Can dead people read? Can they receive mail?
I ask those questions with my tongue planted firmly in my cheek after reading this article about how PayPal sent a deceased woman a letter notifying her she was in default and demanding payment of her outstanding debts. The woman, who died in May from breast cancer, was in breach of contract and PayPal said it might take legal action as a result.
The line of the letter that makes me shake my head is this one:
“You are in breach of condition 15-4(c) of your agreement with Paypal Credit as we have received notice that you are deceased. In accordance with condition 15-4(c), we are entitled to close your account, terminate your agreement and demand repayment of the full amount outstanding.”
The woman’s husband had provided a copy of her death certificate, her will, and her identification, which were requested by PayPal.
PayPal subsequently contacted the woman’s husband and notified him that the debt had been written off and apologized for the letter, which it blamed on a bug, bad letter template, or human error.
In a statement, the company said it was “urgently reviewing our internal processes to ensure this does not happen again.”