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  1. Pfändung notice from Bank

    Hello All,   I'm an Expat here at Cologne and I'm working here for almost 2 years. A few days back I got a letter from the bank and it states it is a Pfändung and I owe some couple (Bonn) almost about 3000 euros, and if in case I fail to pay them, my bank account would be frozen.   I'm really surprised by this letter as I do not even know these couple and I have never been to Bonn. I called the Bank and they said they can't help me as the order is from the court. I also did not receive any bills or any mail regarding this matter and the bank said there are no details on why I owe those couple that sum of money.   This is causing me stress and mental harassment. I cannot focus on my work. Kindly let me know what options do I have here and the way forward.   Regards, Lorong
  2. Hello Forum Members,   I recently rented a caravan from a private person for a 2 week vacation. I paid the agreed rental amount in advance but no deposit. On the day of the pick-up of the caravan the owner proposed making an contract that, if i don't return the caravan by  a certain date(, I will have to buy the Caravan for few thousand euros.    When we used the caravan, one hinge of the 2 cupboards broke the other hinges were still fine. We taped them and used as we were on vacation. When we returned the caravan we showed that the broken hinges and mentioned we have taped them and they need to be fixed. Owner was ok he said its fine and thanks for binging it to his notice...etc Later we wrote(saying its returned on a certain date) on the same contract and got it signed by us and the owner.    Two days after returning, the owner claimed that there is a external damage and some other inner damage. The external damage was existing when we rented out the caravan. We mentioned to him that it was already existing well before and the additional inner damage was very minor and was at place which we never used(one draw that was dirty...therefore we never used it). We also replied saying the internal hinge damage was already shown to him and we had no clue of the draw as we never used it. The dialogue continued for a week with him claiming there is a picture of the external part before we rented the caravan. He never sent the picture. I did some digging into the chat and shared files, i found the picture of the caravan well before renting which slightly indicates the external damage was existing.   Eventually after few more days, the owner claimed the total cost of the repair including everything is more than 350 and asked us to pay 130 after which he will not claim anything from us.  We mentioned again that external damage was existing(we also sent the pictures and showed his own picture before renting that indicates slightly the damage exists). We also mentioned the internal damage is expected as its a old and not well maintained caravan. Also we mentioned that when we showed the internal hinge damage for which he was ok and didn't say anything. Eventually we communicated that we don't owe him anything. The damage because of wear and tear is expected and is owners responsibility and external damage was anyway there and not caused by us.   Now, he threatens to take legal action, if i don't pay him as he will use my details and send legal notice. I don't want to pay as the external damage was not because of our use and the hinges cost about 5-10 euros to replace but in my opinion its completely because they are old and not maintained. What should we do?   Does he have a good ground to take legal action?  If he sends a legal notice, how should i counter? Do i need a lawyer to respond? Which court takes up such cases?   Thanks...      
  3. wallpaper damage in bathroom

    Hey,  Maybe someone here can help me with a bit of advice.    So, I moved into an apartment in Berlin about 4 years ago. Since the last six odd months, the wallpaper in the bathroom is coming off. Also, a bit in the kitchen. There could be risk of mould formation and I would like to re-do the wallpapers or better paint the walls.    I wrote to the landlords, and they sent a company to inspect. The company said that the walls are not damp and that the wallpaper damage is due to poor ventilation. The company also said that there should not be wallpaper in the bathroom in the first place. They said wallpapers are not best at repelling moisture and over time they would come off.    The owner wrote back to me saying that as the wallpaper damage is due to poor ventilation it should be re-done by the tenant.  It is important to note that the wallpapers are only coming off in the bathroom and slightly in the kitchen, the only two places where there is more moisture. All other rooms have no problem.    My argument is that the owners should pay it because they should never have put wallpapers in the bathroom in the first place. It is natural that they would come off.    My questions are who should pay of this?  If the owner refuses to pay, do I have a legal case? Also, should the wallpaper be applied again, or these rooms be painted by water repellent paint?    Thanks a lot!      
