Losing a loved one is one of the most painful things a person can experience, but apparently to a company like PayPal, it is so much worse than that — it’s putting you in breach of their rules and they’ll come after you, reports BBC News. It all started when PayPal contacted Lindsay Durdle, who passed away from cancer, to somehow tell her that she had broken their rules with her having died and that they were considering taking legal action because of it. Just so you don’t think the company is completely heartless, they did admit their mistake, sending a letter of apology to her husband in which they acknowledged that their original letter was “insensitive.” They also let Howard Durdle know that they were beginning an investigation to figure out how such a letter was sent out in the first place.
They were made aware of their mistake after her widower contacted the BBC. His motivation was that he wants corporations to realize how upsetting it is to receive their automated correspondence, especially considering his wife had passed away so young at age 37 on May 31. This was after she had been diagnosed with breast cancer about a year and a half earlier, and it eventually spread to her lungs and brain.
While he had contacted the company to let them know so they could close out her account, providing them with everything they had asked for including her death certificate, her will, and his identification, he was shocked when a letter arrived addressed to her at their Bucklebury, West Berkshire, residence. Adding insult to injury, it read, “Important: You should read this notice carefully.”
“It said that Mrs Durdle owed the company about £3,200 and went on to say: ‘You are in breach of condition 15.4(c) of your agreement with PayPal Credit as we have received notice that you are deceased… this breach is not capable of remedy,'” reports BBC News.
According to Mr. Durdle, PayPal let him know there were three possibilities in play with how something like this could have happened — a bug, a bad letter template, or human error, though to think a human could have looked at the situation and thought sending this was still a good idea is a bit disconcerting. While PayPal told him they would investigate, they also let him know that they wouldn’t be informing him of their findings — because it was an “internal” matter. At least they did manage to write off the debt.