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  1. Hallo zusammen,   My Grandmother has passed away about 3 years ago a left an inheritance in the high 5 figures. My Grandmother had no will, therefore it is to be split evenly, between my Mom and her two sisters. Makes sense, right?    We were in the bank that was processing the inheritance and the documents were about to be signed to release the money when all of a sudden the oldest sister demanded that she deserves all the money because she's the oldest, and refused to sign the document. We all sat there, including the Bank Employee, dumbfounded. The Bank lady said without all 3 sisters signing the document the money could not be released. The Bank lady also mentioned that my Aunt could refuse to sign this document indefinitely and there was nothing we could do.    I was hoping to get some guidance on what the next step is. I find it hard to believe there is nothing we can do, and that my aunt can grandstand the whole thing until it's her time to go.   Danke und viele Grüße
  2. Hi there. - I was caught shoplifting a cheap bottle of alcohol (it was really stupid, and I didn’t need to), and I’m scared now of how this might affect my visa.  I’m currently in Germany on a Blue Card. Here are my questions.:   1) does shop lifting affect my ability to get a blue card renewed?   2) does shoplifting prevent me from getting residency (which I can do thru the blue card after a number of years? I’ve read that a serious crime could prevent one from getting residency, so does shop lifting count as serious?   3) I just received a letter from the police asking for more information / my statement (including economic conditions). What should i do?   At the time i was caught, I said it was a mistake and I just forgot about this one bottle. We paid for everything else. Should I just reiterate that it was a careless mistake on my part? Does saying I have a job make it harder to persecute my case?   4) if I do pay a fine for this, how long will it be in my criminal history?   thanks all.
  3. Apartment rental contract feedback

    Hello everyone!  Finally after a long and gruesome search there is some light at the end of the tunnel! (renting an apartment in Munich!) Everything has run smoothly so far, and we are at the last step, signing the contract. Now my German is good enough to hold a conversation (and communicate details) but even if I can read 90% of this, I know that the attention to details is what saves someone headaches down the line. I know I might be asking too much, but I m still going to ask Can someone with some experience tell me if something stands out for them? I tried searching for a template of this to see if it already exists out there (and with what alterations) but no luck... I was expecting to be paying 1000 warm, but it seems the Strom is not in there, and I m unclear on what it says for the Betriebskosten, so I would like to know what else might be sticking out (or an estimate of actual total cost for a 1 person - 47 square meter apartment). Thank you so much for your time! (can't upload PDFs on the forum)
  4. Legal insurance advice/recommendations?

