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Robert Fechner Legal Berlin

Dear Readers,

Have you received a cease and desist letter from Fechner Legal (www.fechner.legal or old website) or photography-defender.com as we did? A letter similar or almost identical to the below scam legal extortion attempt claiming damages without any evidence?

We spun up this webpage to help others who found themselves in the same situation as ourselves. We may also share our story in full, with interesting insights from the back and forth email weekly/bi-weekly exchanges from this law firm – who in our opinion perform morally wrong although not illegal scare tactics in order to claim wildly exaggerated damages that come with huge legal fees. 

Note this is not legal advice and we are not lawyers. We operate a a commercial website and we allow user contributions. One user uploaded a very small photo which does seem to be copyrighted. As soon as we were notified it was taken down. We do take copyright seriously and request that contributors do the same, with an agreement in place stating such.

Fechner Legal are a law firm with offices in Frankfurt and Berlin. The company is headed by “Laywer” (not “lawyer”) Robert Fechner. Robert seems to be the only “Team member” from reviewing the company website, with accolades that include a 3 month stay in Uganda. Referred to online as a copyright troll Fechner specializes in copyright law and works in conjunction with PhotoClaim and photography-defender.com.

Are these letters genuine or a scam?

The letters are genuine, and despite the aggressive tone which may frighten or scare recipients there are multiple avenues you can take. Don’t be alarmed and don’t be frightened. This law firm and their associate companies specialize in this type of scare tactic. From reading other reports and talking with a German based solicitor it’s a very questionable business practice that reflects poorly on the whole legal profession. Is this really the best Fechner Legal can do as a solicitor, does he sleep well at night trying to extract extortionate sums of money using such methods?  

Should I respond or sign the cease and desist letter?

Firstly note that a cease-and-desist email has no legal standing. It is simply a warning – a request to stop the offending behavior before legal action is taken

Carefully review the contents of the email and never sign the cease and desist letter unless you are absolutely certain this is the direction you want to take. Signing this letter is an admission of guilt and it could lead to trouble. 

Based on others findings in many users\’ cases they simply ignored these emails given the such highly disproportionate figures being demanded, figures which include penalties and legal fees. Such fees and penalties can be enforced only by a court order in your own jurisdiction (in my opinion – not legal advice). Along with this Fechner Legal would have to provide proof of the damages being claimed. 

You may wish to ask yourself these questions before responding to an email.

  • Did you have the image in question live on your website? If so take down immediately and reach out to the original owner of the images. Based on other reports there have been cases whereby the owner of the images were not even aware of the misuse of their image. This won’t stop Fechner from demanding extortionate sums of money in damages. Offer the copyright owner – and not Fechner Legal – a fair price for the image used where possible. Many copyright holders have their images for sale elsewhere. Of course apologise and make additional effort to ensure this doesn’t happen again. You may get a satisfactory response.
  • Consider your jurisdiction: Is the image used copyrighted in your own jurisdiction? What is the copyright holders jurisdiction? Where should any legal action take place? In our case we’re going to request any copy of court filings to the German court to defend before then asking to be transferred to our country. We don’t ever expect it to get that far. You may wish to seek legal counsel in our home country.  
  • Is the image used really copyrightedBased on other reports the images used may have been legitimately purchased. If so, provide proof, the onus is on the Fechner Legal to prove you have engaged in copyright theft. 
  • Consider your situation: Are you a small blog owner that doesn’t have a commercial website? Have you financially gained from the image in question? Based on solicitors advice from sources such as here it’s unlikely such a case would end up in the court. 

In our case we are happy for this to go to court, we can prove we make every effort to ensure valid use of the images on our site, and we have a written confirmation from contributors that they will not use copyrighted material. If unsure seek legal advice. 

You may also wish to share your honest experience on Trustpilot or Google Reviews. I repeat – your own personal and honest opinion, whether good or bad. 

Trustpilot | Google Maps | Second Google Maps listing ???? Did someone manage to claim ownership of this one and rename it, thereby removing the association?

As referenced on his website and another website associated with Fechner is also a member of the Berlin Bar Association and the Brandenberg Bar Association. While you can report Fechner if you feel there has been malpractice or I’ve been unable to find any records from performing a search with either bar (Berlin | Brandenberg). 

If you feel you’ve been receiving constant emails which you shouldn’t have you can report this website to the .de domain registrar

Where can I share my experience for others to view? 

You may also wish to share your honest experience on Trustpilot or Google Reviews. I repeat – your own personal and honest opinion, whether good or bad. 

If you feel you\’ve been a victim of a scam or you\’re looking for redress contact Germany authorities or the bank associated with the letter or email you received. The bank details are contained within the letter.

We have more information on how to report Robert Fechner of Fechner Legal in Berlin on the FAQs page.

Disclose your own letters

If you wish to disclose any emails or letters sent to you by Robert Fechner, or alternatively share your own experience email info@fechner-legal-letters.com. Please remove the below before sharing:

  • Any personally identifiable information
  • Any case number
  • Any copyright holder information