Not Much Assurance About The Insurance, Part 9

, , , , , | Working | January 9, 2018

(My husband is rear-ended by a young man who isn’t paying attention. No one is hurt but there is some damage to the new truck my husband drives, around $9,000. I start calling the very well-known national car insurance company of the person who hit us. They tell us they will get right on it. A week goes by and I hear nothing so I call them. I am told they are working on it but haven’t talked to their client that hit us, and they need to in order to get the claim going. Another week goes by and nothing. I call back and am told once again they can’t get a hold of their client. The police report actually has the man’s insurance agent on it. I call and they can’t believe that our damages haven’t been taken care of, but they can’t get a hold of the person who hit us. We go through this game for a full month. At this point I lose my temper and have quite an attitude; honestly, I am a bit rude. I call the customer service line. I get a very nice and understanding customer service representative who repeats the same thing to me.)

Me: “Okay, first, is this being recorded?”

Agent: “Ummm, yes.”

Me: “Good. I want to make sure. Now, first, I want to thank you for being so friendly and professional. I want to make sure you and your company know that I have not been mistreated in any way, and I apologize to you because I know you just work there. Now, I have had it. Your company does not need to talk to your client. You have a copy of the police report. He rear-ended us. The policy was in effect, according to your own records at the time of the accident. Period. I feel I have been more than fair in my treatment of you. You have had ample opportunity to take care of this. So, today is Friday. You have until Monday at 4:45 pm to make arrangements to repair our truck. Do not bother calling at 4:46, because at that time I will be calling an attorney. One of those on TV. I don’t have the money for an attorney, but I bet they can get that, too. Also, my husband is having some back pain, so I think we will also be seeing a doctor. Do I make myself clear? By 4:45 on Monday. Not a minute later.”

(At that point I demanded a supervisor, and after telling him that I appreciated the professionalism and friendliness of the representatives, I repeated the whole thing I said earlier and hung up. Three hours later, a rental car company called me saying they had my rental car ready. I asked, “What car?” They told me the insurance company had set it up for us to drive while the truck was being repaired. Amazing how quickly they got everything done.)

Too Busy For An Active Lifestyle

, , , | Healthy | January 5, 2018

(I work at a call center for medical insurance.)

Me: “Do you have income from work?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “In the next 12 months do you expect any income changes?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “Did you leave a job in the last 30 days?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “How do you support your household?”

Customer: “Family supports me.”

Me: “Do you go to school?”

Customer: “No, I don’t have time for that.”

(Talk about motivation.)

It Takes More Than Money To Clear A Bill, Part 2

, , , , | Healthy | December 30, 2017

Several years ago, I started to receive bills at my home in Nebraska, from an insurance agency on a policy that I no longer had, denying payment for psychiatric care/services. When I got the first bill, I called the number listed for the practice — in North Carolina. It turns out that they had a patient with the same name, down to the middle initial, and the same birthday. The doctor’s office agreed that I was not their patient, but said that it was up to the insurance carrier to sort out.

Three weeks after I contacted the insurance company letting them know I was not the right person, I got a letter in the mail telling me that according to their records, I *was* the right person, and could I please pay the bill. So I contacted them again. I was assured that it would be straightened out.

Sure enough, I got another letter in the mail from the insurance company telling me that their “investigation” is complete, and that I am the “right” person after all, in spite of living half-way across the country.

This back and forth with the insurance company went on for SIX MONTHS, each time the insurance people coming back telling me that I had made these appointments for psychiatric care, and increasingly nasty demands for payment.

Finally, I contacted a college buddy who was a lawyer for [Insurance Company], where upon he taught me the magic words: Violation of HIPAA.

Finally after nearly seven months, the magic words did the trick. I later found out that the insurance billing department was looking up patient information by name and birth date instead of social security number, and that my name was apparently the first one listed, in spite of the fact that my policy had been cancelled over four years prior due to a job change.

Related:
It Takes More Than Money To Clear A Bill

Building A Wall Between Them And Common Sense

, , , | Healthy | December 28, 2017

(I work for an insurance nurse-line helping people with injury and illness questions. We are required by HIPAA to fully verify a member before discussing any specific issues or giving specific information on their health plan. There have been a number of people who object to HIPAA law, but this one takes the cake. The member in question doesn’t have her ID card on her and doesn’t want to use alternative methods to verify who she is.)

Member: “But I didn’t know I’d need to identify myself. Why can’t you just give me the information I need?”

Me: “Federal privacy law, called HIPAA, does not allow us to discuss or give out information to unauthorized people.”

Member: “But that’s a dumb law and President Trump doesn’t allow dumb laws, so you need to give me the information I asked for!”

The Uninsured Dead

, , , , | Healthy | October 24, 2017

(A few months ago we signed up for pet insurance for all four of our animals. This month, we got caught by surprise by the payment and as a result, one of the payments did not process correctly. This is the email we got regarding the payment that did not process:)

Email: “Please call us on [number] or email us quoting [policy number] in regards to your insurance payment for your pet Zombie.”

(Punctuation is EVERYTHING.)

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