    Starting this topic because searching here and the most relevant/recent threads are older than 5+ years. I'm looking for advice on getting rechtsschutzversicherung here in Berlin. (Suffice to say I have my reasons why I would like to have this insurance, the discussion of which is not the point of this post)   I'm a bit overwhelmed because I've looked around and cannot find any reliable way of telling if a particular service is good or not. The reviews on Check24 are not helpful because many either one sentence replies or sound either made up or written by idiots. Google reviews aren't very helpful either, and I've read plenty of contradicting information.  Additionally, I really need to find an insurance company with English speaking reps. My German is alright, but I'm not comfortable trying to understand legalese German. Even my partner who is a native German speaker gets extremely frustrated and overwhelmed trying to parse legalese auf Deutsch.  If I have an issue, I am going to have to be the one to call their help hotline, I can't put this on my partner, so it's important that I am able to understand what they advise me to do. Furthermore, I'm trying to find a place with either bilingual lawyers or freie anwaltswahl so I can find a bilingual lawyer here in Berlin.    Does anyone on TT have any recommendations or advice? I've heard a lot of anecdotal stories of people who had rechtzschultzversicherung and either they refused to cover a particular case or canceled the person's coverage immediately after a claim. It's quite daunting and a lot of places sound like trash that just take your money and don't actually protect you when it counts. 
  5. So today i have caused minor damage to a colleagues car while working a fork lift. Usually there would be no problem and insurance would cover the damage but i was asked to drive a forklift even tho i have no license for one. I have of course informed my company on this fact and they said it was no problem and since we are short handed someone needs to fill in. I was hesitant but i agreed (i understand that i should have said no). But my problem now is they are talking about me covering the damage for the accident that happened on the company grounds, with the company equipment, after i was asked to do the job and they being informed several times i had no license.  Who is responsible for covering the damage and do i have any legal recourse to refuse to pay?
  6. 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.
  7. Most often the contract demands to paint on move out, because the apartment was "just painted" before the current tenant. Does the landlord have to provide a proof of such claim? The renovation could have taken place much longer ago and just held up well. If tenant stays in the place for more than three years and there are no visible signs of wear and tear does he still have to renovate? What happens if the flat wasn't freshly renovated to begin with and didn't look like it was, but the contract claims renovating when moving out?
  8. I've rented quite a few furnished apartments in Germany and all of them had the same cleanliness issues. From what I've seen while looking for an unfurnished accommodation, flats with EBK are no different. The insides of the fridges, ovens, kitchen cabinets, microwaves are disgustingly dirty (with what most often looks like years worth of food remnants/stains).   The funny thing is the contracts for the very same furnished flats demand 100€ or more on the final cleaning (in case the tenant doesn't do the cleaning himself). And the owners are always more than meticulous to check everything up to the dust on top of the cupboards, needless to say, the insides of the kitchen are being checked as well. Is it just that if the previous tenant opted for paying there is no need to check after the hired "professional"?   I guess there is no point in arguing about the cleanliness before signing the contract, otherwise you just don't get it. (Which may contain a point that the apartment was clean when visiting it).   Are there any ways of ensuring not having to hand the apartment back in a cleaner state than it used to be? Ensuring the money paid for cleaning doesn't go straight into the landlords pocket? Or even not having to scrape the nastiness off or pay someone to do it?   The contract usually states on move out flat has to be clean or "besenrein". What does it mean after all? From this it looks like food remnants specifically must be removed. The question is whether dirt and grime (which is difficult to remove and most probably consists of food remnants) should be removed as well as possible or is it enough to also "broom" it like the floor so that there are no crumbs size of a bread heel?   On the forum I came across advice to take photos as soon as I move in. Is insisting on making an Uebergabeprotokoll on moving in possible? Will these measures be of any help? Looks like if the contract states you've seen it clean when visiting and it must be clean on handing back there is little one can do.   Success stories are most welcome.
  9. I really like commutation with bicycle. It's fun, sport, almost repair free and always ready, very efficient and low cost. In my way to work everyday, recently I started to see a phenomenon more and more frequently, making me suspicious that these cases are not accidents but a prevalent way of bullying bicycle riders by car drivers. Examples are: Riding my bycicle in bike path, hear the car engine behind me rumbling as the driver is speeding up so fast, suddenly turning to right into the bike path and blocking my way, then slowing down to force me to brake and keep driving for as slow as 1 km/h until I realize I have to turn left and bypass the car and then the driver turning on flasher and turn left to hit me in the street! So I brake again and he brakes again and keep this childish game of driving slowly in the bike path and waste my time. Another case is when the driver suddenly blocks me in the bike path and totally stops the car there. Sometimes even turns on the flasher as if the car is not working. Cases are the driver is looking for park place and is well ready to kill a human being just to reserve that park place for himself almost crushing me and my bike when rushing with 60km/h into the bike lane. Driver is waiting behind traffic light with right flasher on means he intends to turn right. I arrive and as he knows I will want to pass the cross first when the light is green and then let him turn right, moves slowly to the right corner to block the bike path altogether. Bycicles are waiting like cars for the traffic light to go green so they can pass by. Once the light is green, the first car turns half way right and stops there, blocks bikes path and waits until the light is red again. Then pushes gas and goes away fast! Driver slows down to my pace when I'm riding bicycle and then gradually moves into bike path until I have to either stop or jump into the pedestrian's or hit a tree. Car parked in bike path. Lots of cars parked in bike path. Speeding up to around 100km/h to be the first one who turns right in the cross and before my bicycle arrives In the park place and suddenly opening door in hope that it can hit me when I'm on the bicycle Glorious construction projects which "temporarily" need to use bike path for their baustelle and forever! Heartbroken lovers who drink their last bottle of bear and then break it in the bike path specially in deep snow in hope that bicycle riders will some day feel the pain they are in! And finally the millions of dear households of Berlin, a few of whom just leave their beloved but old furniture in the bike path In some case other bicycle drivers are also victim and I'm not alone. Some go on rage, insult, yell, show their middle finger or punch the car. But this nevertheless keeps happening and it is sometimes really life threatening. So, am I alone? Did you face similar situations? Do you find it a temporary relief to write about similar cases in the comments here? (If so please do) Is there any solutions/workaround/legal advice when one faces these issues? Should we leave sport at the gym and instead join others in driving car? Thanks for your time.
  10. So I've come across a few flat listings where the place and pricepoint seem to be good but the current tenant is demanding his old furniture be bought for some clearly excessive sums of up to 5000€ for some IKEA furniture and a prehistorical kitchen.   Can anyone give detail on how the process is organized?   Do the parties sign a contract which states that the candidate is obliged to buy the furniture but only in the case that he is approved as the Nachmieter by the owner? Should such contract be signed before the current tenant suggests the Nachmieter to the owner?   What happens in three months if no such contract has been signed? Does the old tenant just automatically lose the flat or he can reclaim it if the Nachmieter refuses to buy the furniture?   If any part of the contract changes, does it make the tenant a new tenant instead of a Nachmieter? How is making the new person buy furniture handled then?   In case the kitchen is being sold how to figure out it's not the one that came with the flat?   Lastly, is it considered the norm to ask for price justification e.g. receipts and items' age/origin or it is considered offensive and you can forget about getting the flat? Is it ok to bargain?
  11. Kindergeld

    Hi, We have been in reciept of a 'partial' kindergeld payment since last year. The reasons I've been given (from what I understand) are 1) because I am in reciept of child maintenance from the children's Father in England 2) that their Father can claim Child Benefit in the UK. I've been told by some local friends that this is incorrect and they should be paying the full amount. I've tried to communicate with kindergeld several times with recorded delivery letters and phone calls but I just get fed a line of rubbish like they'll write to me within ** days, or someone who is dealing with it is on holiday or no reply at all. The last letter they sent went to my steuerberater but no copy to me. I'm really fed up and struggling with money. So do I go down the legal route now or are they correct in what they have said? Does anyone know of English speaking legal help (that's not really expensive becsuse I just can't afford it) or have any other help?   Thanks, Debs