In late November 2008 I signed up at the Lethbridge LA Weight Loss Center. I paid for 81 weeks of service at $13 per week. . 23 weeks for weight loss, 6 weeks for stabilization and 52 weeks of maintenance. Total . .$ 1105.65 Lots of money!
I also bought a substantial number of boxes LA Lites. .
Your diet plan is based on eating 2 bars per day so two boxes of 7 bars each are required each week. Regular price is $41.98 per week plus GST but you are told right away that you save if you buy the boxes in bulk . . the more you buy, the less you pay per box. I purchased 80 boxes to get the best deal and paid another huge bill of $1264.37
I was apprehensive about paying so much up front because I have a difficult time losing weight and was not at all sure the program would work for me. I told the young lady who was signing me up of my particular weight loss issues and was assured they could help me.
And, I read the section of the service agreement entitled CONSUMER'S RIGHT TO CANCEL - which reads . . ."If you cancel your Program for any reason within the first three (3) days of the Program, you will be refunded the Program Cost, minus $199 (plus GST)Set-up Fee. After the Initial three (3) day period, we may retain the portion of the total contract price representing the services used and reimbursement for our expenses, plus the cost of any products purchased and removed from the centre."
Nowhere in that section do they put terms and conditions on the individuals right to cancel and I believed (as I am sure I was intended to believe) that I would get a refund if I should choose to cancel.
As suspected, I have lost very little weight on the program. My counsellors' repsonses to my distress about not losing more or faster is to make me feel worse by saying that I am not following the program correctly and admonishing me to follow the program exactly as written. Several times I actually gained weight when following the program exactly. At first I was advised to do things like drink more water, add lemon juice to the water. However, as time has progressed I have been feeling pressured to purchase another of their fantasitic products. e.g.Their special vitamins cost which cost almost $80.00 for a bottle of 120 tablets and you are to take 4 per day . . a month's supply.
I have begun to dread going to weigh in and have come away from the center in tears more than once.
Oh yes, my 23 weight loss weeks are nearly up and I am no where near my goal weight. Now, as I understand it, I cannot continue the program and use my stabilization weeks and maintenance weeks to help me lose additional weight. If I want to lose more weight I have to pay for more weight loss weeks after the original ones are completed and THEN use the stabilization and weight maintenace weeks.
Yesterday I wrote the Lethbridge Center; Weight Loss Alberta Corp which is based in Calgary and appears to be operating the Lethbridge Center and even sent an e-mail to what is supposed to be the regional home office for LA Weight Loss. I notified them of my intention to cancel myself out of their program and requested a refund of funds for my unused weeks (61) and my unused LA Lites (57 boxes). By my calculations they owe me over $1700 . . or around $1500 if they deduct the 199.00 set up fee as referred to in their Consumer's Right to Cancel section in the service agreement.
I had a phone call today from a lady by the name of Martina. She was calling from the Calgary office to tell me that I do not qualify for a refund ! ! ! !
I am welcome to go to the center and get my 57 boxes of LA Lites but I will get no cash back for them and I get nothing back for the unused weeks of service because THEY are still there and willing to provide me with any more weeks of service I might want . . including the extra weeks of weight loss I will have to buy soon if I want to continue losing any weight with them.
There is nothing of these terms indicated in the Right to Cancel section of the service agreement. How can they just invoke them after the fact ? ? ?
In short, they have a good chunk of my money and they have no intention of giving any of it back.
How can they be allowed to conduct business in such a manner ? ?
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