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Old 03.07.2020, 14:12
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Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

Hi All,

I was unfortunate enough to receive a betreibung from a small company in 2018. It was an honest mistake and I paid it in full. The betreibung is however still on the Betreibung extract and just looks nasty. I know the process to have it removed, send a letter to the company asking them to agree to remove the collection proceedings, send to the Betreibungsamt, pay 5CHF or whatever the fee is and bam, it is removed. I have gone through the procedure once before.

However, not with this specific company. I have sent them the letter to sign via registered post as well as by email. They have used every excuse under the sun not to sign the dam letter. Aparently the boss is out of the country, not returning anytime soon and no one else has signing authority that is in the country. I have asked the Betreibungsamt, who is extremely helpful and they have said that anyone that works for the company can sign/stamp the letter, but again, whoever is answering emails refuses. I have asked for a contact or email for the boss, but again, they refuse to give this to me.

The entire situation feels suspicious and after some digging, I have noted that on 17.03.2020, the company was deleted from the Swiss companies register with the following reason: 'The sole proprietorship is deleted at the request of the owner due to the lack of the legal requirements for registration.'

No following this I have 2 major questions:

1. How the hell am I going to get this Betreibung deleted, there must be some way other than waiting for this ghost boss of a seamingly deleted business to return to a company that still seems to be running perfectly fine without him?

2. The company seems to be functioning and running perfectly fine to this day, without a boss and without being registered. I am no expert on companies, but surely this is almost impossible and illegal and they are hiding something and that is why no one refuses to sign my simple letter?

I have been able to find the name of the owner, but I am still trying to trace him down personally, which is proving extremely difficult. The betreibung is all of 250CHF.

Any thoughts/ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
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Old 03.07.2020, 14:17
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

1. You have no right that it gets deleted. It is just goodwill. But it goes away on its own after 5 years.

2. If the company is not registered than it is an Einzelfirma and the owner must be named in the company name. You can very easily send a registered letter directly to the owner. Just use the known company address.
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Old 03.07.2020, 14:20
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

I fully understand they have no oblgation to remove it, it just seemed odd all the excuses and time they have wasted saying no.

It seemed further odd that they are running a business with absolutely no boss. I forgot to mention this has been going on since February, so they are into month 4 without a boss in the country.

I know the name already, I just do not know how to contact him and sending a letter won't help as he is supposedly 'out of the country'.
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Old 03.07.2020, 14:24
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

Having had another look at Zefix.ch, I see the following information:
- The owners name is in the name of the company
- status: deleted
- legal form: sole proprietorship

So to me, it seems as though the sole proprietorship has also been deleted, perhaps I am reading this wrong?
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Old 03.07.2020, 14:26
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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I fully understand they have no oblgation to remove it, it just seemed odd all the excuses and time they have wasted saying no.

It seemed further odd that they are running a business with absolutely no boss. I forgot to mention this has been going on since February, so they are into month 4 without a boss in the country.

I know the name already, I just do not know how to contact him and sending a letter won't help as he is supposedly 'out of the country'.
Send a letter anyway, he might actually be in the country and pretending not to be.
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Old 03.07.2020, 14:28
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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Send a letter anyway, he might actually be in the country and pretending not to be.
Can the employee that is answering his emails not also sign for the registered letter and then I would still never know if he received it or not?
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Old 03.07.2020, 14:35
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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I fully understand they have no oblgation to remove it, it just seemed odd all the excuses and time they have wasted saying no.

It seemed further odd that they are running a business with absolutely no boss. I forgot to mention this has been going on since February, so they are into month 4 without a boss in the country.

I know the name already, I just do not know how to contact him and sending a letter won't help as he is supposedly 'out of the country'.
I had the same problem once with a much bigger company. Stupidly I paid the Interim Justicia fees too... never again.

The Betreibung stays on your record for 5 years but if it is small and easily explained then you will be fine. It's just annoying and leaves a very sour taste in your mouth.
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:09
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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Can the employee that is answering his emails not also sign for the registered letter and then I would still never know if he received it or not?
If they can sign to receive an letter address to the owner then they have power of attorney and can sign for other things as well. But as said, it does not help much, as the most simple excuse they could use is: It is not our usual business practice to remove a debt register record. Or even simpler: Silently acknowledge the letter, file it in the "round binder", and carry on as usual.
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:11
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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Having had another look at Zefix.ch, I see the following information:
- The owners name is in the name of the company
- status: deleted
- legal form: sole proprietorship

So to me, it seems as though the sole proprietorship has also been deleted, perhaps I am reading this wrong?
No.Only the entry has been deleted. Up to a turnover of CHF 100k an entry is optional for sole proprietorship. It also means the turnover is less than 100k which would give room for just one full time employee at best.
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:16
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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No.Only the entry has been deleted. Up to a turnover of CHF 100k an entry is optional for sole proprietorship. It also means the turnover is less than 100k which would give room for just one full time employee at best.
This just makes it more suspicious. There is someone answering emails and I got a call from a man on the business number. So he himself is probably saying that he is out of the country. For what reason I have no idea.

