His Reason To Be Angry Has Been Cancelled

, , , | Right | October 10, 2019

(I work in a call center for a government agency that helps people pay for their health insurance plans. It’s not uncommon for people to be confused about how to cancel insurance, to make mistakes, and to blame us when they make those mistakes, so I dread whenever someone calls and says they have an issue with a cancellation.)

Me: “Hello! Thank you for calling [Government Agency]! What can I do to assist you today?”

Caller: “I’m still being charged for insurance I cancelled four months ago! I’m getting really angry now and I want you to stop billing me!”

Me: “I’m so sorry to hear that, sir. We are not the insurance company, so we aren’t involved with sending you bills, but I’m happy to do whatever I can do to help you!”

(I ask for his information and find his account.)

Me: “Oh, well, I don’t see that you called to cancel your insurance plan and it’s still active. When did you call us to cancel?”

Caller: “D*** it, are you calling me a liar?! I cancelled my plan and I want you to stop f****** billing me!”

Me: “I understand you’re frustrated, sir, but I am trying to help you. Do you remember approximately when you called us to cancel? Or did you maybe call the insurance company?”

(At this point, I’m thinking he accidentally called the insurance company to cancel, because that’s a common mistake. When someone’s insurance is partially financed through our agency, they can only cancel by calling us directly.)

Caller: “I didn’t call anyone, d*** it! I did what anyone does to cancel a service! I wrote ‘cancel’ on the bill’s envelope and had it mailed back return-to-sender!”

(Well, that’s a new one. I try very patiently to explain that that is not a valid method of making a cancellation and that those automated billing statements from insurance companies aren’t sent from an address where people can receive mail. I also gently explain that even if the insurance company had gotten the letter, they couldn’t have done anything with it. To cancel, a person needs to either call us directly and validate their identity or to go online and cancel using their password-protected account. This goes on for twenty-five minutes.)

Me: “Again, I do understand that you feel frustrated with this situation, sir, but that was not an accepted method of cancelling. I can cancel your insurance moving forward, but you will still be responsible for the past month’s premiums.”

Caller: “How stupid can you be?! This is how I’ve always cancelled things in the past! I don’t owe anything! Did you even graduate high school?! Give me someone with a brain! I want a supervisor!”

(I seriously doubt most places would accept what he did as a valid cancellation, but I apologized once again for his frustration and connected him with a supervisor who told him the exact same thing. He called back four times that day, trying to find someone who could give him a different answer.)

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