Over the weekend I received a ticket from the Procuratore Speciale Autostrade (Nivi Credit). The paperwork says that we did not pay (or could not pay) a toll on Oct. 8, 2005. They "invite" me to pay the 32 Euro fee within 15 days. Just curious if this has happened to other people and what they chose to do with the ticket.
3 years ago I was in Florence with rental car that was supposedly permitted. A year later I got not a ticket, but a notice from avis that polizia attempted to ticket me for no permit. I never received the actual ticket. This past few months I was in Italy again with a rental car and never heard a word about the 3 year old incident.
I just had the same today too. Mine is for a journey made in May 2005 and to be honest I can't recall skipping any toll booth or even encountering anything strange. I'm virtually certain that I'd paid at every booth and can't imagine how I would not have done, after all, this is a booth in a town that I've been to 3 times before without issue. The notice is spot on in terms of date and time, so seems legitimate. The only thing that makes me sceptical is that it's 2 years old and it's for a poxy 3 Euros. Do I really want to be opening up my bank details to these people for 3 Euros?
I work with a couple of Italians so will get some advice from them and put another post up tomorrow. In the mean time, any other advice would be welcome.
I just got the same but dated 31/03/05, I spend a lot of time on business in Italy so I am a little wary.
I have never yet seen a barrier up that has been un-manned and monitored by a camera.
Anybody else heard of this or is it a scam?
I have checked my records, I was in Italy at the time of the alleged transgression so it makes me wonder.
I have travelled extensively in Northern Italy and never yet not paid a toll nor been through a toll that was open and unmanned.
My payment request is for 11.90 euros and there is no mention of which road I was on. Although there is a car registration number there is no details of which car hire company.
Also on the back of the letter is a detail matrix which is not filled in.
I too am very sceptical about giving bank details in this instance.
I have asked an Italian contact to look into it.
Car rental companies love to find a reason to pad your bill. One way is this: if police or other authority have license number of car and trace it to a rental agency, the rental agency must dig in records to match car, date, and renter, then give your personal info to the police or other authority. Thus you would typically see charge or bill from the rental agency for, typically, 5-15 euro for that service. That is what happened in my case was the tipoff that someone had inquired about the vehicle I rented.
Eh eh... I got one too! :-)
Same that happened to you all, I was in a rental car, the letter refers to facts that happened two years ago. I can't imagine how we passed any toll booth without paying, but I was not the only driver and I was sleeping part of the time, and after two years I can't quite recall.
Is this legitimate? I'm no attorney, but I collected some information.
Firstly, and most importantly, Nivi Credit is a legitimate company and this does not appear to me like being an attempt to gather your personal details (note: I just said does not appear to me -- it's my personal impression and nothing else).
Secondly, Autostrade SPA, the Italian highway company, has by terms of law five years to collect any unpaid fees. If you know you have not paid, you should pay (of course!). The letter you have received does not make the five years start over, as Nivi Credit should have sent a registered letter to have that effect by law (continues...)
If my sources are correct, Nivi Credit does not own the credit, and so they can't "force" you to pay, they can only "ask" that you pay. Consumer Unions in Italy will tell you that any letter that you have not received as "registered mail" can be ignored.
Even when you receive such a registered mail, you can ask the proof of the fact, and without such a proof you could challenge the request in an Italian court. You will agree with me that challenging petty amounts (a few euro) in a court is unpractical. According to Italian regulars, that is what the Autostrade company thinks as well, and for small amounts there is no second request of payment nor registered mail (which alone costs a few euro) to follow.
All the above said, I think I'm going to pay. (continues...)
I know that probably I could get away without, but it's just 10 euro, their report matches my itinerary at that time, they took the pain of tracing the license plate of my rental car to my name, and I rent from that car rental company from time to time -- I don't think they blacklist their clients, but you never know. Moreover, over here when this kind of things escalate there is a trend of making the amounts grow exponentially, and in 3 more years I might have to face a charge much higher, or maybe face the dreadful registered mail, to which I'll have to reply with a registered mail myself and which will cost half the amount I'm requested now - and after which I might end up paying anyway to avoid wasting my time.
