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Posts posted by Ludwig13

  1. I know the topic has been previously discussed, but it has been a few years and laws might have changed.


    In 2020, I was approved for US Social Security disability and received backpay for several years (all of which I have lived in Germany). As far as I know, this pay is taxable in Germany. Hopefully, because of the progressive tax rate, it will not be taxed as if it all was received in one year. I have reached out to several "Steuerberater" on this subject that supposedly are very well versed on expat taxes, but haven`t been able to find one yet willing to do the tax declaration for me.


    I appreciate any referrals or just experiences on the topic. Thank you. 


  2. I've had a very difficult time with my landlords for the three years living here. I can list the issues, but it's a mute point. Bottom line is, I've felt in the right in every situation but was always brushed off by them until they finally did fix the problems I was complaining about. Without a 100% guarantee that I could win anything against them, I chose not to battle.

    I am unable to work, my wife is the primary wage earner and we don't have the money to risk a loss. Therefore, for us, it was cheaper to pay the money then create an even more hostile environment with our landlords. 
    NO, I do not agree that we caved in to the demands and I had to discuss my frustrations to my wife, but we both decided that we would settle this as peacefully as possible and let the drama, irritation and hostility go. The camera is moved, the camera will never be in a visible position again and I have nothing to do with them unless it affects our apartment directly. As I said, there are still ongoing issues and concerns we have about things they are doing, but our voices fall on deaf ears. They will do nothing about the things they are doing for themselves at a non-monetary cost to us. (not going to discuss it here)

    We paid, it's over and I am looking forward to the day we can get moved and yes, it is in the works. We are just waiting.

    Thanks again and wow, this thread took some crazy turns at times, but it did help me with some direction and information.


  3. On 7/26/2020, 5:09:14, jeba said:

    I don´t understand on what basis the legal cost insurance refuted your claim. AFAIK if you want to fight that decision you can do so and they have to pay your lawyer doing it. That´s I would do (after making sure that my memory is right/applies to your insurance contract)  while paying the € 585.- under reservation and without acknowledgement of a legal obligation.

    Both of our insurances said that I had intentionally broken the law by having my camera in the position it was in. By assumption, they did not want to pay for representation that I would lose the case and the costs would be deferred to them. It was irresponsible for me to have the camera where it was, but there was NO intention of using the camera where it was placed. I was rather pissed at the insurance for their denial.


  4. 1 hour ago, lunaCH said:

    Legally speaking you were not obliged to pay anything to anyone until a court has dictated otherwise. 


    I understand you have since entered into a loose verbal agreement. I say loose as you agreed to pay something without knowing how much it would be. I don't know if your loose verbal agreement has now legally changed things.

    Court = €€€€€€€€€

    Money I don't have to invest win or lose. Your words are appreciated, but I can't risk losing and having to pay fees and their fees should I lose. 600 bucks, lesson learned. As ridiculous as this is, I feel extremely violated, but again, I could have moved the camera when they came bitching. I didn't do that, so I blame myself. I'm not going to play victim when I played a substantial role in it's escalation and outcome.



  5. 32 minutes ago, lunaCH said:

    You don't need to pay anything at all at this stage and you know it. :)

    uh, after my wife talked to Frau Landlord, the agreement we came to was that we would pay the attorney fees to avoid court, the 1000 blackmail-hostage fee and keep the peace between us as renters and them as our landlord. She agreed to contact her atty and withdraw the complaint and the atty sent us the bill for services provided to FL. So yes, we will pay to keep the peace, but I question the amount. If you can tell me WHY I do not have to pay and can avoid further damages as well as a court appearance, feel free to represent me or provide evidence that I in fact will not be held liable by not paying. 


  6. Update #2

    The bill from the attorney came today. The 1000 'fine' was dropped but the 5000 Gegenstandwert was still enforced and their request is we pay 1.6 of the 5000.

    Our bill is just over 585 Euros. CRAZY. My wife is going to talk to her attorney connection and see if this is reasonable or not. 

