My fiancee and I had our 125 person wedding planned for September 20th, 2020. However, like many others in March of this year, we found ourselves out of work (both of us are in the restaurant industry). Given that we had no indication of when w...
e would be fully employed again, or able to safely have an event of the type we were planning (and still don't as of 11/20, on either count), and also had a deposit just shy of $10k due on April 1st (on top of the $5500 we put down originally), I called JAM in the hopes of arranging an alternative.
At first, my concerns were addressed by informing me that no one else was cancelling for September, and implied I was worrying too much about at all this. I was then told in no uncertain terms (and after my contact with JAM double checked with Jeff himself), after asking about postponing into 2021, that my only two options were to either postpone within 2020 or to cancel the contract altogether and potentially forfeit my initial deposit. JAM made no representation whatsoever that we'd be entitled to any kind of refund on either deposit in the event they were not able to hold our event on the newly contracted date. Considering our own circumstances at the time and the uncertainty about a rescheduled event being safely or legally held at all in that time frame, we had no choice but terminate the contract, as laying out another $10k with no guarantee of return would have been absolutely foolhardy on our part (without having jobs and all).
I was also told that JAM would not consider any couple postponing into my now vacant date as a "re-booking" according to the contract, which would have entitled us to receiving at least $2500 of our original $5500 in the event that happened. When I pointed out that no such language was in the contract specifying that and asked what they had done in previous situations like this I was told "I don't know, this has never happened before." Essentially, this means they didn't have a policy regarding this and decided to pick one that could potentially screw over their clients and save them the most possible money.
Finally, after I had submitted a formal letter serving to cancel the contract, JAM came around and sent out a letter to all clients offering up certain (limited) dates in 2021. Their offering was for different locations in Jan thru March of 2021 or weekdays beyond that. As frustrating as that was (the idea of spending $20-40k to get married on a Tuesday isn't necessarily appealing to anyone), it's something we possibly could have worked with if not for the fact that yet again JAM made no representations about offering refunds in the event even those dates were impossible for reasons related to the ongoing pandemic. So, given their stance on the re-booking clause (which considering what everyone was going through I thought was an indefensible stance for a public facing business to take), and the fact they weren't saying a peep about potential refunds, I could only conclude JAM was content to take your money and string you along forever in postponement hell if that's what it came to.
They were looking out for themselves, which I suppose is only natural, but this is not a business I would recommend to anyone I cared about (not for an event of this magnitude and the potential dollar amounts involved, no way). As much as it still hurts to have lost the original $5500 in these times, we're absolutely thrilled we don't have $15k tied up with this company right now.