BGH judgment: The gymnasium must reimburse the contributions for the time of confinement

Business BGH judgment

Gym must refund dues during months in lockdown

Anyone who was unable to make it to the gym during confinement is entitled to reimbursement of membership fees

Anyone who was unable to make it to the gym during confinement is entitled to reimbursement of membership fees

Credit: Oliver Berg/dpa

No training, no payment? A man from Lower Saxony recovered the contributions paid during confinement from his gym. But the gymnasium refused. The Federal Court of Justice has now ruled that customers are entitled to a refund.

OIf he was unable to use his gym during the Corona lockdown, he is entitled to the membership fees paid during this period. The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) ruled in a model case from Lower Saxony on Wednesday that a studio must reimburse contributions collected by direct debit to a customer.

“The purpose of a gym contract is regular physical activity,” said Karlsruhe’s top civil judge. With a closure of several weeks, it was impossible to provide this service.

The plaintiff had entered into a two-year contract which began to run in December 2019. After the outbreak of the corona pandemic, the studio had to close from March 16 to June 4, 2020.

read also


Lose weight or build muscle

The operator nevertheless continued to collect the monthly contributions of 29.90 euros. The client had initially unsuccessfully asked his studio for a refund and eventually requested a voucher for the amount. However, the studio only offered him a “training time credit” – which the client declined.

Studios are not allowed to join closing time

Before the BGH, the man was right in the last instance. In the case of a fixed-term gym contract of several months, “the regular and year-round openness and friendliness of the studio is of crucial importance”, decided the judges. During the confinement, this contractual objective could not be achieved.

read also

Portrait of a confident mature man with earphones on the beach

Training, nutrition, psyche

According to the verdict, the studio also does not have the right to add the closing weeks to the duration of the contract, as some trial courts had believed possible. The BGH judges also justify this with the voucher solution that the legislator introduced in the spring of 2020 to prevent mass insolvencies through claims.

The regulations stipulated that organizers and institutions could also reimburse entrance tickets and “user fees” with a voucher. The BGH ruled that a definitive settlement had thus been made. A contract adjustment does not take place additionally.

You can listen to our WELT podcasts here

In order to display the embedded content, your revocable consent to the transmission and processing of personal data is required, as the providers of the embedded content as third-party providers require this consent. [In diesem Zusammenhang können auch Nutzungsprofile (u.a. auf Basis von Cookie-IDs) gebildet und angereichert werden, auch außerhalb des EWR]. By setting the switch to “on” you agree to this (which can be revoked at any time). This also includes your consent to the transfer of certain personal data to third countries, including the United States, in accordance with Article 49 (1) (a) GDPR. You can find more information about it. You can withdraw your consent at any time via the switch and via privacy at the bottom of the page.

“Kick-off Politics” is WELT’s daily news podcast. The most important subject analyzed by the editors of WELT and the dates of the day. Subscribe to the podcast at Spotify, Apple podcast, Amazon Music or directly via the RSS feed.

Leave a Comment