My next idea is to go to the business property and wait outside with the letter and a pen. I know what he looks like.
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:22
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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No.Only the entry has been deleted. Up to a turnover of CHF 100k an entry is optional for sole proprietorship. It also means the turnover is less than 100k which would give room for just one full time employee at best.

Further to aSwissInTheUS's comment, individual proprietors should have a company number (UID) even if their annual sales are less than CHF 100'000. Company numbers can be found at this link:

https://www.uid.admin.ch/Search.aspx?lang=en
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:31
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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I fully understand they have no oblgation to remove it, it just seemed odd all the excuses and time they have wasted saying no.

It seemed further odd that they are running a business with absolutely no boss. I forgot to mention this has been going on since February, so they are into month 4 without a boss in the country.

I know the name already, I just do not know how to contact him and sending a letter won't help as he is supposedly 'out of the country'.
After the first time they said no it was you wasting time and arguments, not them.

The Betreibungauszug states whether you had a Betreibung within the last five years. And yes, you did. And that is what a landlord for example would like to know (and whether it was one or 15 of course) to get an impression about how long you need to be pushed until you pay your bills.
If all of them would be deleted after settlement, what would this info be worth?

You had one, they don't want to delete it, so live with it until it will simply disappear as it only shows the five years before printing it out.

Whether this company has an explicit boss and where he is is none of your concern.
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:32
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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Further to aSwissInTheUS's comment, individual proprietors should have a company number (UID) even if their annual sales are less than CHF 100'000. Company numbers can be found at this link:

https://www.uid.admin.ch/Search.aspx?lang=en
Ok the U-ID is still active. I will try the registered letter to the owner route as well as going to the premise itself with the letter and ringing the bell.

Other than that it seems I am completely out of options.
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Old 03.07.2020, 15:38
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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Further to aSwissInTheUS's comment, individual proprietors should have a company number (UID) even if their annual sales are less than CHF 100'000. Company numbers can be found at this link:

https://www.uid.admin.ch/Search.aspx?lang=en
You only get one when you sign up for VAT or rgister the company. You only must sign up for VAT once you make a turn over of more than CHF 100k. Before that it is optional. But, AFAIK once you got an UID it is for lifetime.
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Old 03.07.2020, 16:09
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

You seem to be spending a lot of time and effort about something because it "just looks nasty" and you admit you have failed to make a payment before. Did you get the last one deleted??
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Old 03.07.2020, 18:56
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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You only get one when you sign up for VAT or rgister the company. You only must sign up for VAT once you make a turn over of more than CHF 100k. Before that it is optional. But, AFAIK once you got an UID it is for lifetime.

In addition to the two ways mentioned, if an individual applies for self-employment status with a compensation fund (Ausgleichskasse) but does not have a UID, the compensation fund will apply for a UID for the self-employment applicant. Please see this link (German):

https://www.svasg.ch/news/meldungen/20160127_uid.php
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Old 03.07.2020, 19:05
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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1. You have no right that it gets deleted. It is just goodwill. But it goes away on its own after 5 years.

2. If the company is not registered than it is an Einzelfirma and the owner must be named in the company name. You can very easily send a registered letter directly to the owner. Just use the known company address.
So effectively, even if the owner is tracked down and received the requests, he's within his rights to say "No".
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Old 03.07.2020, 19:22
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Re: Betreibung Fight and Dodgy Company

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So effectively, even if the owner is tracked down and received the requests, he's within his rights to say "No".
Swiss Authorities Online (ch.ch) says:

"How to have information removed from the debt enforcement register
You believe that the debt enforcement proceedings were unjustified. You filed an objection notice and the creditor decided not to pursue the debt. Three months have passed since you received the payment summons.
  • You can send a request to your local debt enforcement office asking for the record of the summons to be deleted from the debt enforcement register. The fee for this is CHF 40. The link below takes you to request form (not available in English).
You have paid the amount you owed or come to some other arrangement with the creditor.
  • You can ask the creditor for a declaration stating that they are no longer pursuing the debt. The creditor is not obliged to provide this. Any declaration provided should be sent to the debt enforcement office.
You cannot make a request asking for the summons to be deleted from the register (e.g. because you did not file an objection notice) and the creditor does not agree to drop the debt enforcement proceedings:
  • The notice will remain in the debt enforcement register for five years. If you wish to have the notice removed from the register before the end of these five years, you must apply to the court responsible and demonstrate in civil proceedings that the debt never existed or that it was non-enforceable at the time the payment summons was issued."
https://www.ch.ch/en/deleting-debt-enforcement-record/
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