I hope that helps clarify, at least a little bit!
One more thing, now that I've completed my payment: Nivi Credit does not collect your credit card details. You are sent to the online gateway of a very reputable Italian bank, that I've been using for years for my online payment without a problem.
After the payment you are sent back to their web site, where the status of your ticket is immediately updated to "paid". Surprisingly efficient for Italy :-)
Not that I've been happy to pay :-), but at least I know I won't loose my sleep because of this transaction :-)
I just received the same letter today for a mysteriously missed toll payment. It is correct for my location on that date, but I, too, don't think there is any way to get on/off the Autostrade without paying. There is an option on the web site to dispute the charge and claim that you've already paid - this seems most likely to be the reality to me. Anyone out there with experience or expertise on this?
If you DID NOT get it registered mail.......toss it!
(or maybe frame it......what a great conversation piece!)
If you did receive it "registered mail", the "long arm" of the Italian law is NOT going to come here and wisk you away for thiry Euros, or throw you in jail the next time you fly into Italia!
Attached is an interesting read in TA about a traffic ticket, and their attempts at paying it.
Seems kinda funny to me how you could have missed your payment when you got to the toll booth......I don't see how it would be possible. This is why I use my VISA to pay. Receipts always tell the REAL story.
Kathleen, now that you mention it, yes, getting on you stop and pick up a ticket. Anytime you get off you have to surrender the ticket. Even if you were able to get off without paying you'd have the ticket in hand, which would be a wakeup!
I agree. How can you not pay a toll since you have to get the ticket when you get on and pay for it when you get off. We kept all of our receipts plus paid with a credit card on almost every ocassion. Thanks to all for this information. I will now hold onto my records for 5 years.
Seems to me the expense of mailing a letter from Italy would not be worth it to collect a 10 or 15 Euro ticket.
Months after a 2005 trip to Italy, the Polizia Stradale (Autostrada Police) sent me a registered letter, which I refused to sign for and left at the post office, figuring it was for a speeding offense with a rental car.
In the meantime, I moved and now, 2 years later, I received a letter from NIVI Credit for a missed toll of 4.23 plus 4.11 surcharge. Thinking that this was what the original refused letter was about, I paid it on line a few days ago. Today, I received notice that another piece of registered mail is waiting for me at the post office. Could the toll collection letter be a scam to get the new address of a speeder who has moved? Is this a sting or am I just paranoid? Like other posters, I don't recall missing any tolls.
The original letter I received in the mail was NOT registered. So I am guessing I should not pay it. Plus, now I cannot even find the paperwork.
I too have recently received the same notice - but mine is for an alleged offence from July 8, 2004 -
i just came back from Italy - and you cannot get off those roads without paying the toll - so how can this be legit?
will try to check my old credit card bills to see if i paid be card to help support my payment
Thanks for letting us know that this scam is still alive and well. Remember what all the consumer agencys in Italy and the US tell you:
If the notice or letter did NOT come certified or registered.......TOSS IT!
I have also received a registered letter from Nivi Credit. Does anyone know the consequences of not paying? Can Nivi Credit in Italy affect credit in The States?
Any help or info. is appreciated.
On the autostrada (can't remember the A# off hand, wanna say A12....anyways)between Rome and Naples we hit a tollbooth that we did not have a ticket for. The first booth took our payment at a certain point and I figured the rest of the road was not a toll road. Maybe 20/30 kilometers down the road we hit the second booth which totally confused me as we did not have a ticket. Get to the booth and it has a price on the screen. I assume it's a set price for anyone coming through there. This is the only time I've come across this so far but there are situations where you may not have a ticket. I've also come across one booth (can't remember if it was same trip or not)that was unmanned and not gated BUT there were a couple of Financial Police cars set to the side which I assume were to chase down any evil non toll payers.