September 16, 2003
Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
GENERAL'S OFFICE ACCEPTING COMPLAINTS FROM MEMBERS OF CLOSED CECIL
COUNTY HEALTH CLUB
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced that consumers who were
members of a recently closed Cecil County health club can file refund
claims with the Consumer Protection Division of this office. Hard
Times Fitness Corporation, which was located at One Commercial Plaza,
Elkton, closed in April without advance notice to its members. The
Division may be able to assist consumers in recovering some of their
membership fees and provide information about how to stop the club
from continuing to collect payments set up as automatic debits or
transfers from bank accounts.
Consumers who are entitled to refunds should send a copy of their
membership agreement and proof of payment to: Hard Times Claims,
c/o Consumer Protection Division, 200 St. Paul Place, 16th floor,
Baltimore, MD 21202. Refunds will be paid from a letter of credit
posted by the business.
Consumers who want more information on the closing or instructions
for filing a complaint and discontinuing debit payments can call
410-576-6350, or send an e-mail with name, address and telephone
number to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Maryland's Health Club law requires health clubs, self-defense schools
and weight loss centers to register with the Division. Clubs like
Hard Times, which collect more than three months' payment in advance
or an initiation fee of more than $200, must also provide the Division
with a bond or letter of credit to protect consumers' advance payments.