This kind of thing has been going on at Unum for the last 25 years that I know of. Had this former Unum employee made these comments publicly in 2000, lawyers and the press would be all over her. Today, the fact that regulators, and attorneys looking for free whistleblowers, blip right over this says all that needs to be said.
If you are an insured and are wondering why I publish so much about Unum employees, you’ve already missed the point. If Unum is firing employees, and they do, for not agreeing with their denial agenda, or discrimination is taking place because of employee disability, age, and gender, then what lengths do you think this company is going to to deny your claim?
I encourage former Unum employees to contact me because I’ve been there. But, I hate it, when I’m right. This is why all Unum employees need to keep a journal and download information for their own personal files. This comment is right from the mouth of a Unum employee. How sad.
“As a former Unum employee (late 2016), I can attest to the fact that they do treat employees shabbily unless you buy into their close the claim as fast as you can philosophy. Disabled employees are probably treated the worst because we are closest to understanding what our disabled Insured’s are going through and we legitimately want to help. When I was hired, I was told we “trust, but verify” and that most claims have merit. I saw glimpses of that in my tenure, but by 2015-2016 that was lost.
I personally was fired from Unum after using STD / FMLA. My manager and HR never believed my condition and worked to stress me out of my job for quite some time to the point that I left work thinking I was having a heart attack, when it was a severe panic attack. One of my managers even joked to my colleagues about my condition, it was humiliating. Yet, even after reporting her to HR, she is still employed there. Those are the managers that seem to get promoted. So while I had among the best quality scores of all DBSs and took on the most complex of claims. I said next to persons doing the exact same job as me but earning $20k+ more than me and receiving much higher bonuses, with poorer quality scores, but they closed claims faster.
I made more than one complaint to HR and management about the extreme pressure to close legitimate claims and I spoke up about my own mistreatment and the “mean girl” vibe, to no avail. The end for me was obvious. I was ultimately terminated within 5 weeks of an ADA accommodation / FMLA. After I requested to be transferred to another department, I was instead transferred to another manager who was/is known for terminating employees. She badgered me daily, then trumped up a “falsified claim file” charge on me when what I did was accidentally put a note (claim document) on the wrong file that I left the client a voice mail and a second charge that I didn’t copy a complete email on a claim file. I actually copied the attachment but missed the body of the email. This manager couldn’t even tell me the dates that these two things happened. Mind you, Unum’s software is antiquated and easy to make these kinds of errors. These were errors every single employee that currently works at Unum has made. I never had been so much as on any kind of performance plan, had good performance evaluations every year, had among the best QA, good relationships with my claimants. But my last year at Unum I was torture. The job market then was not what it is today. Once you’re targeted, they make sure you’re out. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to prove wrongful termination. Management / HR knows and counts on this. With employees, they don’t put anything in writing unless they feel like they have something on you. I saw it a dozen times with other employees as well.
I can tell you ugly stories about how management laughs at mental health claimants and says things like “who isn’t stressed out” and jokes about different files in the elevator or chatting with fellow managers. I was spoken to for documenting a claim file with instructions given by a manager, that another manager said we shouldn’t post to a claim file because Unum could get in trouble if regulators saw that. We all received desperate calls every quarter end from managers trying to close any claims they can. All claims are seen as opportunities for closure even those in active chemotherapy or others still in the hospital after surgery. They started doing monthly or weekly reviews to try to hide this, but it was the same tactic. Managers had tricks to make numbers; having two (or more) simultaneous claims open for the same claimant with more than one period of disability so they can close one claim now and one later. Sometimes we would close the claim in one system one day and send a denial or close letter and then close it another system the next month so we could make that month’s numbers. (Financial reserve manipulation apparently hasn’t stopped.)
Sometimes there would be a close one month just to reopen it the next or the month after. Employees with fewer closes, had to do weekly or daily file reviews because, in Unum’s eyes, that DBS is missing “opportunities”. They fired some managers, but let others stay or move to other departments, even though they were equally (or more) responsible.
The sad truth is, how the company treat employees is exactly how they treat their claimants and vice versa, so it matters. If you don’t adopt the philosophy that most claimants are scamming or that there is an opportunity to make/save money on every claim, you’re gone. Thank goodness I’m much happier now. “
Thank you to the former Unum employee who posted this comment. It isn’t easy to make this kind of disclosure, but it clearly needs to be done.