Friday, April 26, 2013

Lemme educate you (again)

Obviously, even though I have posted along these lines in the past, it needs to be said again...and again...and again.  So, here we go.  We all get bills.  It's part of being an adult.  Yes, it blows, but yes we owe them - usually. When you call about a bill, it's probably a good idea to be a civil adult.  That said, first point of education, here's an example of how to quickly get your dumb ass sent straight to the collection agency without passing go...

Sample phone call...

Me: "(insert place of employment here)"

Asshat:  "This billing?"

Me:  "Yes it is.  How can I help you?"

Asshat:  "My account number is (insert numbers here).  Why do I have a bill?"

Me:  "Your insurance left you $X as a copay and $X as a deductible."

Asshat:  "Why the fuck didn't you people tell me I was going to have a bill before this surgery?  I wouldn't have had this surgery if you would have told me."

Me:  "I'm very sorry, however, we do not have access to your information prior to your surgery.  We do not know whether or not you have a deductible or copay."

Asshat:  "Well it's your fucking job.  You should have fucking told me."

Me:  "Actually, when you receive your paperwork prior to the surgery, it advises you to contact us."

Asshat:  "I didn't get any paperwork."

Me:  "And when you were admitted to the hospital, you had to sign paperwork in regard to anesthesia and anesthesia billing."

Asshat:  "I don't remember signing anything.  Why the fuck didn't you people tell me?"

Me:  "It's actually your responsibility to contact your insurance to find out whether the services are covered."

Asshat:  "NO IT'S NOT."

Me:  "The insurance is under your wife.  When she signed up for it, the human resources department at her employer most likely gave her information in regard to what your copays and deductible are for surgeries.  This is not information we have access to prior to your services."

Asshat:  "Well you're way down on the list.  I don't have that kind of money and since you didn't fucking tell me, it's not my fucking problem."


Me:  "Well, I can send it to collections right now if you'd like?"

Asshat:  "Geez, if you're going to be a bitch...."

The phone call ended at this point, because I hung up.

LESSON - If you want the billing people to be even remotely sympathetic, DON'T BE A FUCKING PRICK.  I am more than willing to work with people when they are decent human beings.  If you're going to be a douche, fuck you.  Those are the moments when your account WILL be immediately sent to collection and start destroying your credit.

1.  It is NOT the billing department of ANY doctor's office/hospital/specialist responsibility to tell you what your copay and deductible are.

2.  It is NOT the billing department's responsibility to determine if the services are covered.

3. It is YOUR insurance.  YOU are responsible for finding out all of the above information.

4.  Copays and deductibles are YOUR responsibility.

5.  DON'T wait for 4 months before you call on a bill.  Most billing offices are willing to work with you if you're going through hard times.  Some will even write off bills or substantially reduce the amount owed.

All right, that's your lesson for the day.

1 comment:

  1. Good lesson. I don't know the percentage I have to pay. I know I have a $400 deductible each year and a $700 co-pay. Do I ever come close. Last year I hit the deductible. I'd prefer not to do that again, thanks. Love you.