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Vacation Owners Claim Bluegreen Sold Timeshares Under False Pretenses

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Timeshare owners are beginning to put their foot down when it comes to broken promises by sales teams. Every month, a new bundle of legal claims surface across the industry regarding the experience of vacation ownership. Whether it be scams in the relief realm or simple buyer’s remorse, the trip’s starting to hit the fan. Like we’ve covered a number of times in past articles, nearly every form of regret stems from the initial sale. This is nothing new, smoke and mirror techniques have been used since the 1980’s. A class action lawsuit that was filed back in September of 2017, claiming Bluegreen sold timeshares under false pretenses, is only adding to the stigma of the timeshare industry. 

Although many class action lawsuits form when victims experience similar outcomes in close proximity, timeshare legal battles often involve people from across the country. It’s highly unlikely that any of them attended the same timeshare presentation. What makes this simple fact interesting is that every plaintiff in a class action suit against a timeshare company would have had to experience similar misconduct. When a good number of vacation owners have the same complaints as buyers they’ve never met, then there’s a good chance that misleading sales tactics are frequently occurring.

Details on the Bluegreen Corp. Lawsuit.

In the 2017 lawsuit against Bluegreen Corp., a few dozen couples and a handful of individual buyers from across the United States came together to sue the timeshare conglomerate. They all believed they were duped, and that on many occasions, Bluegreen sold timeshares under false pretenses. While some lawsuits involve detailed acts of misconduct, this action was pretty straightforward. Each owner felt trapped in their agreement after the purchase didn’t match its description.

COST OF THE BLUEGREEN TIMESHARE

According to the U.S. District Court filings, the plaintiffs stated the timeshare interval was not only more expensive than what was originally presented to them, but the promised benefits never transpired. Attorneys Todd Friedman and Jason Whittemore wrote, “Contrary to claims made by Bluegreen sales people, annual maintenance fees on the units increased substantially each year.” Thousands of dollars that wasn’t planned for was handicapping their experience and creating a financial burden that didn’t make sense to them anymore.

FAILURE TO PROVIDE PROMOTED BENEFITS.

Aside from complaints about the unexpected cost, plaintiffs also claimed Bluegreen sold them on a points program that was supposed to roll over year after year. Supposedly, the sales team assured them they could cash in their points for Bluegreen rentals and other units. But in reality, their points expired at the end of every year. In order to close the deal, timeshare representatives allegedly even told victims that the product came with a money back guarantee. In the end, owners stated they were not able to cancel and refund requests were denied – causing them to seek out other buyers that could relate. They soon found that the tactics Bluegreen used may be in violation of Florida’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act.

FINAL STATEMENTS FROM LEGAL COUNSEL.

The victim’s attorneys initially sought more than $5 million in damages so the federal judge over the case would deem it a class action lawsuit. “These representations were false and (Bluegreen) would not permit the plaintiffs to cancel or refund their timeshares, routinely doubled or tripled the represented maintenance fees, and did not roll over any ‘points’ between years,” Whittemore and Friedman wrote. Whether these timeshare owners proved Bluegreen sold timeshares under false pretenses or not, the trend of similar complaints continues in the industry today. 

On March 20th of 2018, 38 plaintiffs withdrew from the case after two days of settlement negotiations.

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16 Responses

  1. I’d give anything to have our over 8000 dollars back. Now they have me in collections over maintenance fees. Our son is in for like 7000 on top of ours. I’m about to stroke out. No vacation but they want their damn maintenance fees.

    1. I agree Jane, our maintenance fees were around $600 a year. Now, they are near $1700 and go up every year, but the resort doesnt make major improvements seen with those millions of dollars in maintenance fees.

      If we knew then what we know now….

    2. They also have me in collections for maintenance fees. Mine were $600 a year and no being a single
      Mother and Nurse, I still can’t afford the fees. My now ex-husband and I were the ones who bought in but now I’m supposed to retain it after the divorce. I can barely afford to take a vacation now as it sits anyway let alone pay these outrageous fees.

