LA Weight Loss Charlotte Franchisee Sheds Unwanted Members, Employees

According to a story on WCNC, Charlotte, NC LA Weight Loss franchise owner Rick Rex has shed those unwanted customers and employees by abruptly closing his weight loss centers. Last Friday, all 10 Charlotte, NC area LA Weight Loss centers closed without notice.
Employees, some of whom had worked at LA Weight Loss for years, were given no notice, no severance and will be paid through the end of the week they worked.
Some LA weight Loss members have are owed thousands of dollars in products and services. The owner does not return calls, and the Better Business Bureau has been unable to track him down.

27 thoughts on “LA Weight Loss Charlotte Franchisee Sheds Unwanted Members, Employees”

  1. I should receive my paid-for products: LA bars, jetstart and Omega-trim supplements. I cannot believe the company was so deceptive.

  2. What in the world has happened here? What the owners did to the customers was bad enough, but what they have done to the employees is ridiculous!! I have met some really great people who worked at LA Weightloss and feel terrible for them. Is there a class action lawsuit against the owners of L.A. Weightloss centers in Charlotte NC?

  3. I am trying to find this same thing out myself. Anyone know anything about a class action lawsuit? I wouldn’t even know where to begin but I am looking …..

  4. Hi there, when I heard of this terribly tragic end to LA Weightloss of Charlotte, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for both sides of the complaints. Both the employees & the clients. I was the manager of the Rock Hill, SC location for 6 months. We were trained to steal peoples money by the owner of the company, Mr. Richard Rex. I made Mr. Rex so much money by taking the money of people I knew would likely not complete the program. Mr. Rex often gave cash rewards to those managers who could get the most money off of people. In one instance, we had a client that was so heavy, our scales couldn’t properly weigh her, so I called Mr. Rex to ask for a new weight scale to weigh our client who paid us over $5,000 to help her lose weight and he made me drive 2.5 hours to a store in Greenville, SC to pick up a scale from another store and exchange ours. It was so bad because Mr. Rex was so cheap, that my store was left without a way to even weigh clients for a whole day just to exchange this scale because he would not just buy a new scale, they were only 450.00. His response to me saying that we needed a new scale, “It was the clients fault she was overweight, if she wanted a new scale, she could buy one”. During my tenure as manager, I was only paid $12 per hour and my staff only $7 per hour. It was so bad, that clients gave clothes to one of my staff member who couldn’t even afford to clothe her child. Meanwhile, the center was earning over $30,000 per week. The company’s success rate at the time I was employed there was less than 10%. I came upon clients that were robbed out of weeks, food and essential tools so that they could meet their plans because of the owner. There were times our toilets would back up and Mr. Rex would make us go with out proper plumbing for days , and would never hire a plumber to fix the problem. All of the expenses I incurred personally to buy soap for the bathrooms, pens to write with and utensils for work that i was never paid for, came up to over $1300 and I was never paid back. I finally became to honest to work there. When I went back for my last pay, this girl that had worked for me, Adrianne who was 3 months pregnant at the time was instructed to “whip my ass”, chased me out into the parking lot, yes pregnant, and tried to start a physical confrontation with me. To top it all off, Mr. Rex is a Baptist Preacher in Mooresville, NC. He lives lavishly in his house at Lake Norman. It’s sickening. Just thought I’d share. I’m sorry to all of you who have experienced losses!

  5. Desi Alexander—I can not believe that you are making up stories about Rick Rex. I was the manager of Pineville when we closed. I worked for the company 2 years and he was nothing be good to me and my staff. I know for a fact that Rick would NEVER make a comment about someone that was “over weight” or would be MAKE you drive 2.5 hours somewhere to pick up a scale. Plus…he is NOT a preacher, he is a Christian and goes to church but that doesnt make his a preacher. You must have been fired and you are just mad because you couldnt do your job. Yes, Rick would give cash incentives to managers…however, they were always linked to which center had the highest weight loss. Of course we were there to sell products and programs. It was a business….just like any other business out there. I did not sell anything to anyone that didnt need or want the program. Also Rick is very upset that this had to happen…its not like he just up and ran with a ton of money. He RAN OUT of money and wasnt able to keep the company going just like other companies that have gone under in the last year due to the recession, I just thought that everyone needed to know the truth about Rick….he doesnt deserve to have lies about him going around. He was nothing but a good man that wasnt able to keep his company going.

