Scam invoices are unfortunately an increasingly common phenomenon that today affects many innocent individuals and businesses. What do you really do if you get a fake invoice? We have summarized in this article How to proceed if you have been affected by a scam invoice.
What is a scam invoice?
It is usually said that the definition of a scam invoice is an invoice without a legal basis. By that is meant there is no agreement around the invoice. It may also be that there is an agreement on the invoice, but that it arose from one partner being misled and deceived into agreements.
Dispute a scam invoice
The dispute of an invoice is made by sending a message to the sender by mail a fax in which you clearly write that you dispute payment responsibility, as well as a brief explanation of why. See examples below.
- ”I dispute liability because the invoice does not match the agreement”
- “I object to liability for being misled”
- ”I dispute payment contracts because we have not ordered these goods/services”
Remember that it is important to be able to prove afterwards that you have disputed the invoice. One tip is to print / take a copy of your dispute and ask a witness to sign and certify that a dispute has been sent away. Note the date of your dispute and save all form of evidence and documentation such as receipt of mail sent etc.
How do I handle payment reminders from a scam company?
If you receive payment reminders from the same sender regarding an invoice that you already contested, you do not need to do anything. However, if you receive a reminder from a collection company or the enforcement officer, you should directly repeat the dispute to the enforcement officer in the same way as before and refer to the previous dispute. Explain the background to the dispute so that you do not happen to have the claim established as a liability.
It is unusual that the scam company takes the invoice to the bailiff but if they do, the bailiff will close the case if it is so that you previously contested the invoice. The bailiff then refers the scam company to court to get through their scam invoice, which usually leads them to silence and stop sending reminders.
To continue to send reminders or debt collection requirements to a party that has factually contested an invoice is actually contrary to the collection Act and therefore you can also report to the data protection authority if you receive reminders or similar after a dispute is made. Also, do not forget that you can file a police report on the crime itself.