Texas Travel Club Rescission Bill Fails to Pass

2011-06-27

Issue Brief

 Rep. Will Hartnett, representing District 114 in North Dallas, has introduced HB 972 that would give purchasers of travel club memberships a five-business-day rescission period.  The first hearing was March 28 in the House Business & Industry Committee and the Committee Report with amendments was adopted April 18.

Impact

The bill, apparently filed as a result of consumer complaints against travel clubs allegedly offering “discounted” travel services, would have applied to timeshares, which have been regulated since 1985 under the Texas Timeshare Act and timeshare buyers are provided with a six-day rescission period upon purchase.  The Texas Real Estate Commission administers the Timeshare Act.

Position/Call to Action

ARDA and ARDA-ROC supported the rescission period for travel clubs, but asked that timeshare entities already subject to the Texas Timeshare Act be exempted from the bill,  A committee substitute, with the timeshare exemption, was presented for adoption at the March 28 hearing.  The Committee Report adopted on April 18 contains the amendments sought by ARDA and ARDA-ROC exempting timeshare entities from the duplicate rescission period.  A copy of the amended HB 972 can be found here.   Industry advocates attended the hearing.  Only one person testified in favor of the bill; none against.  A representative of the Texas Attorney General's Office also attended as a resource.

Resolution

The Texas Travel Club bill, HB 972, failed to make it out of the Texas House and was not heard by the Senate this session.  Had the bill been enacted, it would have imposed a five-day rescission period on consumer contracts for travel club services.  Timeshares were exempted in the House version.

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