  6. Funnily enough, Rick Rex is such a FANTABULOUS GUY that the BBB hasn’t been able to contact him since? If such a Christian, how about the “Cry they Buy” tactic? Tat was never verbalized in your training?? He ran off with the customer money, knowing LAWL was going under and taking as much as he could get before the flop. The fact is Mr. Rex along with many other owners took money from the poor and innocent clients who entrusted him to help them change their lives, and had absolutely NO intentions on refunding any of the monies he took. As for my personal experience with Mr. Rex, that’s not for you to decide whether or not it’s true, you weren’t there. He knows what happened & I know what happened, that’s all that need to know. As for me being fired, honey I don’t think so, I was fabulous at my job & sold many many products which made Mr. Rex a very wealthy man, and I helped lots of clients by doing my job correctly – but like the many others who quit his organization, there becomes a time when what’s right prevails & someone has to do what’s right. I did what was right and I quit LAWCOS on the pretense that I just couldn’t stomach anymore wrong doing! If Mr. Rex & LAWCOS are such a great organization, why was his turn over 90%? Why did he sell all of those prepaid plans and products to all of those people just before he knew his doors were going to close? If that’s what you call “Running a business” or “Just doing business”, it’s evident why you are now out of a job. Myself on the other hand, landed an international position with the worlds largest tanning corporation and now live in the sunny land down under – Thank God I wasn’t in on this whole mess! l In closing, Karma is a beast! Richard Rex is STARTING to get what he deserves – STARTING. Once the lawsuits settle, he’ll be getting alot more of what comes around, goes around. Personally, I think jail time should be in order, but unfortunately, the laws of North Carolina just aren’t steep enough for people like Mr. Rex. Oh yeah, I haven’t heard of any recent auctions in the Charlotte area to liquidate Mr. Rex’s assets so that he can pay off all of the people & creditors he owes… Wouldn’t that be the “Christian” thing to do??

  7. Wow….you are so right! Thank you for sharing! Man, I hope Rick gets whats coming to him!

    Im so glad that YOU informed me of all of this! Thanks again 🙂

  8. It seems as though all of the owners are using the following excuse as to why it is that they took client’s money and now can’t pay up: “We take this opportunity to inform you that LAWL Maritimes Inc., the company that operated the Centre you attended, has been put into receivership by the secured creditors of the Company.

    Unfortunately as a result of the receivership, the Company no longer has any capital and is unable to provide any refund. We are sorry but we are unable to process your request.

    Customer Service”


  9. In July of 2008, My husband and I joined La Weight Loss at the Mooresville,NC location. We joined knowing that we could not do it if we did not do it together. The next day I found out that I was pregnant. We went to the center and they told us that we had recieved a huge discount and if we ask for the refund and wanted to join again it would be 2-3 times more expensive. So we said that we would pay and do the program after the baby was born (which he was just born March 26). The told my husband to try the program without me and if it did not work (because we kept saying that one of us could not do the program without the other) then he could start again when I started. Well obviously it did not work and we were so excited to start the program May 1st just to find out that the center had closed and there is NO centers opened. The phone numbers on the websites had busy-like sounds when you call. I never even got anything from them and never got any consultations…..I gave them my money and got NOTHING!!!! How do I get my money back. We did not have the Care card but did set up a 6 month payment plan which is already paid for. Can someone help….do i need to contact an attorney? Thank you for any suggestions. On top of needing this money bad since my husband and I are both out of work with a newborn and another child, I feel scammed.

  10. Is there a lawsuit going on? I am still owed my 1 year of maintenance plus the 6 weeks stabilization time, not to mention the LA Lite bars that they insisted they keep until I needed them. And what about our files? All my information is in there!

  11. I am not sure if someone has already filed a suit against the owner or La Weight Loss. I would like to get the process started or at least talk with an attorney to find out our legal options. I will persue this, this coming up week. I will try to set up a website with all of the information that I find out. I encourage everyone who has been wronged by La Weight Loss to at least get a consultation (most attorneys have free consultations to see if they can actually help or not) with an attorney so that we have many views on this. Also we need to do something about this NOW or we will never see our money.

