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The Florida Statutes

The 2018 Florida Statutes

Title XXXIII
REGULATION OF TRADE, COMMERCE, INVESTMENTS, AND SOLICITATIONS
Chapter 501
CONSUMER PROTECTION
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F.S. 501.017
501.017 Health studios; contracts.
(1) Each contract for the sale of future health studio services which is paid for in advance or which the buyer agrees to pay for in future installment payments shall be in writing and shall contain, contractual provisions to the contrary notwithstanding, in immediate proximity to the space reserved in the contract for the signature of the buyer, and in at least 10-point boldfaced type, language substantially equivalent to the following:
(a) A provision for the penalty-free cancellation of the contract within 3 days, exclusive of holidays and weekends, of its making, upon the mailing or delivery of written notice to the health studio, and refund upon such notice of all moneys paid under the contract, except that the health studio may retain an amount computed by dividing the number of complete days in the contract term or, if appropriate, the number of occasions health studio services are to be rendered into the total contract price and multiplying the result by the number of complete days that have passed since the making of the contract or, if appropriate, by the number of occasions that health studio services have been rendered. A refund shall be issued within 30 days after receipt of the notice of cancellation made within the 3-day provision.
(b)1. A provision for the cancellation and refund of the contract if the contracting business location of the health studio goes out of business, or moves its facilities more than 5 driving miles from the business location designated in the contract and fails to provide, within 30 days, a facility of equal quality located within 5 driving miles of the business location designated in the contract at no additional cost to the buyer.
2. A provision that notice of intent to cancel by the buyer shall be given in writing to the health studio. The notice of cancellation from the consumer terminates automatically the consumer’s obligation to any entity to whom the health studio has subrogated or assigned the consumer’s contract. If the health studio wishes to enforce the contract after receipt of the notice, it may request the department to determine the sufficiency of the notice.
3. A provision that if the department determines that a refund is due the buyer, the refund shall be an amount computed by dividing the contract price by the number of weeks in the contract term and multiplying the result by the number of weeks remaining in the contract term. The business location of a health studio may not be deemed out of business when temporarily closed for repair and renovation of the premises:
a. Upon sale, for not more than 14 consecutive days; or
b. During ownership, for not more than 7 consecutive days and not more than two periods of 7 consecutive days in any calendar year.

A refund shall be issued within 30 days after receipt of the notice of cancellation made pursuant to this paragraph.

(c) A provision in the disclosure statement advising the buyer to contact the department for information within 60 days should the health studio go out of business.
(d) A provision for the cancellation of the contract if the buyer dies or becomes physically unable to avail himself or herself of a substantial portion of those services which he or she used from the commencement of the contract until the time of disability, with refund of funds paid or accepted in payment of the contract in an amount computed by dividing the contract price by the number of weeks in the contract term and multiplying the result by the number of weeks remaining in the contract term. The contract may require a buyer or the buyer’s estate seeking relief under this paragraph to provide proof of disability or death. A physical disability sufficient to warrant cancellation of the contract by the buyer is established if the buyer furnishes to the health studio a certification of such disability by a physician licensed under chapter 458, chapter 459, chapter 460, or chapter 461 to the extent the diagnosis or treatment of the disability is within the physician’s scope of practice. A refund shall be issued within 30 days after receipt of the notice of cancellation made pursuant to this paragraph.
(e) A provision that the initial contract will not be for a period in excess of 36 months, and thereafter shall only be renewable annually. A renewal contract may not be executed and the fee therefor paid until 60 days or less before the previous contract expires.
(f) A provision that if the health studio requires a buyer to furnish identification upon entry to the facility and as a condition of using the services of the health studio, the health studio shall provide the buyer with the means of such identification.
(2) Every health studio exempt from the requirements of s. 501.016(1) and (2) shall include in all of its contracts for health studio services, in the same manner as provided in subsection (1) of this section, the following disclosure:

SHOULD YOU (THE BUYER) CHOOSE TO PAY FOR MORE THAN 1 MONTH OF THIS AGREEMENT IN ADVANCE, BE AWARE THAT YOU ARE PAYING FOR FUTURE SERVICES AND MAY BE RISKING LOSS OF YOUR MONEY IN THE EVENT THIS HEALTH STUDIO AND/OR THIS BUSINESS LOCATION CEASES TO OPERATE. THIS HEALTH STUDIO IS NOT REQUIRED BY FLORIDA LAW TO PROVIDE ANY SECURITY, AND THERE MAY NOT BE OTHER PROTECTIONS PROVIDED TO YOU SHOULD YOU CHOOSE TO PAY IN ADVANCE.

(3) Upon entering into a contract for health studio services, the buyer shall be provided with a written contract, which shall include the name, address, and primary place of business of the health studio. Prior to entering into any such contract, the health studio shall also provide the buyer with a current copy of any rules applicable to the buyer’s use of the health studio.
(4) The provisions of this section do not apply to any contracts for health studio services entered into before October 1, 1990, or to the subsequent renewals of such contracts.
(5) No health studio may, orally or in writing, make any representation that a health studio contract for future services is for a lifetime or is a perpetual membership or use any words or combination of words which may tend to give a prospective buyer the impression that a contract or membership entitles the buyer to services or the use of facilities for an indefinite term.
History.s. 7, ch. 90-312; s. 14, ch. 91-201; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 1, ch. 96-149; s. 1156, ch. 97-103; s. 8, ch. 2001-214; s. 19, ch. 2012-67.