Beware of gewerbeauskunft-zentrale.de

17 posts in this topic

Posted

There are various and numerous people/firms that have caught on to the profitability of this scam over the past years - and no, I don't hesitate to use the word "scam". You get a very official-looking letter that suggests you are obliged to respond, by confirming/correcting the address details they have listed for you. Others manage to insinuate that you need to purchase a certificate of something or other, and post it in your place of business. This second scam works particularly well in ethnic food stores/Imbiss/restaurants.

The fine print is the killer, you will get a bill for anything from 400 - 900 Euros if you respond, and are tied into an automatically renewing yearly contract.

As we've had to do several changes of our GmbH over the last year, we've gotten letters from at least 10 different firms using this method, for every change. Before you do anything, check the sender, and then check the fine print. They normally note the amount you will be billed in the fine print. Any truly "official" letters that you do need to respond to will have no fine print, but will show the costs up front as a normal invoice, and will be from the Amtsgericht or similar.

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Posted

I faxed the cover letter back after scrawling a request for the owner of the firm to do something anatomically impossible across it. No reminder, court order or other follow up since. Very important: Don't sign the request. No signature, no contract.

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Posted

Those scams have been going on for ages. Usually entries/changes in the companies house or new entries in the Vereinsregister get a letter. The various real registries are aware of those scams and have added warnings to their official letters. The scammers have added slightly different warnings themselves now to appear official and to suggest that theirs is the one and only proper bill.

official warning:

Hinweis:

In letzter Zeit werden nach der Bekanntmachung von Handelsregistereintragungen die betroffenen Kaufleute und Gesellschaften häufig von verschiedenen privaten Anbietern (Verlage, Werbedienste, Datenbanken) aufgefordert, Veröffentlichungsauslagen zu zahlen. Daneben werden den Kaufleuten und Gesellschaften kostenpflichtige Eintragungsofferten für private Adress- oder Gewerbeverzeichnisse übersandt, bei denen die Rechnungen meist einer echten Gerichtskostenrechnung nachempfunden sind und zum Teil Anzeigenauszüge enthalten, welche über eine erfolgte Handelsregistereintragung informieren.

Die Rechnungen und Zahlungsaufforderungen sind zwischenzeitlich auch oft mit einem Warnhinweis versehen, der dem verwendeten gerichtlichen Warnhinweis zur Bekämpfung solcher privaten Angebote, nachempfunden ist.

Es wird ausdrücklich darauf hingewiesen, dass die vom Gericht beauftragten Bekanntmachungsorgane allein mit dem Gericht abrechnen und sich nicht an die betroffenen Kaufleute und Gesellschaften wenden!

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Posted

They had a case like that on TV about a week ago. This show: http://www.rtl.de/cms/sendungen/real-life/real_life/christopher-posch.html The lady had signed the agreement without reading the small print and he managed to get her out of it.

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Posted

I had an email the other week, telling me that some official sounding company had received bad feedback about my business (which is interesting because I don't have a business). I could see this report - if I signed up to their service for €400 a year!

On the TV programme I saw something similar a few years back in the UK. In that case I think it was a holiday that was on offer. Amazing how people's critical facilities desert them if they think they may get something for nothing!

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Posted

This seems quite common in Germany. My business partner and I, opened an limited edition, artist designed watch brand and received tons of these invoices/offers in the mail. Once you open your business, it becomes public info and they'll try everything in the book to suck money out of you.

When you go to open a business only pay what your notar says is a requirement! His bill, and the one bill you need to pay to the state, which for our UG it was 150€. If you attempt to open a bank account in your business name, they'll need this confirmation paper work as well, so it's legitimate.

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Posted

gewerbeauskunft-zentrale.de sent me one of their astoundingly

official looking forms recently.

What a con!

Even down to the envelope, which looks just like a "Finanzamt" one.

A case for the WPB.

I'll bet it works often enough though.

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Posted

gewerbeauskunft-zentrale.de are a load of crooks - sent me a cheeky "reminder"!

More waste paper.

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Posted

Thanks for posting this most useful info. I got his form yesterday and really thought it was required by some "amt".

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Posted

I'm so glad I came across this and john.g's post on the spam thread as I received a letter from them just last week which had me worried.

Good old TT coming up trumps again!

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Posted

..and being a German company - it´s a two year contract, Tap :D !!!

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Posted

I have a crazy idea how to teach this guy a lesson as he will only think twice it it hurts him in his pocket.

He will keep doing it as long as he makes money from this scam. Since he covers the cost of the fax through an expensive toll free number we should all sent a couple of blank pages to the guy.

To ensure he has high bills for taking the mickey out of people we need to be lot of people doing this!

What do you think? Flashmob his fax... :ph34r:

Just an idea. Anyone liking this idea?

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Posted

Just looking at the letter, aprilfool..amazing...Rückantwort gebührenfrei per Fax bis 06.03.2013! 0800-3552222. No charges for faxing him till 06.03.2013!!! What a bastard!

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