New Hampshire Department of Justice
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Consumer Sourcebook

Preface | User's Guide | Table of Contents | Print Sourcebook Adobe Acrobat Reader Symbol

Extra Note: Health Clubs

Health club members in New Hampshire who prepay their memberships are protected against unfair contract clauses and against losing their money if the club suddenly closes. The law also applies to weight loss clinics and martial arts businesses. Prepaid membership contracts:

  • Can be canceled by the purchaser within three business days by notifying the club in writing (each membership contract must include a statement outlining the right to rescind)
  • Cannot require contracts for longer than one year
  • Cannot include an automatic renewal clause

All health clubs in New Hampshire must be registered with the New Hampshire Attorney General's Office. The registration includes the names and addresses of the owners, officers, stockholders and parent organizations. The registration requires, among other things, a complete listing of the club's employees and their qualifications. Registered health clubs are also required to have means of repaying customers for the unused portion of any prepaid membership contract if the club suddenly closes.

The Consumer Protection Bureau may require a club to post a bond to protect health club members who pay in advance for membership or services in the event the club closes. When signing up for a membership, you should ask to see evidence that the club has either:

  • Posted a bond in compliance with the law
  • That the club has been exempted from the law

If you pay a club for more than one month's membership, and the health club has not posted a bond, then you should be aware that you risk losing your money if the club should close. If you discover that the health club has not registered, please report it in writing to the NH Attorney General's Office Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau in Concord at 603-271-3641or 1-800-468-4454, or online.

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New Hampshire Department of Justice | 33 Capitol Street | Concord, NH | 03301
Telephone: 603-271-3658