. However, the letter is less important than what T&C's you agreed to at the time of entering the contract. What did those T&C's say with regard to cancellation and what would happen at the end of the contract period?
    Money doesn't solve poverty.....it creates it.
    • Ectophile
    • By Ectophile 9th May 18, 8:23 PM
    • 3,290 Posts
    • 2,118 Thanks
    Ectophile
    • #3
    • 9th May 18, 8:23 PM
    • #3
    • 9th May 18, 8:23 PM
    If you want to claim under the Direct Debit Guarantee, you need to talk to your bank. It's their job to refund incorrect direct debits.
    If it sticks, force it.
    If it breaks, well it wasn't working right anyway.
    • Hoverbuddy
    • By Hoverbuddy 10th May 18, 2:23 PM
    • 2 Posts
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    Hoverbuddy
    • #4
    • 10th May 18, 2:23 PM
    Clarification
    • #4
    • 10th May 18, 2:23 PM
    They kept taking money after I didn't re-join - exactly as you say to make money from forgotten DD's. My question is do I have any mileage in recovering those payments in error on the basis that the membership contract had expired?
    • unholyangel
    • By unholyangel 10th May 18, 3:55 PM
    • 12,783 Posts
    • 10,103 Thanks
    unholyangel
    • #5
    • 10th May 18, 3:55 PM
    • #5
    • 10th May 18, 3:55 PM
    They kept taking money after I didn't re-join - exactly as you say to make money from forgotten DD's. My question is do I have any mileage in recovering those payments in error on the basis that the membership contract had expired?
    Originally posted by Hoverbuddy
    Again, what were the T&C's that you agreed to at the time of entering into the contract? I'll add a sidenote that there are certain things their terms must or should not do but starting point is always the terms you agreed to.

    The reason I ask is this: if your contract states (for example only) you need to give written notice and you have failed to do this, they have a very strong case for keeping the money. On the other hand if the T&C's state that your membership will end unless you agree in writing to a new term, then they'd need to show something in writing from you to prove they had a claim to the money.
    Money doesn't solve poverty.....it creates it.
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