  4. Hi guys!   I've decided that I want to change something in my life, travel a bit and then look for another job in or away from Germany.   For that matter, I quit my job, and from the 31st of July I will officially be unemployed.   In my contract, I have a non-competence clause, forbidding me to work for a direct or an indirect competitor of my previous company. Fair enough bout it. There is also a clause in my contract, which I found that it's actually referring to the "Waiting allowance" / Karenzentschädigung term in the German law, in essence obligating my former company to pay me 50% of my brutto salary for the term of the non-competence clause (one year). Because I'm the first one to ask about this clause in my contract, HR had no idea about it, and after a pretty long wait (half a month) I got few answers.   My main question was about the reduction of the Karenzentschädigung if I get employed in another field of work altogether. This is a relevant document that I found online:   Page 3 shows a hint of my question.   The response from HR included this:   Deduction of otherwise earning * The otherwise earning only has to be deducted insofar as your earnings are together more then (old brutto sallary + 10%)€ p.m. (110%),  incl. waiting allowance * You have to provide complete information about the otherwise earning to <EX COMPANY> (e.g. pay slip, employment contract) * You have to seriously look for a new job/earning and prove to <EX COMPANY> these efforts (e.g. covering letters, rejection letters) * Please note that if you do not make these efforts <EX COMPANY> reserves the right to stop the payment of the waiting allowance   I'm a little puzzled by these answers. HR knows that I might end up somewhere away from Germany, and based on the above document, that percentage floor should increase to 125%. Is this true? Also, can someone point me to where are the third and fourth points mentioned in the German law which is responsible for the waiting allowance / Karenzentschädigung ?   Cheers!
  5. Hi   I've had a good look through the forums here and have seen a lot of posts about Waldorf Frommer but I couldn't really see any that are exactly the same. My friend received this letter recently (attached). She has previously received other letters from WF but has ignored them and since she's been out of the country for a year she didn't see a letter about going to court. From my understanding it seems like they've taken the case to court and it's been decided on, but I'm not sure if that's true. The part which is worrying is the "die gerechtliche Auseinandersetzung wurde abgeschlossen".   Can anyone advise on if and how we should respond? If she ignores this letter will it become a criminal case or will they forcefully take the money from her account? It's got us both really worried. Is this just further scare tactics?   If I'm posting this in the wrong area please let me know, I'm new to the forum.    Thanks, John.
  6. I am really hoping to find someone that can help me out... It is a long story. late 2017 - I bought a house. It is a house Hefte. It was built in 1996. The house is in a small village within Wassenberg. I bought it from the first person to live there (it seems to me that that person originally rented the place and later bought it). The family that built both Heftes are famous in the village. They have many properties, and also went bankrupt a couple of times. The other Hefte is a zwei-wohnung - both wohnung's are rented it out. The Doppelhaus was built on a single plot that was split in half.   After moving into the house, I discovered that inside a cabinet in my basement was: My water and the neighbour's water supply and meters! In another box I found that there are also the neighbor's electricity meters. The telephone connection for the neighbor is also in my house.   Honestly, for a couple of months I did not think much about it, and assumed that it was just the electricity company that has to check the meters at the same time they check mine.   Then, in 2018, the neighboring water pipe had a minor leak, and it took some time to make sure I was not charged for the repair. The "owner" (there is a twist to come) organized for the repair, gave my personal contact details to a new plumber without my permission. They made the repair and installed a horrendously big new water filter too (I can no longer close the cabinet).   After this event, I said to the lady "we need to have a meeting to discuss how to manage these things". That lady said "why? What's the big deal?" later in this conversation it emerged that: a. Her son is the new legal owner b. My house's Abwasser passed under their Einfhart   The Abwasser was another new surprise -because the documents that came with my house from the previous owner showed that the architect's plan was for 2 separate water connections... Then I required an electrician to work on my wiring for the kitchen, and 2 electricians freaked out at the 2 meters and mix of wires in my house. At this time I contacted the city to confirm what is the official Abwasser registration - they said "we cannot find any document" From here I had a phone consult with my the legal support our company provides and later I also got the second opinion from my legal insurance. Their conclusion was: Since the water/electricity/telephone are not listed in my Grundbuch and not in my Kaufvertrag, I do not need to tolerate them. They said the Abwasser has to be tolerated by them since it is only permissible to make a shared connection if approved by the city and listed in the Grundbuch at the time of approving the connection.    So I engaged a young seemingly enthusiastic lawyer (with legal-insurance payment). That lawyer sent a letter to the son. The son responded claiming that we must remove our Abwasser if we want the rest removed... because "his parents had agreed with the previous owners". Then in a phone call between our lawyers, they offered to "keep the Abwasser and we pay half THEIR cost to move the meters". My lawyer felt it was a good deal. But I rejected it because: 1. We are the ones suffering, while they benefit from receiving rent of the tenants. 2. We are disturbed multiple times a year by their tenants to check the meter, or to close the water supply each time a family moves in / out and they install new kitchens. 