2012 Florida Statutes
Required disclosures; prohibited acts.
Required disclosures; prohibited acts.
559.3905 Required disclosures; prohibited acts.—
(1) It shall be unlawful for any buying club to fail to disclose to a prospective member in writing, prior to the sale of any contract for buying services:
(a) That goods or services can only be bought through catalogs with no opportunity to inspect samples if such is the case.
(b) The buying club’s policies regarding warranties or guarantees on goods ordered, return of ordered goods by buyers, procedures for cancellation of merchandise orders by the buyer, and refunds of deposits for the cancellation of orders.
(c) Any charges, such as estimated freight costs, handling fees, credit life or disability insurance, suppliers’ and buying clubs’ markup, and other costs incidental to the purchase of goods through the buying club and which are to be paid by the buyer.
(d) Advice that the contract for buying service or incidental retail installments contracts will be transferred, sold, or assigned to a third party if such practice is the case.
(e) The percentage of the purchase price required as a down payment on merchandise orders of any nature. This prohibition applies in all cases where rebates are offered, regardless of whether such promised rebates are contingent upon the seller’s ability to enroll the referred persons into the buying club.
(2) It shall be unlawful for any buying club to fail to disclose to a prospective member and to give the prospective member an opportunity to examine a list of suppliers and the nature of merchandise which is available to buyers from cooperative suppliers prior to the sale of any contract for buying services. Such lists shall be updated bimonthly.
(3) It shall be unlawful for a buying club to:
(a) Represent that it is affiliated with any other buying club organization or showroom unless an affiliation in fact exists and unless the prospective buyer would be legally entitled to services from the allegedly affiliated organization as a result of being a buyer of the subject buying club. If such an affiliation is claimed by the representative of the buying club, written proof of such a binding legal right shall be given the prospective buyer, including a description of the services available from the affiliated club, before the signing of any contract for discount buying services or application;
(b) Represent that the prospective buyer will be entitled to a particular benefit unless that benefit is currently available from the buying club on a regular basis;
(c) Offer any gifts or consideration of any nature to a prospective buyer as a solicitation for such persons to attend a buying club sales presentation or to sign a membership application or a contract for buying services where the club fails to honor or deliver the gift or consideration in accordance with the terms of its promise;
(d) Represent or suggest in any manner that it offers its buyers the lowest prices, excluding freight and service charges, available on all categories of merchandise handled by the club, unless such is true;
(e) Represent that merchandise is available to the buyer from any particular supplier unless such is true at the time the representation is made. Reference to unavailable suppliers or manufacturers may be made only for purposes of allowing prospective buyers to compare merchandise costs against those manufacturers which are available through the club. No buying club may represent to a prospective buyer that the club can purchase any item of merchandise at supplier’s cost unless such is true;
(f) Make savings claims that are not based on price comparisons with retailers offering the same or comparable items in the trade area in which the claims are made and with prices at which the merchandise is actually sold or offered for sale; or
(g) Misrepresent a material fact or create a false or misleading impression regarding the advertising sale or promotion of a buying service or club.
History.—s. 1, ch. 91-72.