Under poor advice from friend, we signed a lease in 2003 with Northern Leasing when we opened a small retail store. It immediately became evident that it was a bad idea: the sales rep lied and deceived us and generally did not deliver on anything he promised.
We did use the equipment for the duration of our business, and continued to pay Northern Leasing for several months after we closed the business because we had a 4 year lease. The lease commitment was up in 2007, and we thought our issues with the company were over.
Fast forward to 2011, on March 11 we received a letter in the mail entitled
Billing Notice of Amount Due and Payable Now
The letter was dated 2/28, but postmarked 3/8. It said that an audit of our account determined that certain taxes and related fess due were either not collected or undercollected. The letter stated that we owed $113.52 and if we didn't contact them by 3/11, then they would debit the money from our account. Of course, we received the letter on Friday night, too late to call, and they deducted the money from our bank account on the same day.
We placed a call to Northern Leasing today and the representative literally laughed at us on the phone. We told her that we would be glad to accept the charges as owed if they could show us some evidence that we owed the money and how the amount was determined. Of course, she could not and would not give us any of this information. She stated that we could contact the tax assessor's office in the town in which we owned the business. We will be calling them tomorrow.
She states that she is sending us a release for us to sign that says we will no longer owe them any additional money. This was offered after we questioned how they could charge us for fees on a lease that was signed in 2003 and ended in 2007. Rest assured we will not be signing any paper that Northern Leasing provides us without consulting an attorney. I wish we had researched this company years ago, since this seems to be their long term strategy: targeting and ripping off small business owners.