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Thread: Feeling a bit low

  1. #1
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    Hi guys

    Just looking for a bit sympathy. Just found out that I'm going to get sued by one of the big diet companies. I used to run diet and exercise classes for one of their franchisees. Recently she decided to leave suddenly and instead of closing down the classes all together I decided to carry on running my classes. I'm not really making any money but the ladies are lovely and I would miss seeing them all.

    Recently this company decided to send a mystery customer to my class. I gave out a diet to this person which was left over from my old classes. I have a couple left and I thought it would be ok to give them out as I think that the diet itself is great and it would be a shame just to chuck them in the bin. In this class I also encouraged the women, as I do most classes, to sign up for the monthly magazine and look at the website for this company as I think it is very good.

    This mystery customer wrote a report about me and basically the big boys are going to sue me for giving out their diet. I genuinely didn't realise that I couldn't do this and I haven't made claim to this diet and I don't claim in any way that I am working for this company. I do mention other diet companies as well.

    But there you go. The problem is my friend who was the franchisee has it in her contract that she can not have anything to do with diet and fitness for 12 months. I think a mystery customer was sent out to make sure that she wasn't involved. They are so desperate to catch her out so that they can sue her for breach of contract. The sad thing is that she is not involved with the classes in anyway. I happended to mention her name on the night of the mystery shopper but it was to do with the ball that I am organising for Diabetes UK and the hospice my neice is in. That was included in the report so it's obvious that they are trying to link her to the business. I've never had a contract with them so they can't get me in any other way.



    They have sent her the report and letter to say that they are suing me but I'm still waiting for mine. Needless to say I've been feeling awful all weekend. I can't sleep, I can't eat and I keep think of how much this is going to cost for a stupid innocent mistake.

    It kind of takes a shine off my disney trip, especially as some of our savings are going to have to go on legal fees.

    Sorry guys just needed somewhere to get this off my chest.

    Sam x


  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam, post: 223064
    Hi guys

    Just looking for a bit sympathy. Just found out that I'm going to get sued by one of the big diet companies. I used to run diet and exercise classes for one of their franchisees. Recently she decided to leave suddenly and instead of closing down the classes all together I decided to carry on running my classes. I'm not really making any money but the ladies are lovely and I would miss seeing them all.

    Recently this company decided to send a mystery customer to my class. I gave out a diet to this person which was left over from my old classes. I have a couple left and I thought it would be ok to give them out as I think that the diet itself is great and it would be a shame just to chuck them in the bin. In this class I also encouraged the women, as I do most classes, to sign up for the monthly magazine and look at the website for this company as I think it is very good.

    This mystery customer wrote a report about me and basically the big boys are going to sue me for giving out their diet. I genuinely didn't realise that I couldn't do this and I haven't made claim to this diet and I don't claim in any way that I am working for this company. I do mention other diet companies as well.

    But there you go. The problem is my friend who was the franchisee has it in her contract that she can not have anything to do with diet and fitness for 12 months. I think a mystery customer was sent out to make sure that she wasn't involved. They are so desperate to catch her out so that they can sue her for breach of contract. The sad thing is that she is not involved with the classes in anyway. I happended to mention her name on the night of the mystery shopper but it was to do with the ball that I am organising for Diabetes UK and the hospice my neice is in. That was included in the report so it's obvious that they are trying to link her to the business. I've never had a contract with them so they can't get me in any other way.



    They have sent her the report and letter to say that they are suing me but I'm still waiting for mine. Needless to say I've been feeling awful all weekend. I can't sleep, I can't eat and I keep think of how much this is going to cost for a stupid innocent mistake.

    It kind of takes a shine off my disney trip, especially as some of our savings are going to have to go on legal fees.

    Sorry guys just needed somewhere to get this off my chest.

    Oh no :-(

    Whatever you do, do not apologise as it will be admitting liability, the best thing you could do is to record everything, collect all the paperwork to back you up.

    Do you have professional indemnity insurance?




  3. #3
    Administrator keith's Avatar
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    Ach I'm so sorry for you :( there's nothing worse than stress and the anxiety of waiting and worrying like that.

    tbh, from a distance without knowing all the facts, your friend isn't in breach of contract since she wasnt involved. You just mentioning a name doesn't involve them any more than if you'd mentioned my name, I'd be involved. It's just she's the "low hanging fruit" the easy one to go for because they had a contract with her.

    So they may not try for you at all. It would be more normal to send you out a cease and desist letter threatening consequences if you use their materials again rather than going all out for you straight off.

    If they do try it well they're going to have to try and prove how much money they've lost because of you doing it which will be next to none. So chances are the benefit will be negligible.

    See what happens but I would try hard not to get mega stressed at the moment. The UK isn't a country where they'd sue for millions and get it. My best guess on just what you've said is that they'll demand you stop and sign to say you've stopped. If they went further then they'll be pushed into settling out of court through arbitration if it even gets that far.

    I really doubt it'll be anywhere near as bad as you're thinking
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  4. #4
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    Aw Sam, im sorry - sounds like a huge worry for you, ive nothing to add really except i hope it all gets sorted out very soon so you can stop worrying



  5. #5
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    I don't really know anything about the legalities but it sounds ridiculous you are being implicated in this way
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  6. #6
    Senior Member mumof2's Avatar
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    oh no

    i don't have a clue either but Keith sounds like he knows what he's talking about!




  7. #7
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    Thanks guys.

    I feel a bit better. Until I get the letter I can't really do anything, it's a bit like waiting for the axe to fall. Like my husband says they're a big company who are just bullying a little business. I only run 5 classes it's not exactly a big threat to them.

    However, I will make sure that I tell enough people of how low they are and how they treat you after you end your franchise with them. Nobody would want a franchise with them if they new the hassle they will get afterwards. It's not only the mystery shoppers, it's all the dodgy 'enquiries' my friend gets and the fact that she has some credit owed to her and they are messing her about giving it to her. At one time she was golden girl but now they are treating her like a criminal.

    Once again thanks for the support it has helped getting it off my chest and I am feeling a little more positive.

    I'll keep you all up dated.

    xxx
    Sam x


  8. #8
    Senior Member mumof2's Avatar
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    yes do let us know how you get on, and you're always welcome to rant here you know!




  9. #9
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    So sorry you are having to go through this Sam. I sincerely hope everything works out for you and you've been worrying for nothing

  10. #10
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    Well I can't help much but have one of these on me mate

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