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For Immediate Release
April 30, 2007

Media Contact:
Raquel Guillory, 410-576-6357
rguillory@oag.state.md.us

Attorney General’s Office Files Charges Against Six Health Clubs

Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler announced today that his Consumer Protection Division has filed administrative charges against six health clubs for failing to renew their registration with the Division under Maryland’s Health Club law. The businesses are Dawson Enterprises, Inc. of Columbia (Awesome Tae Kwon Do Academy), Hong Corporation of Gaithersburg (Potentials Unlimited Hypnosis Center), M & M Fitness White Marsh of Baltimore (Curves - White Marsh), Montgomery Fitness for Life, Inc. of Gaithersburg (Curves - Gaithersburg), Southwind Health II, LLC of Potomac (Curves - Potomac), and T.L. Edwards, LLC of Silver Spring (Curves - Colesville/White Oak). Although not currently registered with the Division, each business has sold health club services for the 2006-2007 registration period.

Under Maryland law, health clubs, self-defense schools, and weight loss centers are required to register prior to selling health club services. The law also requires facilities to post a bond or other security with the Division if they collect more than three months of payment in advance from members or charge an initiation fee of more than $200.00.

“These types of businesses must comply with the requirements of registering with my office in order to do business in Maryland,” said Attorney General Gansler. “Enforcement of the registration and bonding requirements helps to protect consumers’ financial health in the event that the club should go out of business.”

The charges seek an order requiring the businesses to cease and desist from selling health club services in Maryland unless they have complied with the registration requirement and to pay civil penalties, and costs.

Gansler urges consumers to visit the Attorney General’s website at www.oag.state.md.us/Heathclub/consumer.htm or call the Consumer Protection Division at 410-576-6350 before they join a health club, weight loss center or self-defense school to see if it is properly registered and bonded. The website also contains tips for consumers considering joining health clubs, weight loss centers or karate schools.

A public hearing on charges will be held at the Office of Administrative Hearings, 11101 Gilroy Road, in Hunt Valley, on June 5, 2007, at 10:00 a.m.


 

   

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