Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Does She or Doesn’t She…

Well, I don’t know about her hair, but I can make a pretty good guess about her insurance: nope.
Okay, let’s go back to the beginning, and work our way forward.
I occasionally receive calls from distraught folks who are unhappy with their insurance coverage (generally, it’s because they think it’s too expensive; sometimes it’s because they got bad service). Such was the case today, when Melody called with a problem: she’s had an HSA for several years now (well, it started life as an MSA, but evolved along the way). Her agent has left the business (a not unusual occurrence), and the carrier’s home office staff has been, according to Melody, less than helpful. In the meantime, her premiums have increased to unacceptable levels, and she’d like to switch.
Hey, we’re here to help.
So I ask the normal questions (height and weight, tobacco use, some health questions). She seems fine, if a bit plump (not that I should talk, of course). Nothing that should cause a problem though, so I start asking her questions about her plan, what she likes and what she doesn’t like about it. I then suggested a certain carrier, and she quickly (and firmly) told me not to bother with them: they declined her several years ago.
Um, I thought you told me that there were no health issues?
There aren’t, Melody reassured me, just a rare genetic blood condition.
Oh, is that all? Golly, that shouldn’t be too much of a problem; after all, your current carrier took you.
You what?
You don’t think they asked if you’d ever been turned down for insurance, and why?
I see. And you didn’t bother to tell them?
Uh hunh.
Well, I happen to represent that carrier as well, and I can assure you that they did, in fact, ask if you’ve been declined. So you submitted a fraudulent application. Well, let’s see if we can get you back on the right side of the track now, with a carrier that knows your complete history. As it is, you don’t really have insurance now, so it seems a shame to pay even more for it.
I beg your pardon? You do have insurance now; if you break your leg the blood part doesn’t matter? Okay, well, it’s really not my job to argue with you, so I’ll check around, see if there’s any carriers that will offer you coverage, and get back with you as soon as possible.
Happy Holidays to you, too, ma’am, and PLEASE stay well.
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