2009 California Civil Code - Section 1694.5-1694.9 :: Chapter 2.2. Weight Loss Contracts

CIVIL CODE
SECTION 1694.5-1694.9

1694.5.  (a) As used in this chapter, a weight loss contract is a
contract with any weight loss program or center that offers any of
the following:
   (1) Instruction, counseling, supervision, or assistance in weight
reduction, body shaping, diet, and eating habits, by persons who are
not licensed health care professionals.
   (2) Use of facilities of a weight loss center for any of the
purposes specified in paragraph (1).
   (3) Membership in any group, club, association, or organization
formed for any of the purposes specified in paragraph (1).
   (4) Prepackaged, or premeasured "diet foods" provided by the
weight loss program or center.
   (b) This chapter does not apply to any contract for health studio
services as defined in Section 1812.81.

1694.6.  (a) In addition to any other right to revoke an offer, the
buyer has the right to cancel a weight loss contract or offer until
midnight of the third business day after the day on which the buyer
signs an agreement or offer to purchase those services.
   (b) Cancellation occurs when the buyer gives written notice of
cancellation by mail, telegram, or delivery to the seller at the
address specified in the agreement or offer.
   (c) Notice of cancellation, if given by mail, is effective when
deposited in the mail properly addressed with postage prepaid.
   (d) Notice of cancellation given by the buyer need not take the
particular form as provided in the contract or offer to purchase and,
however expressed, is effective if it indicates the intention of the
buyer not to be bound by the weight loss contract.
   (e) All moneys paid pursuant to any weight loss contract shall be
refunded within 10 days of receipt of the notice of cancellation.
   (f) The buyer may notify the weight loss program of his or her
intent to cancel the contract within the three-day period specified
in this section and stop the processing of a credit card voucher or
check by telephone notification to the weight loss program. However,
this does not negate the obligation of the buyer to cancel the
contract by mail, telegram, or delivery as required pursuant to this
section.

1694.7.  (a) A weight loss contract shall be in writing. A copy of
the contract shall be provided to the buyer at the time he or she
signs the contract.
   (b) Every weight loss contract shall contain on its face, and in
close proximity to the space reserved for the signature of the buyer,
a conspicuous statement in a size equal to at least 10-point
boldface type, as follows:

   "You, the buyer, may cancel this agreement, without any penalty or
obligation, at any time prior to midnight of the original contract
seller's third business day following the date of this contract,
excluding Sundays and holidays. To cancel this agreement, mail or
deliver a signed and dated notice, or send a telegram which states
that you, the buyer, are canceling this agreement, or words of
similar effect. This notice shall be sent to:
________________________
(Name of the business that
sold you the contract)
_______________________."
(Address of the business that
sold you the contract)

   (c) The weight loss contract shall contain on the first page, in a
type size no smaller than that generally used in the body of the
document, the name and address of the weight loss program operator to
which the notice of cancellation is to be mailed; and the date the
buyer signed the contract.
   (d) No weight loss contract shall require payments or financing by
the buyer over a period in excess of two years from the date the
contract is entered into, nor shall the term of any such contract be
measured by the life of the buyer. The services to be rendered to the
buyer under the contract shall not extend for more than three years
after the date the contract is entered into.
   (e) If a weight loss contract is not in compliance with this
chapter, the buyer may, at any time, cancel the contract.

1694.8.  Every weight loss contract shall contain language providing
that:
   (a) If by reason of death or disability the buyer is unable to
receive all services for which the buyer has contracted, the buyer
and the buyer's estate may elect to be relieved of the obligation to
make payments for services other than those received before death or
the onset of disability, except as provided in paragraph (3).
   (1) If the buyer has prepaid any amount for services, so much of
the amount prepaid that is allocable to services that the buyer has
not received shall be promptly refunded to the buyer or his or her
representative.
   (2) "Disability" means a condition which precludes the buyer from
physically using the services specified in the contract during the
term of disability and the condition is verified in writing by a
physician designated and remunerated by the buyer. The written
verification of the physician shall be presented to the seller.
   (3) If the physician determines that the duration of the
disability will be less than six months, the seller may extend the
term of the contract for a period of six months at no additional
charge to the buyer in lieu of cancellation.
   (b) If the buyer relocates his or her primary residence further
than 50 miles from the weight loss center and is unable to transfer
the contract to a comparable facility, the buyer may elect to be
relieved of the obligation to make payment for services other than
those received prior to that relocation, and if the buyer has prepaid
any amount for weight loss services, so much of the amount prepaid
that is allocable to services that the buyer has not received shall
be promptly refunded to the buyer. A buyer who elects to be relieved
of further obligation pursuant to this subdivision may be charged a
predetermined fee not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100) or, if
more than half the life of the contract has expired, a predetermined
fee not to exceed fifty dollars ($50).

1694.9.  (a) Any contract for weight loss services which does not
comply with this chapter is void and unenforceable.
   (b) Any contract for weight loss services entered into under
willful and fraudulent or misleading information or advertisements of
the seller is void and unenforceable.
   (c) Any buyer injured by a violation of this chapter may bring an
action for the recovery of damages in a court of competent
jurisdiction. Judgment may be entered for three times the amount at
which the actual damages are assessed if the violation is willful.
Reasonable attorney fees may be awarded to the prevailing party.
   (d) Notwithstanding the provisions of any contract to the
contrary, whenever the contract price is payable in installments and
the buyer is relieved from making further payments or entitled to a
refund under this chapter, the buyer shall be entitled to receive a
refund or refund credit of that portion of the cash price as is
allocable to the services not actually received by the buyer. The
refund of any finance charge shall be computed according to the "sum
of the balance method," also known as the "Rule of 78."
   (e) Any waiver by the buyer of this chapter is void and
unenforceable.


Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. California may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.