  12. I completely hun. I used to work for Richard Rex and he is likely living the same lavish lifestyle on Lake Norman. You can bet that all of his assets were separate from his company. What about his silent partner, Kim Menard? She was the one that used to do the TV ads in the Charlotte area and Upstate, SC. You know he owned stores all of the way to Anderson, SC? He had like 15 or 20 stores. He knew LA Weightloss Corporate was going to shut it’s doors and he milked those locations for all they were worth. I guarantee you, he’s sold most of his stock on ebay. He was paid already on all of those memberships and all of that inventory belonged to customers. That’s just the kind of person he is. his turnover was over 200%. His salary for Center Managers was $12 per hour Plus Commission and man did I have some good commission checks back in the day. I just got tired of the backhanded practices of telling people they didn’t have weeks when they did, hiring almost every week b/c the pay for counselors was $7 per hour. I could go on and on honey. You build a website and call lawyers, call GE (Care Credit) they will know who to get hold of as well because they financed tousands of dollars for LA Weightloss clients. This sickens me. If you want to find Richard Rex, he lives in Mooresville, Lake Norman, just visit some of the big churches, I don’t know which one he preaches at, but it’s one of the larger ones “he’s very religious”. He couldn’t help corporate filing bankruptcy but he knew it was coming and he took all those innocent peoples money. Sick Sick Sick – he will get everything he deserves. Your money has afforded him fabulous accommodations, nice cars and private schools for his children – doesn’t that make you feel all ewey gewey inside??

  13. To Richard Rex is a Liar…..umm yeah I worked for him as well…and just so everyone knows Rick does not have children….nor does he preach at a church. Wow is all I can say….Plus you didnt even spell Kims last name right and she wasnt a silent partner…she was ALWAYS at the centers. So who is the liar now? Did you even work for the company?! If you are going to bad talk Rick and everyone else at least get your facts straight before you do….just a thought.

  14. Anyone who thinks LAWL was honest is crazy! Everytime I went in there (Huntersville/Cornelius location), they tried to get more money out of me. I haven’t even added up all the money I spent there but it’s close to 1500. Now they’re closed and we are just screwed! I will say that most of the counselors and managers were nice, but I think just forced to sell, sell, sell!
    I just get so furious every time I try once again to get some response from LAWL. I signed on in May 07 and continued to visit my center 3x week until I got pregnant in Dec. Of course before I signed up, I asked the manager what would happen if I got pregnant. She said I would just have to “go on hold” until 6 weeks after the baby was born. No big deal, right? Wrong! When I returned I had 9wks(I earned more weeks for staying on tract, etc.) of weight loss left, my stabilization weeks, and maintenance. I now had about 20 lbs to lose after having the baby, but since I was nursing there was a whole new plan. I understood that, since I would need to eat more calories to satisfy both me and the baby. But, they would only guarantee 1pound per wk instead of 2 since I was nursing. Therefore I needed to buy more weeks!! I refused to buy more weeks and was told that if not, then I would be charged a $50 reinstatement fee! What?! I was never told about this policy up front. Which I think should have been discussed when I signed up and asked questions about retuning after pregnancy! The manager knew I was trying to get pregnant and probably thought if she disclosed this info I wouldn’t agree to sign up! After putting up a fight, they waived the fee and let me go with my 9 weeks. I honestly only stuck with it about 2 weeks before I decided my priorities had changed and decided to return once I had stopped nursing and my son was a little easier to tote around. Not to mention, that they already told me my refund would no longer be valid since I didn’t agree to buy more weeks and stick to my original contract. I was very distraught about the whole thing. I had worked so hard until I got pregnant, lost a lot of weight and spent a lot of time and money at the center and now had lost it all. They called often (and I responded), trying to get me to start coming back. A month later my location and all the other Charlotte locations suddenly closed.
    I am still trying to figure out how to get my money back for all my unused weeks and tons of bars I purchased in advance. I paid with CareCredit, but paid off my balance a long time before they closed and most of the bar purchases were on my checkcard. If anyone in the Charlotte area has had any luck with a response from corporate or refunds, please let me know.

