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Thinking of joining a gym for the new year?

Queenslanders looking to kickstart a healthier 2020 by taking out a new gym membership are being reminded of their rights under Australian Consumer Law. Acting Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Dr Anthony Lynham has sent out a reminder that the fitness industry is regulated in Queensland, and gyms and other fitness suppliers must meet certain legal requirements. Here are some tips from the Queensland Government:

  • Give some thought to what you want out of a gym membership and do your research to see what’s on offer. Before you sign up, you’re allowed to inspect the facilities.
  • Be wary of advertising that you think may be misleading – gyms may not make false or misleading claims, including unrealistic weight loss goals.
  • Once you have selected a gym, both parties must sign an agreement that sets out your rights and responsibilities, as well as those of the gym or fitness club. The contract can be fixed term or ongoing. All contracts also have a 48-hour cooling off period to provide peace of mind for those who may have second thoughts. The contract should detail all the applicable fees you have to pay, including ongoing membership costs and any one-off administrative charges, and clearly define what your rights are for ending the agreement.
  • You can end the agreement any time in writing but be aware you may have to pay a cancellation fee. The details of this fee must be set out in the agreement you sign.

For more information on joining a gym, including the National Fitness Industry Code of Practice, or to make a complaint, visit www.qld.gov.au/fairtrading.

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