3. Our shared Abwasser is a DIN100 pipe (which I am told is small for a 10 people). Also their pipe is straight to the street, whereas mine has many near-90degree bends to get there.    We asked the city hall for a quote to make our own Abwasser connection. The city guy came, checked, then made an appointment with "company A" (the only approved company for laying new street connections). I got a quote for around 9k... it was more than I expected, but thought to myself "fuck it". I also forwarded the Angebot to the city hall, and asked them "is this all costs including the connection?" They said, "das Angebot ist für den kompletten Hausanschluss inklusiv der Anschlusskosten." (I got the email).    So I told my lawyer "please tell them we do not accept and will make our own connectin too".    Then, in parallel we contacted Company A to confirm some details: a) When can they start? Duration? c) Any chance to improve the price? d) Cost for contracting them only for the street and not my Einfart. (Reason being: I actually remade the Einfhart in 2018 with a very competent company and would prefer that they do it).    The boss from company A came to my house, and started to say "Schwerig, bla bla". 5 months pass, and the city hall guy + the boss of Company A came again and started to say "we forgot to include the streeth work costs". I was like WTF? Got a new quote for 12k + company A was being very nervous about doing it. In addition, on this ocassion, the city hall guy found a plan drawing. The drawing seems to be dated 5 days after the one I have. But instead of 2 separate connections it does show 1 connection HOWEVER the drawing shows the 1 waste water connection on my side. So both drawings do not match reality at all. Furthermore, in the newly emerged drawing, the Regenwasser of my Hefte is connected to the neighbour's and dumped in their garden. (original plan is 2 separate connections dumped in each garden). So company A was saying "and if we have to play with rain water it is going to be over 12k".    My wife and I are feeling frustrated because the costs are increasing and the way the price suddenly jumped up (the Angebot has same positions, just quantity of sand, stones, etc increased) - is very suspicious. It feels like after we informed the neighbour to move things, that they did some agreement to raise the price to scare me. It sucks that city hall (again tiny hall) seems to have no ownership for saying it was including all and now does not. We are unable to get a quote from any other company since only company A is allowed.    Until today my lawyer has not checked or informed me if the Abwasser is registered in their Grundbuch (his very low motivation attitude and lack of response to my emails make me feel he has discovered a conflict of interest - because again the neighbour's family does many contructions in this area of Heinsberg... they even have a street named after them). We had set a deadline till July to move things.    So out of the blue I got this email from my current Lawyer: Laywer hat mit "son" telefoniert. Er setzt unsere Forderung bzw. seinen Teil bis Ende des Monats um. Die Handwerker sind beauftragt. Er bitte um kurzfristige Mitteilung, ob wir unseren Teil in den nächsten Wochen umsetzen werden oder wir doch auf seinen Vergleichsvorschlag von Dezember 2020 eingehen und uns an seinen Kosten beteiligen. (this feels like BS because the mother told my friend that they cannot find anyone to do the work yet).    We consulted without using legal insurance a 2nd lawyer who is a specialist in construction (unlike my current lawyer). They said we are totally the victims, but they said "it is nicer if you find a way to share costs without lawyers". I do not understand why we must suffer.    Personally I wish to: Confirm if Abwasser is registered in their Grundbuch (It could be the price went from 9k to 12k because it is not a "first connection" but rather as an "additional connection". So if it is in the Grundbuch, I wish for a lawyer to tell the son "since we have disocvered that it is registered, we want them to pay the difference of 3k to remove the burden from their house" (at the very least, company A will be motivated to keep the price fair". If it is not registered, I wish to sue the mother for the full 12k since they constructed the house in a non-compliant manner.    Is there a lawyer in NRW willing to help me with this case?    My wife and I have been suffering from a lot of stress with this story as it has been going on for years (each time the Angebot process or lawyer's reactions took like 4-6 months). We are continuously being asked for meter readings, etc. (And it is always some new tenant that comes to ask for the reading, not even the owner... we feel so exposed to lack of privacy, notice, etc). Also, since the main water connection is shared and then split off, we cannot close off our water if we go on long vacations (before COVID, my family was going to be expatriated to Japan, and we were worried on what to do with this situation". Also the pipes run through the middle of our property - so if their pipe leaked, it would indeed leak into my house...    Thanks and sorry for the very long post...
  7. Staatsanwaltschaft legal support

    Hi all,   I was in Hamburg for a work event a couple of years ago, and since then every time I returned passport control took me aside and said the the police were looking for me and I needed to provide an address. I did this 3 times but never received a letter, and finally was able to get the passport control to give me reference number to call them with.   I had a German friend call and there is apparently some accusation with the Staatsanwaltschaft, but they would not divulge any details due to data protection. They again said they need me to call with an address for them to contact me through, but this has now been over 2 years of me providing that without receiving anything from them, and I really want to get this sorted.   Does anyone know of a bilingual legal support firm who might be able to help me with this? I did live in Germany for a few years and am very wary of making any moves without legal support to defend myself from whatever has been said against me.    Really appreciate any suggestions as this is really stressing me out.