Weight loss company suddenly closes

January 3, 2008 7:12:33 PM PST
If losing weight is your New Year's resolution, we have a cautionary tale for you. It centers around Pure Weight Loss, which at one time was L.A. Weight Loss. The company is now closed and consumers are wondering how to get their money back.Customers we spoke with say the doors closed without warning, leaving some people scrambling to get the products owed them and trying to get back hundreds they have already paid to Pure Weight Loss.

The doors are locked and the store is empty and for some customers of Pure Weight Loss, this is the first sign something is not right.

Customer Maybelle Rodriguez explained, "I just came back from vacation and I came here today and I did not know they were closed."

Pure Weight Loss customers tell us they prepaid for hundreds of dollars in products and services and now are unsure what to do next.

"I am just surprised that they are not open anymore," Rodriguez said. "They did not give us any notice."

On the company's web site there is little indication of what went wrong, but there is a toll free number customers can call - 1-877-524-3571. The line is only open from 11am to 4pm central time, but after a short time on hold, we were connected with a customer care representative.

We are told refunds might be issued to customers depending on their contracts. However, another option is available. Pure Weight Loss customers are being told they can transfer contracts over to Jenny Craig with no additional service fees.

The quick closing of Pure Weight Loss has Deana Turner at the Better Business Bureau issuing a warning to anyone considering signing up for a service that wants you to pay in advance.

Turner warned, "Don't prepay for a bunch of stuff. Do things slowly. See actually if the product works first, and you can also see what the customer service is like."

One Pure Weight Loss customer told us she prepaid because the products came at a discount, but Turner warns those deals can be risky.

"That really is the sales pitch," she said. "They tell you that you can get all of this at a much cheaper price, but in the end she didn't get anything at all."

When we asked a Pure Weight Loss spokesperson why the stores are closing we received the following statement:

    "After 18 years of servicing customers' weight control needs, Pure Weight Loss, Inc. will be closing on January 4, 2008. Fierce competition from the Internet, the introduction of Alli, the over-the-counter weight loss pill, and other commercial diet programs combined with a difficult economic environment have forced us to take this action. We will work diligently to provide our clients with the guidance they need to independently continue on their journey to weight loss and better health prior to our closing date. We want to thank all of our clients who have given us the opportunity to service them over the last 18 years."
You can find more information about options available to customers on the Pure Weight Loss website.
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