I registered a domain with 1and1 back in November 2006. I used it for a while just pointing the A records to a VPS somewhere, but forgot all about it after 6 months and the renewal period came and went...
That was until about 2 months after the renewal date had passed, I got a letter from a debt collection agency demanding £25 for an unpaid invoice!
I checked into this, and they had been unable to charge my credit card at the time of renewal. This was down to the card being cancelled in between first registering the domain and the renewal date.
OK, fair enough I though, but as it's for a domain renewal, surely they would have just not renewed it? But when I checked the WHOIS record, they had renewed it! Which strikes me as a little "dull" for a company to do something for a customer without actually receiving payment.....but that's another story!
So 1and1 had renewed a domain for me, without taking payment up front, and were now chasing me for the money!
OK I though, maybe I need to cancel the account with 1and1? So I did, and it got cancelled, and my login information didn't work any more etc etc.
But I got another snotty letter from the debt collection agency.
I spoke to the Debt Collect agency, and basically said that I had to pay because of the "Terms and Conditions". I pressed the matter, but was then referred back to 1and1! I then contacted 1and1 and they basically said the same thing, but that I needed to take the matter up with the debt collection agency! Talk about going round in circles!
So I looked into the terms and conditions
, but these are woolly as you like! I did however manage to pull out once bit which said...
The Company agrees that for the Duration Period of this Agreement and in consideration of the payment of the Charges by the Customer it will renew the registration of domain name(s), Hosting fees, Additional services for the Renewal Period.
OK, great I thought! 1and1 should have only renewed the domain once I paid them! Sadly, the standard response from the debt collection company when you show them stuff like this is just that you still owe the money!
So has anyone else experienced anything like this with 1and1? I think their attitude sucks here and they are clearly trying to frighten people into paying money for domain renewals. I've spoken to their "complaints" department, and their billing department but it's like pulling teeth. The debt collection company is slow to respond, and I get the impression they they don't understand the internet very well.....
I just don't understand how they can invoice me for a domain renewal and then chase me for it as they are doing! I'm sure it must breach some sort of consumer rights or something.