  15. Hey there girlie, I would like to say first and foremost, I am so sorry for how LA Weightloss has treated you. I would go on to tell you more, bu everytime I post on this website, some asshole from LA Weightloss (who will never state their name or affiliation) comes back with lies lies and more lies about how wonderful the company owner, Rick Rex is and how I’m an asshole for calling a spade a spade. It is likely that you will never get your money back as no class action lawsuits will be able to be enforced against Mr. Rex as he is playing the victim of LA Corporate. The fact of the matter is, Richard Rex knew that LAWL corporate was bankrupt a month before he closed his doors. Atleast a month. Yet, he sucked every last dime he could out of the company without regard for the innocent people he was screwing out of their hard earned cash. Unfortunately though, the independent owners are claiming that corporate blindsided them and they only closed their doors because corporate gave them no other choice nor was there any warning. Well, I will tell you, that’s a bunch of horse shit because, Mr. Rex could’ve easily changed the name on his store fronts and people would’ve still kept coming and he could’ve chosen to keep honoring the agreements that he had made with all of his customers and been paid in full for. He would’ve actually made more money, because he wouldn’t have been having to pay LAWL royalties. He had so many locations, they would’ve supported themselves. LA Weight Loss & Pure Weight Loss were just names, and the independent owners were all responsible for their own businesses, they were just paying LAWL for the name, and nothing else. Point being, RIchard Rex and “higher” “Corporate” staff members and wife all knew LA was closing and chose to continue taking your money. Furthermore, Richard Rex is a con artist who was likely waiting for an opportunity to walk away with everything and have no consequences. He was successful. He knew after he closed, and defaulted on all his leases & creditors, his credit wouldn’t allow him the lifestyle he has grown accustomed, so he continued sucking the company dry, in order to keep enough cash to buy him a new life after he closed the stores. It’s unfortunate for all of you, but now, everyone knows what I’ve known for years. RICHARD REX AND HIS COHORTS ARE ALL SHEISTERS! THEY TOOK YOUR MONEY AND BECAUSE OF A GLITCH IN THE SYSTEM IE: LAWL CORPORATE, HE WILL KEEP YOUR MONEY AND HAVE NO CRIMINAL CONSEQUENCES.

  16. I just went to La Weight Loss’ website to find, they are shockingly still giving press releases and trying to lure more customers. Go to – I can’t believe this. This is ridiculous! They even have a NEW weight loss program called “Rapid Results”. OMFG – when are the laws in this country going to protect the consumers from such scam artists? They should never be allowed to operate a business anywhere in America! Anywhere for that matter! Start writing and complaining/ UPDATE: Richard Rex still has of yet to be contacted by the better business bureau! What a crock! I mean crook! Not even man enough to face up to his responsibility as a human. He makes me sick and so does his wife, she’s the one that is on here constantly rebutting everyone’s commentary! Screw you and him both, you will get what you both deserve. Oh wait, you already are. How fun is it not to be able to the grocery store with your family or go out to eat at a local restaurant because everywhere you go, there’s someone you screwed over! At your church too! You are some sick people. Like another Jim and Tammy Faye! I think they must have been your role models! You are the laughing stock of the Queen City! LOL

