(Part 1 is here)
Not-quite-Ed first verified the mailing address on file, which was the correct home address. He had no idea why this recent letter came to my work. I explained that I wasn't ignoring them and that it appears I'm missing some of their mail. He asked if I wanted to change my address. I pointed out to him that it didn't appear to matter what address they had since, even with the correct address on file, they had sent the letter to my work. He was silent. After a beat, I let him off the hook with a "Don't worry about it."
Before we got started, Ed needed to call the wife. This was my wife's claim and Almost-Ed needed her consent to talk to me about it. He puts me on hold and calls her. I heard about the conversation later:
Ed: Hello this is [inaudible name] with New Insurance Co., may I have your name?
Wife: No, you called me.
Ed: Yes, well, I need to confirm your name and member number before we can discuss your account.
Wife: Again, you called me. What was your name again?
Ed: [inaudible name again] with New Insurance Co. Can you confirm your member number for me?
Wife: No. Why are you calling?
Ed: I can’t discuss anything with you until you confirm your member number.
Wife: Then this is going to be a very short conversation.
<This goes around a few times, until Ed tells her that I'm the one initiating all this and I'm waiting on the other line.>
Wife: So, you’ve got Kelly on the other line?
Ed: Yes, I have Mr. Byrd on the other line. I just needed to confirm with you that I can talk to him about your claim.
Wife: Then you can conference him in so I can talk to him too.
Ed: Umm...well...I don't think I can conference him in.
Wife: Hmm. Not suspicious at all.
<Ed eventually says enough things only the insurance company should know to convince the wife this probably isn’t just some random phishing attempt. Even so, she never gave him any information beyond, “Yes, you can talk to Kelly about me.”>
Back on the line with me, Ed insisted that what I really needed to do was contact the provider where my wife got the follow-up and get them to answer a survey my New Insurance Co. sent them a month ago. I never understood why he was talking about a survey. I explained that I was under the impression that what he needed from me was a certificate of prior coverage. He agreed (and the survey was forgotten).
Ed: Yes. That would work. I can call your old insurance and conference them with you so I can explain the correct information if you would like.
<Now, knowing my wife's side of the conversation, it is interesting he wouldn't conference in her but could do it with the other company>
Me: Srsly? You can? YES!
Ed: Please hold....<a couple of minutes pass>. Ok, I have Joan from Old Insurance Co. on the line.
Joan: <Introduces herself and verifies I am who I say I am>
Ed: Ok, I would like you to fax a Certificate of Prior Coverage to 123-456-7890
Joan: Ok. But...
Ed: ...with a subject line of Claim Resolution, Member #8675309
Joan: Ok. But we did this in June, why do...
Me: Joan, this is Kelly. I understand this is a repeat request. Would you mind just doing it again?
Joan: Uh-huh. <clickity-clack>...done. The fax will be sent in 2-3 minutes.
Joan: May I help you with anything else today?
Me/Ed: No. Thank you! Bye.
<At this point I'm impressed with Joan and wish I was still covered by Old Insurance Co.>
Me: Ok Ed, what do we d...
Ed: "Joan...JOAN!...Oh-no. Oh-no. I gave her the wrong subject line information. Oh-no.
Me: Fantastic. Does this matter? Will the fax still go to the right place?
Me: Right. Sure it will.
Me: Ok, since it's only going to be 2-3 minutes, I'll just wait here on the call until you can go verify the fax is received.
Ed: I can't.
Me: Sure you ca...
Ed: NO. You do not underSTAND the system. We use a computer-like software to do emails fax.
Me: <making some guesses at what he meant> Ok, there's no actual fax machine that spits out paper you can get your hands on. The whole thing is an electronic document management system.
Me: So I'll just wait 2-3 minutes and you keep hitting 'refresh' on your screen there until it shows up in my file.
Ed: NO. You do not underSTAND the system. It takes many hours. I guess I can call you back when it happens.
Me: Right. I do not understand ANY of this. I also do not believe you will call me back.
Ed: I will of course call you back of course by the end of the following day of course!
Of course, I don't trust him. I convince him to give me a direct number to contact him in case he doesn't call me back. He keeps insisting that this isn't necessary because "Of course he'll call me back by the end of the following day."
(The final part is coming soon)