The N26 nightmare – part 4

… continuing the story.

Your registration has been successfully reset. Therefore, you can resume this procedure on February 26. I decided to go back to Germany – for two weeks – and to come back to France in early March…

I kept my word, indeed, and went back to Germany for the name’s day of my wife (see The N26 nightmare – part 3). The idea was to spend two weeks with her; the original plan actually (see The N26 nightmare begins). However, this was quite apart from the fact that…

The good

We enjoyed our Valentine’s day – despite this unfortunate email.Me

This is how I finished the first post of this N26 nightmare miniseries. No need to specify the actual date1, just to remind you that it was the day before I had to go back to France for a “little interruption” in our two-week get-together (see N26 – this time, it’s for real, right?). What matters here is that we indeed enjoyed the holiday.

After that, I was in France for five days only – before I could say Jack Robinson indeed, but without getting an N26 bank account!

Back in Germany, a few days after celebrating the name’s day of my wife, something unexpected shook my life. On March 2, it was confirmed – our life would never be the same. I was supposed to go back to France two days later; yet, I decided to stay for an extra three-week period. Why? Because I didn’t want to miss this oh precious moment:

Baby ultrasound

The size of a peanut; still, the strongest heartbeat I have ever seen!

The bad

The coronavirus disease 2019, aka Covid-19, could have easily overshadowed these moments of joy; yet, neither the gloomy forecast nor the first measures did affect our life unduly. However, things start to change when, on March 11, Dr. Tedros Adhanom – Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) – declared the novel coronavirus a global pandemic:

Dr. Tedros Adhanom (WHO) declares coronavirus a pandemic.

A few days later, Germany – like many European countries at the time – decided to close its borders to stem the spread of the virus. Its border with France was shut on March 17. The measure was initially planned for 30 days, but it was repeatedly extended … Accordingly, in late April, I was still in Germany!

Of course, I had the right to cross the border to return home (i.e. back to France), but I would have not been allowed to make it back to see my wife and my baby to-be-born. Therefore, I decided to stay with them; this damn one-euro tax could wait, no matter the financial penalties…

The ugly

On April 25, I received a letter from the French Organization for the Collection of Social Security and Family Benefit Contributions, namely URSSAF. This was the response to my inquiry2 to the French administration (see When all the crap hits the fan at the same time…):

Sir,

I invite you to regularize your situation as soon as possible and to submit a request for the remission of late payment penalties.
Your payment by PayPal Pro was not accepted by our system. You cannot pay your contributions by this method of payment.

With the letter, there was a one-page explanation How to make your transfer from my bank account. Should I remind you that doing so (with my personal account) would have sounded the death knell for the latter (see When all the crap hits the fan at the same time…). My only way out of this catch 22 was to open an account in another bank (see A “real” bank – N26). Back to square one!

I had no other choice but to go to France and open this cursed N26 account. Anyway, the border (from France to Germany) was supposed to re-open on May 4. Besides, I could not go with my wife to the prenatal visits anymore due to Covid-19 restrictions.

To be continued…


1 Just in case you would not know, Valentine’s Day is celebrated annually on February 14. Now, it might be worth specifying that the events described in this post took place in 2020. ^
2 Briefly, I was asking why my one-euro contribution did not go through and if there was any compatibility issue with my method of payment (PayPal Pro), what alternative they were proposing for me to regularize the situation. ^

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