What happens after the debt collector emails?

Elrize Posts: 2 ✭✭

[TL;DR]: I got auto-renewed by TV, and they decided that I owe them money for the upcoming year, even though I don't want to use their service anymore. I got messages from the debt collectors. Should I be worried? I live in a different country than where they are from. I don't really want to pay them for a service I don't want.]

So like thousands of people on the internet, I'm one of the sorry sods that got caught by TV's auto renewal scam. I didn't want to renew the subscription, didn't read the fine print, and mistakenly thought I could just not pay for a new one like literally every other subscription service I've ever used. The debit order didn't go through. I started getting emails from the debt collectors a while ago, and they're piling up their own costs (which by now has almost doubled the amount owing... for sending a few bloody emails).

I've read through SO MANY forums, articles and posts where people talk about this predatory method; although there's little to no follow-up on what the actual end results are. A lot of speculation, and then like 2 comments saying they give up eventually on pursuing you, but little else.

The debt collectors are from Germany, I live in South Africa and have no international business/ accounts. I want to know what the actual risk is of ignoring them, if there is any bite to their bark, and what people's actual experiences were after dealing with the debt collectors. I know most people just pay them because they're scared by their tactics.

That said, I've done some reading and their EULA seems to be illegal in Germany (auto-renewal/ evergreen contracts are not legal there since recently it seems?), and in my own country you can only renew on a month-to-month basis.

- Can their debt collectors actually sue you? Are there cases where they did?

- Can they register the debt so that it reflects on your credit record? Does the fact that they're in a different country affect that?

I'm registered as a single, personal user, not as a business.

Please share if you've had to deal with them! I would appreciate any input.