  2. Ok just went in for our owner’s update. A lawyer or JD rep was waiting for us. Entrapment tactic- did not sign anything waiting for class action to recoup thousands of people’s investment. Just let me know how I can help. Mike

  3. Hi Mike – I would like more information. I’m so disappointed that I fell for their trap. I can’t book any trips and keep losing my points because nothing is available. Paying over $800 a year in maintenance fees is ridiculous! These timeshares are unsaleable and worthless. You can find them on ebay for $1.00 for 20,000 Annual Usage Points to just take over and transfer deed. What can we do about this? For those who haven’t purchased anything from Bluegreen… PLEASE DONT!

  4. My fiance and I are in the same boat. We couldn’t even travel due to COVID, but still have to pay for maintenance fees! I feel cheated by the company. I’d do anything to get rid of this stupid timeshare. I don’t even want any money back, just take it off my hands!

  5. We have timeshare and our fees have accused to $4,000. We tried to negotiate too. They are trying to strong arm us as well.
    – in addition to maintenance fees escalating at rates which exceed their actual maintenance costs, but instead are being used for expansion, which was not realistic during Covid;
    – the terms offered during Covid with the expectation of folks traveling when we were under a state of emergency which limited travel are unrealistic; and
    – they offered to release us, take back the timeshare and get rid of our back fees, but we get nothing for our timeshare purchase. We paid for the timeshare outright when we purchased it.

    It’s a ripoff.
    Are there any class action suits recruiting?

  6. I had my time share paid off and didn’t owe them a dime. in 2010 my wife died of breast cancer that she was diagnose with in 2008. we didnt have a cancer policy, so we wound up losing most everything we had.. including my retirement and all our savings… we couldn’t keep up the tripled expense of maintenance fees and Bluegreen wouldnt lie split up the dues and pay payments throughout the year .. To make a long story short Bluegreen foreclosed on our timeshare even though it was paid for . They just suddenly foreclosed because of unpaid late fees. No court action, not prior notice , just got a notice in mail one day the it had been foreclosed on and my membership suspended….This company is corrupt, disgusting , and are ripping people off still yet today just as they have been for years. I never knew who to contact to get help so I just chalked it up to a really bad decision to purchase from these people…Too late for me , but I wish someone could do something about these people who continue to prey on the us-suspecting public.

  7. Wow! What a rip off from the wonderful picture that is painted when the high pressure salesperson is tightening the “close the deal” sales performance screws. This vacation plan has been a nightmare from the beginning. Lost points, additional unplanned fees, and the maintenance fees that continue to increase every year! Another thing it is often difficult to get a reservation through the club because all of the times are already taken or it is outside of the allowed timeframe for booking. I remember being told that our points would give us the opportunity to vacation all over the United States and travel to ore exotic destinations. They made it seem like once you paid for your points that it would be smooth sailing but that is not the case and has never been. Lost points, fees, fees & more fees and don’t forget Maintenances! I will gladly give me points to anyone that is willing to take them along with the title. How can I get Out??

  8. We’ve had no issues to speak of. We don’t always get to go where we want when we want, but over all, not a bad experience. We pay about $1500 a year in maintenance fees and usually get about 12 days in a 2BR on average. The resorts we’ve been to are quiet and from 3 to 5 star quality. Overall we are pleased with our experience.

  9. Also want to add: on an owner review/update I misinterpreted some things that were said. I thought I needed more points to get certain benefits and was going to buy an additional 5000 points. After reviewing everything, they corrected me and we cancelled the sale. This happened at Mountainloft in Gatlinburg. It did take several hours of my time, but they didn’t sell me more points under false pretenses, even though it was my misunderstanding.

  10. I paid 2020 Maintenance fees over $1800 and carried my points. Due to Covid was not able to use. When it became time to use there were no places to stay that were not booked. I am a Silver member and have been with Blue Green since 2007. I am being harassed now for 2021 maintenance fees. This ridiculous that a company that was not running fa full year can ask for more money. Does anyone know if there is an attorney out there that can define how they can continue to collect with no proof they were fully operational and had locations that were not affected.

  11. How do we get involved in the class action lawsuit? Is it too late? Our attorneys have done NOTHING. We hired the attorney two years ago! This is still hitting our credit report.

  12. Is there a class action lawsuit going on now that I can be a part of for the same reasons? Broken promises, misrepresenting of so many benefits that are not true.

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