I thought it would be a good idea to remind readers that most insurers are now operating somewhere between totally awful and down right terrible. The only real helpers in this are the Customer Service reps, who despite looking every where for living bodies to take calls, can’t find them.
I know it’s frustrating since I’m jumping through hoops for my clients on a daily basis these days. Many remote claims reps have foreign sounding names, and that’s OK, but it would be helpful if they could speak English. This makes me wonder just how “remote” these reps really are. In any event, it’s hard trying to get people on the phone who can understand the issues much less resolve them.
Normally, I would bump up requests for assistance to claims managers, but they make themselves so darned unavailable. No manager could possibly have as many meetings as they claim. This is consistent with insurance transparency that forces claims handlers to remain on the “hot seats” most of the time, keeping the public away from those who actually make claims decisions.
Claims handlers are stretched pretty thin. This week I was speaking to a claims handler who was reading off information from another person’s claim file. About the time I was wondering who he was talking about, since it wasn’t my client, he discovered his error and said, “Oops, that’s not right”, and went on to read something else. It’s a real mess and you have to be careful what information you’re being given.
The point is that I had to escalate several issues to the VP of Claims, particularly at Mutual of Omaha, who did actually call me to leave a message. Requests to speak with executives higher on the hierarchy usually go on a “pay no mind list”, so I suppose I lucked out.
Insureds and claimants should always make sure they follow-through and force insurers to respond. Lately, even faxes and written documentation isn’t getting through to anyone. “Communication” centers aren’t working correctly, and even checks are late, causing fear and anxiety on the part of insureds and claimants.
Having a disability claim at this point in time is going to be bumpy and a bit frustrating. Just keep sending things in writing only, keep copies, and hope the information gets into your file.