I believe tkf has already been sued. I remember reading the court transcripts a few years ago.
Iíll see if I can dig them up.
ugh. Real law is not so exciting. Perhaps the cast of law and order could condense this into an hour? :))
Yeah I couldn't even tell what the case was about.
This mostly seems to be about "Grand Master Simon" misrepresenting his supposed Shaolin Monk lineage, which is no surprise. It's pretty interesting that someone actually took him to court over this, but does anyone know how it turned out and what the effects were?
Thanks to you guys I'm also in the process of seeking professional advice about getting my money back. The more people that actually try to go after them, the worse their reputation will get and less students will end up in situations like mine.
Unicron, it's really encouraging to me that you managed to get your money back. I really want to hear how you did it, so please post as soon as you're able - or if you'd rather, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sorry, weekend of excess drink slowed down a response... Here's what I did.
1. First you need to break the subject in, always stay calm and logical. A good way to break the ice is to ask questions about sparring, why is there no contact, and that you're going to start cross training in other styles to augment your knowledge. When you mention you are going to train other styles they will threaten to kick you out of the school. Of course this would be illegal and is card you can play later on.
2. After the initial ice breaker go back to them and further explain your disatisfaction, mention that the style is not for you. You need realistic training regime and you doubt the lineage and fluff of grand master simon. Now mention the website (network54 forums). You will be met by more resistance and they won't want to give you your money back. Now read your contract there should be a line in there that says you will be charged X dollars for each hour of classtime and be refunded the remaining amount. Calculate this amount to determine your refund, if its negative i think you are pretty much screwed.
3. If there is a balance owed you now need to step it up and emphasize your ability to cause problems, tell them youll start another website, youll campaign out front of the studie and tell people your story, tell them youll be a disatisfied student who will only cause problems unless they refund you your hard earned money.
4. Issue a complaint with the better business bureau, go talk to the police they probably won't do anything but its good to let em know.
5. Call them at least once a week, badger them be persistent, hit em hard with the truth but be respectful about it. Don't want to cause tension, theres a high probabilty that many of their comments will anger you throughout the process but in the end you can win your money back. Its a mental battle and remember these guys dont get paid tons (the junior instructors) try get them your side as they may not be fully indoctrinated , make sure all of them know whats going on, sow the seeds of doubt within their own system. You must be seen as poison without overtly appearing to be so. The more of them that know your story the more tarnished TKFs internal rep becomes as the questions grow. They preach honest and integrity so they understand the need to save. Basically you have to convince them that they will lose much more than $1000 in business by keeping you in the school as an "activist" as such it would be in their best interest to "buy you out."
Anyways I approached it as a mental battle with these thoughts in mind and after a lot of anger, stress (anger and stress were never revealed to TKF). and persistence I got that cheque in my hands! BTW my brother got his money back too.
I'd prefer Cops.
Originally Posted by JohnnyCache
"Grand Master Simon! This is the police, we were informed that you are th3 suxx0r at Kung Fu"
"There he is! He's making a run for it!"
"You are under arr--"
"**** you punk ass bitch, I'll Dim Mak yo' ass"
"You are under arrerst for th3 suck."
"I'll Dim Mak yo' ass"
"You have the right to--"
"You'll die in 3 days bitch!! DIM MAK!!"
Normally when one contract modifies another such modification has to be explicitly explained in the text of the second contract. Secondly the cancellation penalty must be explicit and given the timing of the contract it should be in the first contract. Finally the contract should comply with applicable state regulations like those governing memberships at health clubs.
Originally Posted by xxx23
I would like to see those contracts and if you are willing I will pm your address, however since you are not in Connecticut my suggestion is the following. 1) Go consult with a business lawyer who handles contracts and pay him for his time to analyse this paperwork according to your state's standards. Two, if he thinks you can challenge it, sue them in small claims court based on this theory as to why the contract is invalid. Third, if you win, cut an arrangement with a collections agency to pursue this matter.
I would like to see the contract too, not necessarily any names, but what exactly is in the contract. I don't have a TKF school out here, but I would be interested to see how anyone could be swindled by it.
Replacing one contract with another one for similar services is actually illegal, so both of these contracts are likely unenforceable. Good news for me.
Unicron, thanks for your story. Because they owe *me* money, though, even after that ridiculous $40/hr clause, I didn't make an effort to discuss it with them. I went straight to getting a lawyer to handle it, so... we'll see how that goes.
I do have another question for you guys, although it could be considered kinda unrelated! I checked out Muay Thai and Taekwondo classes as possible replacements for TKF, and I was wondering if you all had any suggestions as to which style would be better to pursue. My concerns with Muay Thai is that during the class they didn't seem at all concerned with blocking, or practical self-defense situations, but the style did seem pretty powerful... and with Taekwondo, I was worried that everyone seemed only to be trying to kick really hard with no technique, but they also did more self-defense related stuff than in the MT class.
Apologies to anyone who practices either of these styles and is offended by my impressions of what their shortcomings seem to be... just remember that I don't have experience, those were only my thoughts after attending one trial class, and I'm just trying to find the most productive place to spend my time. :) Any help is much appreciated.