COVID19 Question and Answers for LinksGateway Clients
Posted by Lisa Turvey, Last modified by Maddison Mitchell on 29 April 2020 02:37 PM

COVID19 LinksGateway Questions and Answers


  • Why was 10% of our payouts held back last week (week ending 27 March)?

Given that membership fees are charged in advance, a portion of the fees we paid out during last week (week ending 27 March) were for services you may not be able to deliver for the time being.

And according to the ACCC website, you’re prohibited under Australian Consumer Law from taking payments for services when there are reasonable grounds to believe the services won’t be supplied.

This means that members may be entitled to a refund on fees already paid or, alternatively, they could request a chargeback down the track.

In normal circumstances, we would simply deduct chargebacks from the next payout. However, given that we don’t know when your next payout will be, we need to hold back 10% of the funds currently held to ensure that we can pay any potential chargebacks that may occur.

  • Will we eventually receive the 10% that has been held back?

The amount received will vary on a case by case basis. In other words, if your gym receives no chargebacks, you will get the full amount back. If there are chargebacks, these will be deducted from the 10% held and you will receive the residual amount left over. 

Debitsuccess will continue to monitor your gym’s chargebacks over the coming weeks and months. Once we have a clearer idea of how many chargebacks your members are claiming, we’ll be in a better position to tell you exactly how much you can expect to receive back and when you will receive this.

  • If we continue to run debits as we are providing a service, will 10% be held every time?

Debitsuccess reserves the right to hold back funds from future payouts in the event that the chargeback risk increases.


  • Can we charge suspension or freeze fees?

No, you must act in accordance with the guidelines on the ACCC website. You are unable to charge these fees during the time that your business is closed. However, you will be able to charge these fees  if you are continuing to provide a service and your members ‘opt in’ to being charged such fees.

  • Can we continue to charge membership fees while our business is closed?

Yes, you can. However, your members must ‘opt in’ before you can continue charging them. They need to do this via email.   

Without their express written permission, you are not permitted to charge membership fees.

  • Can we ask our members to ‘opt out’ instead of ‘opt in’?

No. This is because your members are receiving a different service to what they initially signed up for. And they must formally agree to this new service and its related fees.

  • Is a verbal ‘opt-in’ enough?

No, your members must ‘opt in’ via email.

This process is no different to the one you have always followed when signing up new members to your gym. It protects your business should a member change their mind or claim they never agreed to be charged.

  • How do our members opt in for us to continue charging them?

You’ll need to send an email to your members asking them to respond if they are happy with the new service and related fee.

Please ask your member to use the following wording in their email response:

Same fee

I agree for you to continue deducting the current amounts being deducted at the current frequency, using my existing direct debit authority.

Reduced fee

I agree to a variation to my existing direct debit authority and authorise you to deduct [$X] from my account amount per [week/fortnight/month] for the service described above.

  • What do we do once we receive an ‘opt in’ email from our members?

These are the only members you can include in your debit runs you process in Links and you must only charge the member the fee stipulated in the email at the agreed frequency.

Please email to confirm that you intend to process debit runs for these members and provide a list of the relevant members. Please attach a copy of the following to the email to validate your authority to debit: copy of the email sent to members, an example of an opt in from a member evidencing an understanding of the reason why they are debiting. e.g. overdues and penalty fees, and/or virtual coaching, etc.

  • Can we continue collecting overdue membership fees that were due before 23 March?

Yes. This is the default position for all our clients (unless you have arrived at a different arrangement with your Account Manager).

  • Will you be holding back a percentage of future payouts?

We will continue to monitor chargebacks and we will be in contact with you to discuss options in the event the chargeback risk increases.


  • If a member cancels and is out of contract, can we take 30 days payment in line with their membership agreement?

No. As the gym is closed, the member has no option to visit the gym during that period.

  • Can we charge a one-off cancellation fee and cancel the member straight away?  

Yes – but only if the terms and conditions in your membership agreement cater for this.


  • We provide outdoor training to one person at a time. Can we continue to charge our members?

Yes, however we need to see evidence that you are training people one at a time, outdoors.

Please send your Account Manager a screenshot from your website or Facebook page to confirm this is the case, and follow the ‘opt-in’ instructions above. Once we receive this, you can run your debits in Links, and Debitsuccess will process the LinksGateway debit batches.

  • What happens if the government prohibits outdoor PT or bootcamps in the future?

Links and Debitsuccess will follow the same procedures we have already followed for other businesses. This means:

  • You must put all Customers on suspension in Links with no suspension fees charged.
  • We will withhold 10% on the last payout to account for possible chargebacks in the future
  • You are not permitted to charge any freeze or suspension fees
  • Your members will need to opt in (via email) before you can continue charging any fees


  • Are the Links Account Managers still working?

Yes. They’re all working from home and responding to emails & calls as fast as they can. We appreciate and thank you for your patience during this especially busy period.

  • Is the Links Helpdesk still operating?

Yes. Our helpdesk team members are all also operating from home. The phone lines remain open from 9am -5pm AEDT Monday to Friday.  

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