    I unprofessionally think this is an insane amount for receiving a ransom letter and then a completion letter. 
    I'll let you know how this goes. WOW....!!!


  7. 21 hours ago, john g. said:

    We will do a crowdfunding for you at Xmas for a new camera, Ludwig13!😀😂

    Oh boy, do you know how much of a tease that is?

    jk...I'm eyeing a new camera for sure. Wife reminded me this morning that the fees will have to be paid and MAYBE in the fall next year we can consider it...but that means I have to be good and that's my struggle.

    Have a good rest of the week.


  8. 1 hour ago, DaringD said:

    I also doubt this assertion since I've seen plenty of camera stores in Germany, one here in Bamberg, Fotomax in Nürnberg and many others where cameras are displayed pointing outwards in the main windows. Don't take my word for it, I found a couple of pictures, I'm also going to drop by the one in Bamberg today when I'm in town to have a look and maybe even ask them what they would do if someone complained...






    My over all German Law Spidey Senses tell me this is not going to be an issue for the shops. Gray law standards are everywhere here. I am curious about what you hear from the shop owner how he/she avoids paranoid people from coming in and raging over having a recording device pointing at them. I'm also wondering how much drama was added to my experience since I am a tenant to the offended ones? Suppose my neighbor had a decorative camera in their window, would there have been such a stink or was I singled out because I'm more easily approachable? Anyway, DaringD, fill us in on what you find out about the shops and displays. I'm very curious about their answer. Feel free to share my experience if it becomes relevant. 


  9. Final Update:

    Wife went over to talk to Frau Landlord. Of course, FL had to rant on and on about how hard it is to make a decent wage at the beer garden and every customer counts...blah blah blah. My wife was quite tolerant and let the woman rant. When all was said and done, wife asks what FL is willing to settle for or should we pursue and atty and take this to court. FL said to pay for their lawyer visit and they'll drop everything else. So, maybe 2 to 3 hundred Euros for their atty's time. 
    Meanwhile, wife's boss' attorney calls us and says, ABSOLUTELY illegal to have a camera on display, functioning or not. If a person in any way feels their privacy is being violated, they have the right to complain. I'm too old for this crap. I'll pay the bill when it comes and be done with it. 

    I'm putting this experience behind me and I want to say a HUGE THANK YOU to everyone. If I had money to burn, I would take this to court just to see what a legal stand on something like this is. Since I'm an old unemployed hobby photographer, I have to settle with what the wife says since she earns the money. 


    Now would not be the time to ask Wife for a new camera :o


  10. The landlords' attorney is asking that I pay the landlord per Überweisung the 1000. Nothing is stated as to why (damages, etc...) I would need to pay them. 


    I told the police I had no intention of photographing or videoing the scene. I told him it would be illegal. He told me, no, it's only illegal if I post the photos publicly. I told him also no, that as of May 2018 the law was written to say no photos of people are allowed without a formal permission from that person. I was interested in street photography for a long time. Once the big issue of privacy was made, I stopped taking street photos. I don't have any social media accounts and my photos are for my use only. It's a hobby and used for improvement purposes only.

    When I lived in Munich, I got a written permission to do photos of all the U-bahn stations in Munich. It was very challenging to not include people in the shots. Of course, there are some, but again, my photos are for private use. Any photo of a person who is recognizable or identifiable must have that person's permission to possess or distribute.

    I'm sticking to nature, wildlife and landscape. Don't even get me started on drone laws...aggggggggggggh


  11. My wife went over this morning to talk to them. Frau landlord said she was going to be having a busy day today and couldn't discuss anything this weekend due to business. 

    My wife is going to talk to them about what exactly they want. Frau landlord said she would have time Tuesday morning to talk and we would be taking care of the details.

    OK, that's fair with me. Their willingness to talk and find a resolve will be cheaper than a lawyer. Should they stand by their demands, then yes, we will self pay an attorney to see what our legal options are concerning the 1000 bucks and their lawyer fees. 
    Herr landlord was actually very pleasant yesterday morning when I met him while going outside. Hopefully this will blow over. Our time is short here and we will keep the peace.

