It all started four yrs. ago when I joined Karate America to learn Krav Maga. I ended up quitting 3 mons later because it exacerbated my asthma too much. When you quit, you have to provide a letter from your dr. recommending you to quit and pay a $50 fee. I did both. I sent them a check on Oct. 12, 2004.
After about a week and a half or so, they started whining about not getting the check and asking for their money. So, I figured that they had lost the check in the mail. I called my bank and put a stop payment on the check. I went to the karate america on wells rd and paid with a check card. And I thought that was the end of that.
Four yrs. later... I checked my bank acct. one morning only to find that K.A. had cashed the check I had written 4 years ago. The one that was "supposedly" lost in the mail. I was furious and called the bank because i knew that a check is worthless after a year without cashing it.
My bank was understanding and said that they had probably deposited the check through the ATM machine. Which i thought was pretty sneaky. Also a stop payment is only valid for 180 days. So beware! After a couple of days of talking and trying to resolve the situation with my bank, they told that they can't do anything about it and I'd have to resolve it with Karate America myself. The nightmare begins..
I called K.A. but they failed to pick up the phone so I decided to show up to the Wells Rd. location. They said they can't help so they gave me the headquarters number. I called them and told them my situation and they asked for a copy of the check. I faxed and emailed it to them. Then after I faxed it to them, they never called back. So I called them the next day, no one picks up, so i left a msg. They called back probably an hr. later.
They said, "we can't do anything about this because we don't have any other proof that you paid the cancellation fee. Unless if you have a receipt of some kind, we can't do anything". So I argued that if i had an outstanding bill for four yrs. they would've harassed the hell out of me to make me pay. I would've gotten a delinquency notice also. I asked them to check their records because I knew I paid that Fee.
She replied "oh, we don't keep records of that sort"... I was stunned to learn that a business like them doesn't keep records of each cash transaction that was made with each customer. I knew that that was an outright lie. No business is that idiotic. They kept asking for a receipt and I asked them who keeps a FOUR YEAR OLD receipt?!!
SO I called my bank to see if they have any record of me paying $50 to karate america after Oct. 12, 2004. Sure enough they had the record and faxed it to me immediately. I, then, faxed it to K.A. immediately. I called them again and asked "since I have a document saying I paid you $50, will I get my money back?" all they said was "we will try our best".. in my mind i said "yea, to keep my money."
I kept calling for the next two days. Ms. Kutner is a verrrry busy person I tell ya. So when I talked to, what i assume, was her assistant, I asked about the progression of my situation. She looked at her desk and said that Ms. Kutner or Ms. Terry had the bookkeeping records on their desk. Ohhh sooo now there's a record.
After being stern with them.. well actually yelling at them at how ridiculously long this is taking they finally called back and told me that I will be refunded the fifty dollars. No apologies were made on their part at all. Honestly, I didn't even care for the $50, I just wanted an apology but never got one. The fifty dollars was not refunded until a week later when I called again to ask where my money is.
Even though my situation was resolved, I feel as if they didn't do the best they could to help me. They demonstrated their incompetency and lack of business ethics by doing very little on their part to see if I did pay that fee. If I hadn't called my bank for a proof that I paid, they would'nt have checked their records to see if I did pay.
I felt as if they were trying their darndest to steal from me. They also NEVER apologize for the wrong doings they have clearly done. My advice to those who are with K.A. is to keep all your receipts and records, and read each word on anything you sign, because they're more interested in karate chopping your wallet than in the welfare of their clients.