Appellate court affirms decision in support of Planet Fitness and its transgender-inclusive locker room policy



June 08, 2017

Media Relations Director
Allison McClain
amcclain@nixonpeabody.com
617-345-1128

A Michigan Court of Appeals has affirmed a decision in favor of Planet Fitness in a case regarding the fitness company’s transgender-friendly locker room policy.

Nixon Peabody’s legal team, led by Franchise Litigation partner Arthur Pressman and associate Troy Lieberman, first secured a victory for client Pla-Fit Franchise LLC (PF Corporate) in 2016 in the 42nd Circuit Court for the County of Midland (MI). The parent company and a Planet Fitness franchisee had sought the dismissal of a lawsuit attacking the company’s transgender-friendly locker room policy. A Michigan woman alleged Planet Fitness’s “Judgment Free Zone policy®” (which allows members to use the locker room of the gender they self-identify with) invaded her privacy, violated her civil rights, and constituted consumer protection violations, among other claims. Circuit Court Judge Michael J. Beale found the lawsuit not legally sufficient to continue and dismissed the complaint in its entirety. That dismissal was just affirmed by the Michigan Court of Appeals on June 1, 2017 (which also coincides with the beginning of Pride Month).

“We are pleased to secure another great decision in this cutting-edge litigation on behalf of our client, Planet Fitness,” said Arthur Pressman, Nixon Peabody partner. “We proudly stand beside Planet Fitness who ‘walks the walk’ for equality.” With more than 1,300 fitness centers in 48 states and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Canada and the Dominican Republic, Planet Fitness’s mission is to create a “Judgement Free Zone®” workout environment for all.

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