tsubasahome: (custom doll)
[personal profile] tsubasahome
I have been on the phone with these bastards for five hours and nobody will help me.

I signed up for one of their plans on December 23rd of last year. Naturally, because of their backlog they didn't send me any correspondence about paying my first premium until the middle of January, even though they promised me retroactive coverage until Jan. 1. I paid my first premium via their one-time payment form that they created specifically for new applicants on January 17th, right when I got it in the mail. Unfortunately, with this form, there is no way to edit your payment information once you submit it. I realized that once I submitted my payment information that I might have made a typo in my bank account number. I decided to wait a bit and if the payment hadn't posted in 10 days to call their helpline and get it straightened out. The due date was January 31st.

I called their customer service line on January 28th and told the lady on the other end that I may have made an error in my bank account information. I said that I knew they were backlogged but I wanted to make sure that my payment wasn't being held up because of my error. The lady seemed a bit annoyed and assured me that my payment had been processed just fine, and to not worry about it not posting right away because they were backlogged. I took her words as a reason to stop worrying and my insurance card arrived in the mail the next day.

A few weeks later, I got a rather hefty bill in the mail for February to March. They put me on a bimonthly plan without my knowledge...! But no matter, I sat down and tried to sign up on their website to pay it last night. I couldn't sign up. They said I wasn't in their database. I started to panic, knowing my payment was due in a week, and tried to pay over the phone. It was then that I found out that my insurance had been cancelled.

I called their help line this morning and found out that my coverage was terminated due to non-payment of my January premium. They said there was an error in my bank account information and the payment was returned as "not found". The person I talked to seemed sympathetic when I told her that I had contacted Anthem a month ago and asked them to fix my bank account information only to be told that there was no error, that everything was fine and my payment had been processed. She said she would forward me to a health plan adviser and they would see if they could reinstate my plan, as it wasn't like I had been delinquent on purpose. She also said there was a note on my file proving that I had in fact called them a month ago to fix the error.

I was put on hold for 2 hours and then disconnected.

I tried calling the first number and there was a new person on the line who seemed to not even understand what I was talking about. She kept thinking I was from Mexico even though I told her I was from CT, and I have an Irish name and don't have the faintest trace of an accent so why the hell did she think I was from Mexico? She put me on hold for a half hour and I hung up on her because I couldn't even communicate my personal information to her without her messing it up, let alone get help. I tried the health plan adviser line again and prepared myself for a long wait. I was put on hold for 90 minutes. When I finally got through, the person on the other end said she would see if I could just pay my January premium over the phone to get my plan reinstated. She put me on hold, but when she came back she had forgotten what state I was from or even what I was calling for. She said she was sending me back to their CT hotline. And back I go to the first call center!

I got a man on the line this time...who informed me that the lady who just forwarded me to him was, in fact, the only person who could help me and she had passed the buck to him because she didn't want to do the work. He said that she WAS the CT number, and his call center was not in CT! He said he would reconnect me to her and I told him I had been on the phone for five hours. The signal started to break up and I knew I would just be put on hold for another 2 hours, so I hung up and had a good cry.

What the hell is the matter with these people?!

Date: 2014-03-01 05:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nagasvoice.livejournal.com
I don't know of fast alternatives (suing them comes to mind if your bill is high enough) but calling your state insurance commissioner's office and asking for a patient advocate may be in order. A lot of state legislators' field offices handle lots of these kinds of fall-in-the-cracks sort of problems, and it's surprising how often a call from a state Senator or a Representative's field rep will just sort things out nicely. However, this varies with the legislator quite a lot--some of them aren't into helping regular people, some of them are much better at hiring competent field office staff, and some of them are cracking good at it themselves.
Edited Date: 2014-03-01 05:21 am (UTC)

Date: 2014-03-01 05:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tsubasahome.livejournal.com
The only good that's come of this mess is that they never got a dime from me(since they never processed my January payment and I was unable to pay my February/March payment online due to my policy being cancelled) Thank God I didn't mail them a check for the February/March premium instead of trying to pay online/via phone! They would have cleaned me out of almost $700!

I still haven't gotten it straightened out. The last person I talked to said she didn't have the authority. LOL! She said her supervisor will call me on Monday. If I don't get this straightened out I am just going to ditch Anthem altogether. The only thing preventing me from doing it right now is the fact that they're leading me to believe they will reactivate my account once I play phone tag with enough people and I'm afraid they will reactivate it without my knowledge and I'll wind up with two insurance plans!

Date: 2014-03-06 02:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zalem.livejournal.com
Since they are being assholes and terminated you anyway, maybe you should shop around on your state's health care exchange site for another, more reputable health insurer. It's pretty disgusting how they are treating you. >_

Date: 2014-03-08 01:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tsubasahome.livejournal.com
Tempting, but there are only two other insurers available on the CT marketplace. Everybody else pulled out. I made up my mind to drop Anthem if they didn't fix things in a week...after talking to 7 different people only one of them knew which was the proper department to send me to(payments, not a health plan adviser like they all tried to send me to), and it turns out that I had to contact my state's health care exchange, not Anthem, to get reinstated! Why is it that only one person knew that? I've seen better trained employees working at a college work study job!

My state's health care exchange just sent me 7 letters about my re-enrollment, 3 of which are duplicates. Unfortunately, I won't get my coverage back until April 1st. Sigh...

EDIT: And, of course, the Anthem employee who was supposed to call me never did. Didn't get a response to my customer service e-mail, either. I had to call them myself.
Edited Date: 2014-03-08 01:02 am (UTC)

Date: 2014-03-01 11:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] leviosa8.livejournal.com

I can't believe they have the nerve to play with people's health like that. I sincerely hope you can get it sorted out soon. Maybe spamming them via Fax, email, website? Stating that your january phonecall WAS registered. I hate hate hate sorting things out via the phone. Usually it is for electricity or phone issues, not the health!!

Date: 2014-03-02 04:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tsubasahome.livejournal.com
They've done this to so many people...they actually got sued by the state of California for something similar. I think the plan is to get me so frustrated that I just give up. I talked to five different people yesterday and even though most of them seemed to feel bad for me, none of them helped me. They just kept passing me on to the next person, who would put me on hold for hours, then disconnect me and when I finally managed to reach them, they'd say it was somebody else's job to help me. Cancelling my insurance because of a typographical error is actually illegal...and I'm doubly angry because I called them and asked them to check on my payment and they told me everything was fine, then cancelled me anyway!

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