For a consumer, a letter from a collection agency firstly is a nuisance. Many do not understand that collection costs are incurred in addition to the principal claim. But the raising of collection costs is easily explained: a collection agency is a private company that provides a service. This service costs money, because a private company has to cover their costs.


Why is the debtor liable for the collection fees?

Some consumers may argue that the service offered by collection agencies should be paid for by the party making use of it. In fact, a company that hires a collection service provider usually pays such company in advance and transfers the collection costs. But it is the creditor's right to recover damages caused by damage due to delay  in payment from his debtor. The reimbursement of the damages due to delay is regulated by the German Civil Code (BGB), §§ 280, 286.

These damage due to delay also include collection costs, as part of legal costs. So ultimately the debtor is liable for the collection costs. In addition to the collection costs, the debtor will also be charged for all other costs incurred during the collection process. This is common legal practice and readily accepted as ancillary claim in the context of a default notice, for example.


How are collection costs incurred?

As with the majority of legitimate collection agencies, Arvato Financial Solutions' collection agency, infoscore Forderungsmanagement GmbH, bases its calculation of collection costs on the Lawyers' Remuneration Act (Rechtsanwaltsvergütungsgesetz or RVG). The collection cost amount is based on § 4 para. 5 Introductory Act to the Legal Services Act (RDGEG).

The collection agency itself incurs costs during the collection process, by contacting the debtor , in writing or by phone, for example, with the legal review of the situation and continuing investigations. It is not always possible to reach a debtor at his specified address. Costs arise in the process of locating him. These expenses (investigation costs) are not covered by collection costs.

Should you have any further questions about collection costs, you may contact infoscore Forderungsmanagement GmbH by phone or email. Please use the contact details on your payment request. You can also use this portal to register and obtain online information about receivables. When settling your debts, remember to not only transfer the principal claim, but the total amount requested of you, including any costs incurred.