TYLER, TX -- 24 Hour Fitness and its parent company, Forstmann, Little and Co., have been sued by a Texas man who alleges the club refused to honor his lifetime membership while he was an active-duty member of the U.S. Navy.
The case, Shaub v. 24 Hour Fitness Worldwide Inc., was first reported in the Southeast Texas Record. Brad Shaub filed the lawsuit on Nov. 29 in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division.
According to the lawsuit, Shaub purchased a 24 Hour lifetime membership in 1997 at a 24 Hour in Collin County, TX. While stationed in Hawaii, Shaub says he tried to enter a 24 Hour club but was denied access unless he signed an upgrade agreement that required an additional $10 monthly charge, which Shaub signed.
After being honorably discharged from the U.S. Navy, Shaub says that in April 2009, he signed a “special privilege agreement,” which the San Ramon, CA-based company required lifetime members to sign, to secure access to 24 Hour clubs.
The suit details that beginning in the early 2000s, 24 Hour began to sub-categorize clubs to “express,” “sport” and “super sport” after lifetime memberships had been sold. New sub-categories were created again after 2006, prompting 24 Hour to create the special privilege agreement for lifetime members, according to the lawsuit.
Shaub accuses 24 Hour of a breach of contract, fraudulent misrepresentation and inducement claims, negligent misrepresentation claims and that 24 Hour violated the Deceptive Trade Practices Act set forth in the Texas Business and Commerce Code. Shaub is seeking damages based on the financial harm associated with the upgrade agreement and special privilege agreement requirements set by 24 Hour.
In a statement, 24 Hour says it does not comment on pending litigation.
“Our focus remains on our commitment to making fitness accessible and affordable to people of all ages and fitness levels,” 24 Hour said.
24 Hour has been sued in the past by members who claimed they had to upgrade their all-club memberships and pay higher monthly dues to use a rebranded tier of club.