It’s not just the fine print on contracts and agreements which you should check – unless you wish to sell your soul – your very future could be at risk if you don’t.
With the advent of the Internet we were faced not just with the good side of society but also – and increasingly – with the dark side. Online contracts which we effectively sign without knowing we are doing so, and end up paying out for. Subscriptions to worthless newsletters when all we wanted was some quick information. Downloading costs for that one tune we love on our smart phone, but which are linked to a monthly fee and a long cancellation term. We’ve seen them all, and they are still all there, just waiting for the unwary.
But government paperwork? Surely the government isn’t out to cheat us, is it?
Screenshot Source: Twitter / CNBC
Before everyone starts laughing and spluttering their coffee all over the place: they don’t necessarily mean to cheat us. What is a good idea on paper is not necessarily something which will work in reality; a quick read through the ideas of Marx will tell you that straight off.
A friend of mine received his annual pension assessment from the German government this week, and is now seriously considering his future in the marketplace. His assessment – through contributory payments taken direct from his wages as a percentage of his earnings – told him two things: how much he would get if he took his pension now, and how much he would get if he was forced to take his pension now by being one hundred percent unfit to work. There was also an assessment of what he would receive in pension payments when he finally retires in however many years time.
The thing which caused him pause for thought: the earned pension payments were slightly less than the invalidity pension payments. Should he carry on working, or would it be better to plead disability?
- Viktoria Michaelis.