  17. Well Well. I saw this coming. I used to work for Mr. Rick Rex a long time ago and did for a long time. The man Rick Rex: Computer nerd, bland personality, all business. Why he was the owner of a weight loss company is beyond me. He did not care about people losing weight. I knew this company would eventually shut down. The employee turn over rate was nearly every week. Hardly a way to keep a business running and happy customers. But, Rick knew that happy losing customers were spending customers. Staff members were literally TRAINED AND TAUGHT to sell. Thats it. Sell Sell Sell. They honestly believed that as long as it was medically safe, every client should buy every single product: bars, teas, powders, pills, drinks, potion, what-nots. It was intense. Kim, the speed popping pain in the ass, full of shit (pardon), district manager/ vice, would come in, pick up a chart and ask “why isn’t he using X product? Why isn’t she taking Y product?” It was all about the sales. There were sayings like “snake in the grass” which meant being able to sell clients twice as much product as they needed for a YEAR AND A HALF of service. They claimed they sold everything in bulk because it was incentive for clients not to quit the program… Probably true. In my experience, if any of the very successful clients we had couldve quit any time they wanted to, they would have and wouldnt have lost weight. I did see a lot of great things happen. But, not NEARLY as much as I just saw thousands of people getting ripped off. People would get tired of us selling and flip out yelling, demanding refunds. We would simply write in the file “DO NOT SELL” which meant this person won’t buy. Everyone worked on commission and they paid crap, so selling was how everyone made money. The products were CRAP. They were SOOOO overpriced and most people who couldnt use them medically did better than those who did use them. The company sucked. Seriously. They made huge promises they couldn’t keep, and had IRON STRONG contracts. I feel so terrible for everyone in this situation, but I will say this: Do not expect any money back. The first thing they say (quietly) in the consultations is that there are ABSOLUTELY NO REFUNDS. And, I have only seen them happen about a dozen times, and for medical reasons. People have gone to the BBB before and received nothing. But, they signed the contract, Im sorry to say. Plus, there were HUNDREDS of people I encountered that would come, do well on the program, but then start to cheat and eat whatever they wanted. They would stop losing weight, or start to gain and would blame the program or counselors. Not fair. And a lot of these people who just didn’t want to do the hard part quit. Just quit. Never called about refunds, didn’t care. Never to be seen or heard from again. I guarantee these people will want refunds too. All in all. Youre going to have to do individual claims, not group (since all are situational) and the only people I think that may have a chance at getting money back will be the ones that were going consistently and now can’t, or the ones that had just started. I really wish that wasn’t the case. I hate that so many people just got entirely ripped off. I hate that I was ever a part of that. These contracts are seriously indestructible. These owners lived very very well. But, thats because they were selling very very well. They hired the lowest of uneducated people (most of the time) and rearranged their brains to sell sell sell. And they did. High school graduates were now “nutritional counselors” that wore lab coats and had blood pressure cuffs. They were just as trained to wear lab coats as make up artists at JC Pennys. (No offense make up artists). This company made money, often being ranked in the top ten with sales every week out of the nation! The whole nation! So yes, theyre gonna claim being blind sided by corporate, and they will fake the emotions that all of you are actually feeling. They will play this victim who feels stabbed and lost. They will do all of this, and probably better than anyone anticipates. It sucks. But, do not give up. Get your money, your product, whatever you want. BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY… dont let this ruin your hopes for weight loss. Better living matters. Eat right, exercise, and get out in the sun more. You do not need a 4 thousand dollar program. LAWL made you feel like you needed them and their products. YOU NEVER DID. They are done because the market doesn’t need them, you dont need them. Get your money, move on, and dont sign any more NON REFUNDABLE contracts!
    My best hopes and wishes for everyone.

  18. Does anyone have an update on this? I went to their website and it looks like you can sign up for an On Line weightloss program. The owner of the Charlotte on-line program area is Rick Rex. If the program is up and running again…does this mean we can get our money back from the closure in December 2008? Or at least the products we were owed?

  19. He’s finally shut down!!! I use to be an employee at the Pineville location and Desi Alexander YOU ARE RIGHT!!! We were trained to take clients’ money, PERIOD!!! The “if they cry, they will buy” method is sick and many coworkers used it and moved up in the company for doing it. Meanwhile, I was fired for not selling enough. I even asked the manager one day, “If clients didn’t like me, but I was selling a lot, would I still have my job” The answer was “yes”. And she wasn’t lying because after I didn’t meet my quota, I was out. They came up with some bs about having clients pay up front to gain their committment, please. Certain employees were allow to get consultations, while others (the darker ones) were not. And the manager even noticed it herself, apologizing for not paying enough attention to “us”.

    And to “Manager of Pineville”, you must have been one of Mr. Rex’s right hand man or mistress because management was definitely corrupted. Even some employees were brainwashed. I AM NOT SURPRISED THAT THEY CLOSED THE DOORS ON THEIR CUSTOMERS AND EMPLOYEES. They have been ripping people off for years, and have shown a ridiculous amount of favortism to certain employees.

    Desi, I experienced a similar situation with Mr. Rex being CHEAP. He complained to us about turning up the heat in the dead midst of winter. We wore heavy coats everyday because we couldn’t turn the heat up past a certain temperature. THEY SAY WHAT GOES AROUND, COMES AROUND….AND LOOK AT NOW. CLOSED!!! I feel really bad for the people who lost money and gain nothing from this. I’m glad I was fired because the company was corrupted and from day one was ALL about sales, and NOTHING about helping people. None of the counselors were certified nutritionist or medical experts. Which should’ve sent up a red flag for me, but being young and dumb straight out of college, I accepted the job anyway.