    It's been a struggle, but one to one and a half years more living here is possible to endure. 
    UPDATE to follow on Tuesday.


    Thanks to everyone commenting. 




  12. 1 hour ago, lunaCH said:

     :huh: Where were these pipes exactly?

    Under cobblestones in the driveway. They replaced the pipes. 20 meters from the back of the house to the street. Our entrance is in the back of the house so we walk the driveway every day and night. The smell was horrific but now it's gone. That driveway is now for bicycle parking for their customers. Again, off topic so I'll stop there.


  13. 27 minutes ago, sanjay050284 said:

    I have a feeling that the landlord wants you out of the apartment and is looking for ways to make you feel uncomfortable. 


    It's not that they want us out, they want us to conform to what they say. It took us three years to get them to finally fix the sewer smell coming out of the rotted pipes. It took six months for them to fix the parking area. (still not that great) but anything they want from us, it has to be immediately. To avoid being off topic, I would rather not discuss all the issues. The issue at hand is the camera being visible from their property.


  14. 50 minutes ago, snowingagain said:

    Think you need to chill a bit and work out if this really important.  It seems like it would have been so easy just to move the camera on its tripod a foot away from the window or so,  if it was annoying people and making them feel they were being watched.

    True. At the time I was convinced I was doing nothing wrong. 


  15. 1 hour ago, lunaCH said:

    The screaming perhaps was. For the rest I have to disagree. Getting the Police involved is not ridiculous, it was clearly justified. Having been a victim recently of a camera being placed on our plot filming our property I know how people can feel in this situation.

    Just because you've done something for 3 years with no issues, doesn't however mean to say that it will always be alright with everyone.

    None of this has anything to do with the camera issue however. If you feel the woman is committing a criminal offence you have the possibility of reporting her. ;)

    Obviously you think your experience is a blanket summary and all things legal are black and white. Well, German law is very gray and not every incident is handled the same way. I hope you have your resolve. I am trying to get mine and I am a bit frustrated so yes, I will rant about trivial issues along with the matter at hand because I need an outlet. Feel free to leave this thread if what is being said doesn't feel good to you. 


  16. If I were a customer, a camera in this position would be the least of my worries. The woman owner meets, greets, serves and collects money all with her mask only over her mouth. She literally....and I kid not.....literally pulls her mask off her face to talk and take money. That would be my worry; a covid germ from an uncovered mouth which deals with over 100 customers/strangers a day. And yet they continue to come. Obviously a fear of privacy violation supercedes health. 

    Not really my concern because I do not patronize the place. However, one of the daughters and her husband live above us and they work over there too. We are very safe. I sanitize the door handles and wear a mask in the stairway. Too many risks.


  17. 4 minutes ago, fraufruit said:


    Is it possible that this was the cause for concern? 

    No, because the beer garden had not opened yet. Obviously pointing at a 50 degree angle UP is quite a bit different then 50 degrees downward. We are on the first floor. the beer garden is down and across. I shot down the street and into the sky. The beer garden is to my right and downward. No mistake.


  18. 31 minutes ago, Krieg said:

    They can claim whatever they want in their cease and desist, it is up to you to either accept it, to send back an altered version of the cease and desist or to ignore it and to go to court.    You most probably need a lawyer and it seems your lawyer insurance do not want to cover it.

    As soon as the letter came, I moved the camera. I'm bent because of the threats. 

    The 1000 bucks is a random number they came up with for the supposed loss of business and customer fears. I say bullshit. No one left and there was no way they lost 1000 Euros in business. 

    The fear of going to court and having to pay the winner's costs puts fear in me.

    I still have not seen an actual statute about the camera placement.

    It's being accused of something I was not doing and being threatened because of their paranoia. If I pop a hard-on at the spa,(cold water are all the women going to scream rape? It's absurd. Hopefully we can have some type of mediation without extreme costs.