- By Daniel SOT
During the Coronavirus: If the Kindergarten or the Gym does not provide their services, you will not have to pay their subscriptions
As a result of the government decreeing the state of alarm due to the coronavirus, many businesses and private and / or public centres have been forced to temporarily interrupt their activities due to legal requirements, in order to prevent the virus from spreading.
These activities include gyms or sports centres, kindergartens, or other activities, such as soccer, swimming, etc.
For example, in the case of Kindergartens, currently, the parents are the ones who are taking care of their children as they are all confined in their own homes and due to the closing and interruption of the centre services. With Gyms and other sport centres is occurring the exact same thing, as the customers cannot use the facilities of these sport centres, even though they paid their monthly subscription.
Consequently, while the State of Alarm lasts, we have a recurrent question: Should we continue to pay the fees to which we are bound by the different entities even if they are not providing any services?
The answer is negative. While the alarm status lasts and the centres cannot provide their services, there is no need to pay the amount for a service that is not being performed.
In order to provide legal certainty, the Government has issued the Royal Decree Law 11/2020 of March 31, which adopts urgent complementary measures in the field of Consumer Law. In said Royal Decree, in its section 36.3 establishes the following:
“3. Regarding the contracts for the provision of services of successive tract, the company providing services may offer options for recovery of the service afterwards and only if the consumer could not or did not accept said recovery, then the amounts would be refunded, paid in the part corresponding to the period of the service not provided by said cause or, under the acceptance of the consumer, to reduce the amount resulting from the future fees to be charged for the provision of the service. Likewise, the service provider will refrain from submitting new monthly payments until the service can be provided normally, without this leading to the termination of the contract, except at the will of both parties.”
Therefore, the centre or kindergarten may offer us the possibility of, having paid the fee or paying it while it lasts, recover the hours of the service later (in months that they can provide the service). Now, if for whatever reasons the consumer is not satisfied with this proposal made by the kindergarten or by the employer, the latter are obliged to:
- Return the amounts already paid for the days that the service could not be enjoyed for the reasons stated.
- Do not collect any further new fees until the service can be provided normally.
SUSPENSION OF PAYMENT vs. TERMINATION. - It should be noted that, except if the consumer does not wish otherwise, the contract is not terminated or ended, but simply the services and payments are temporary suspended. This means that, when the service can be provided again normally, the kindergarten, the centre or the company cannot impose new registration or registration fees.
DURATION.- Remember that all these measures will be applied until the kindergarten, the centre or the company can return to provide the services that were hired with complete normality.