    More than likely, you wont get your money back. Kim and Karen were Richard’s right hand men. And for anyone on here defending them, must have been in on the corruption as well. And to address Mr Rex being a Christian, please. Did the definition of Christian changed over night? There is nothing Christian about continuing to sell plans to people knowing the doors will close and they will receive no refund? There is nothing Christian about forcing your employees to sell, sell, sell regardless if your clients can afford it or not. There is nothing Christian about Mr. Rex and this is another reason why this has happen to him. USING GOD as a fake identity. Other people may not see through it, but God does. I hope the BBB catches up with him. And sadly the site is still up for people to sign up. Good luck to you all.

  20. Hi ladies who are owed lots of money by LAWL – check this out – – this is one of the partners behind the massive LA Weight Loss scam in Charlotte. Kim Freel A.K.A Kim Eynard (48%) owner operator to Mr. Rick Rex is still scamming! If oyu visit her website, you can email her and ask her where your money is, as she ended up with half of it. Thought lots of you might like to have a face, name and number for your complaints =) Cheers & Good Luck!

  21. Here’s Kim’s contact details – To reserve your spot Call Kim for more info 704-315-7311 or email: kim@kimfreelconsulting.coms & LA Products which are the products all of you purchased ——> HERE’S YOUR CHANCE TO CASH IN AND GET YOUR LA LITES BACK! & She’s selling all the old LA Detox’s and everything! Really sad stuff!

    & she’s still selling LA Lites

    Here’s an exerpt from her website, not mentioning how she and Rick shut down all the LA Weightloss centers – too funny:
    ” Since 1997 Kim has worked for a national weight loss franchise. Hired as a regional supervisor, Kim was responsible for directing and overseeing all center operations. She also welcomed the responsibility of training and developing the skills of her employees as weight loss counselors.

    In 2001 Kim moved her family to Charlotte, North Carolina to continue to pursue her passion in the field of weight loss coaching. In Charlotte, Kim was largely responsible for the success of her 10 weight loss centers that helped thousands of people reach and maintain their weight loss goals. Eventually, Kim reached out to the city of Charlotte and beyond by becoming a public spokesperson for the corporation she was affiliated with. In 2005, Kim started a weekly local radio program called, “Why Weight?” which was broadcast on 1079 “The Link.” Kim’s radio program was a Saturday morning staple for people looking for guidance in their weight loss endeavors. The show was a forum for audience discussion, and sharing of personal experiences, with Kim standing by to offer motivational support and advice. Kim has helped people off all ages and backgrounds lose weight and keep it off. She believes although there are a lot of things in life we can’t control, we can control our weight. What Kim offers is education, accountability, and motivation from someone who has lived it, and has the passion to help you make the change. “

  22. Ha Ha – Here’s more from Kim —-> “I am not a doctor or dietician, but I drawing from over 13 years experience in the weight loss industry along with my own personal struggles with weight. I believe I’ve come up with a successful model and I offer advice on how I got there.” – Kim Freel

    She was the “trainer” with the “If they cry, they buy” philosophy! LOL Also, you notice on her Bio that there’s not any pics of the 100lbs she supposedly lost. Don’t worry, my co-workers and I always wondered about that too… I personally don’t believe Kim was ever 100lbs overweight nor was she just a manager-trainer, she was an owner. & Notice, there’s no mention of the National Franchise she was employed by. If she’s so proud of her history & career, why not let everyone know? Something to hide much? Please pray that this woman will not be able to dupe anyone else – I feel horrible that I ever worked for LA!

  23. Regarding Kim Freel – she lost weight doing coke when she lived in NY w/ her ex-husband and children. She was a singer in a local band and would stay out late partying until all hours. She moved to NC after her husband gave her an ultimatum about her cheating ways. She continued to cheat and do coke in NC so they got a divorce.

  24. I had pre-paid at Pure Weightloss formally LA weightloss in Saugus, MA when i went to get weighed in and found a niotice on the locked door that they had closed for good! I am out $350. I am not a wealthy person, and this was quite a setback emotionally too.

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