Debt Collection Service Newsletter 11/2007
- Newly designed Zyklop Homepage
- Attention: limitation is imminent!
- Claiming rental arrears
- Fraud procedure against debt collecting team Moscow
1. Newly designed Zyklop Homepage
Zyklop Inkasso has completely redesigned its Homepage. A modern and contemporary design, a clear structure and useful functions were combined into a striking *Look and Feel" combination. The debt collecting dictionary was completely revised and brought updated. The list of lawyers was also amended and updated. Here you will find 69 lawyers from all Federal states whom you can approach in confidence, if required.
Not until we have received full payment of the claims made by us, do we inform Schufa (German Credit Registration Bureau) that the case has been finalized. This information is then stored for another 3 years after which it is being deleted completely.
2. Attention: limitation is imminent!
Every year, on the 31st of December, millions worth of claims are being lost in Germany. Often this is cased by the fact that companies are not familiar with the applicable statute of limitations. Also, may creditors do not yet have a professional debtor management and they delay initiating reminder procedures until the limitation period has expired.
The period of limitation applicable to most claims is three years. The period starts at the end of the year in which the claim has to be paid. That is why invoices of 2004 in particular are about to expire at the end of 2007. However, this can be prevented by a stay of proceedings owing to the service of a judicial reminder order or the start of negotiations between the creditor and debtor. If the debtor acknowledges the claim the period of limitation commences again. Out of court reminders do not prevent a commencement of the period of limitation. Since there are also, apart from the three-year limitation period, other special short and long term periods one should always consult an expert in a case of doubt.
Zyklop Inkasso therefore recommends, particularly in the case of such limitations, to take these into consideration and act accordingly: in order to stay a period of limitation by means of a judicial reminder it is necessary to serve it on the debtor in time. However, this can cause a problem of the debtor has moved or if the exact name of the company is not known. Subsequent research can take up time – and the claim expires faster than you might think. That is why creditors with regard to claims that expire at the end of the year have to initiate a debt collecting procedure immediately. The longer you wait the greater the risk that you can no longer prevent expiry of the period of limitation.
An overview of limitation periods can be found on Zyklop’s Homepage under http://www.zyklop.de/en/service/ under the heading "Service"
3. Claiming rental arrears
Claiming rental arrears is subject to a normal limitation period of three years (see above).
Things are different in respect of claims by the landlord once the tenant has left: these are subject to a limitation period of six months following the return of the rented property, § 548 BGB.
Another special ruling applies when settling running costs: the tenant needs to be informed of these before the end of the twelfth month following the date of settlement. Once this period has expired you are no longer entitled to these claims, § 556 BGB.
4. Fraud procedure against Debt Collecting Team Moscow
According to press releases the Celle Prosecuting Office is conducting a fraud investigation against the debt collecting team Moscow (ITM). The charge: fraud regarding its own customers. The company was said to have accepted a large number of orders without having the required number of employees to deal properly with all the necessary files.
Following numerous eye-catching reports in the press and on TV repeatedly depicting a Group of males dressed in black pretending to be potential life-savers, an interesting article in this respect was published by the Stern magazine, issue 41/2007. It made reference to improper activities and contradictions involving this "Company". For instance, ITM boss Werner Hoyer himself is in a state of insolvency (our newsletter 6/04 refers). The then legal counsel of the debt collecting team Moscow, Olaf Pfalzgraf, a shareholder of ITM, also had to return his lawyers registration certificate in July 2006.
Read more about this subject in the Stern magazine under When the Russians shut up shop.
Zyklop Inkasso Deutschland GmbH
Ass. jur. Frank Gallep