July 11th, 2008

Firefly - Not All Who Wander

e-Bill Pay

My credit union has an e-bill pay service that is actually contracted through a fairly popular online bill pay system (which is a fiasco sign-up story in and of itself but that's like 4 years old and not that interesting).

Well, yesterday I scheduled two payments for MONDAY. The 14th. I get paid today at 5pm, so obviously I didn't schedule them for today and I even double checked the dates as I was confirming the payments.

SO why did my account get overdrafted this morning???

So, I call my credit union to see if they can reverse the OD fee. They tell me to call the e-bill pay service about the payment being put through early.

First I can't find the phone number to contact them on the site ANYWHERE. Finally after about 10 minutes of searching I find the number and sit on hold for a bit.

Mind you, this is not a company I'm very familiar with, and therefore I don't know how much I should really be trusting them. Their website wouldn't be hard to forge, and now the guy is asking me for ALL my information. Over the phone. Like first he wants my account number (which only sort of makes sense if he's through my credit union, but I had to call a different company??) and then he wants me to give my whole social security number to him. I hesitated and then responded with "I'm sorry I'm really not even sure what company I'm calling and I'm not really comfortable giving you that information." He sort of made a disgusted noise in his throat and then asked me for other info (address, mostly).

I mean, I guess if it was just confirming my identity that's one thing... but generally they say "I just need to confirm your identity so if you could answer some security questions for me," or some shorter version of the same. They don't just start asking for full account and SS numbers. O.o

Then the guy is trying to argue with me about when the payment was scheduled for.

Ok, even if 4 and 1 look sort of the same, I actually clicked in the calendar because I typed in the wrong year the first time, so I'm 100% positive I clicked on MONDAY (versus FRIDAY!), and I had double checked the dates when the confirmation page came up (because actually this isn't the first time the date I pick is not the date they schedule the payment for, it's just the first time they picked a day before and not after).

It didn't take long before he gave in and said ok but I never got an apology, just a muttered "weird."

Then the service wasn't so bad. He called my credit union (after I gave him the number... if you have a contract with a credit union, shouldn't you have their number easily accessible?) and explained that the money was taken from my account today but the money won't be there til 5pm and could they please wave the fee for me.

Credit union rep said she needed the customer to call and I said I was on the line, so she got my info... NOT asking for my full social but the last 4 digits... and then she says "Happy Birthday, *my mom's first name*!"

Now ok my mom is on my account with me for a number of reasons. Most notably because she opened the account for me when I was 2. But also so if there's an emergency she can get to my money and most especially so she can transfer money into my account (though we have it set so she can't transfer money out of it). But when I've just told you MY name, confirmed the SSN of the main account holder--ME--and that pulls up the account with my name... why would you assume it's my mom on the phone?

I'm assuming here that they have a popup window that comes up if the account is accessed on the birthday of either party, but still, a little common sense would be great.

So she says she'll put in a fee reversal request and gets my phone number to call me back this afternoon. She hangs up, I thank the dude from the e-bill pay service, and he says good luck and everything's fine, right?

But then I get a call back from the CU rep. Apparently they need to have the negative balance paid before they can submit the fee reversal request. That doesn't make me very comfortable, because I've had problems with an actual bank *ahemnationalcitycough* telling me if I paid the negative balance that they could NOT reverse the fee. Yes, I see that they are different institutions and would have different policies, but I am frankly uncomfortable with the idea of having to pay them and then get my money back. I trust them but... they're still a financial institution and this is "easy screw" territory.

Anyway I said I get paid at 5pm so I'd be in to do that this evening. She said that's fine and she works tomorrow so he'll leave a note in her drawer to remind herself to get that taken care of. I'll probably talk to the branch manager of the one I go to tonight and try and get it taken care of immediately, but here's hoping.

That could all have gone a lot worse and I'm still waiting on the outcome but still, not the stellar service I'm used to experiencing with my CU.
To do - Survive

More frustration

Sooo... progress report on this post.

I went to my apartment management and submitted copies of my insurance explanation of benefits forms (in the massive cleanup of the mold I lost track of a few of the actual medical bills, although I explained I could get copies if necessary), copies of my pay stubs from the weeks I missed work plus one from later when I was almost back at full strength, a spreadsheet breaking down everything and giving totals, and a signed letter from me fully explaining what happened and asking for some form of reimbursement.

Management accepted the forms, but wanted a note from my doctor as well. Totally understandable, so I called him up and left a message asking for a signed statement that I had been sick from the mold. I got a call later that day from one of his nurses saying that he wouldn't do it because he couldn't prove that it was the mold that made me sick. Uh, hi, one freaking night away from it and I was better. *grumble* Still, he never saw the mold. I can respect his ideals even if I don't agree. I asked if he could at least write me something stating the dates I was treated. The response, again through a nurse, "He said that you should probably just get a lawyer." ....What? No, seriously, what? First, I don't need a lawyer yet, and if I could get a note from him I likely wouldn't need one at all. Second, even if I did get a lawyer, guess what? They'd need something signed from my doctor to be effective!

So, plan B. I still had pictures of the mold, so I got some of the best ones printed out. (I'm at work and my camera is at home, otherwise I'd post them. Edited post with links to pictures.) I typed up a letter on behalf of my doctor stating the dates I was treated and my symptoms, and I was going to write a note asking please, please, even if the mold pictures don't convince you to write something saying that was the problem, would you at least sign the letter with the dates?

Except in the interim, my doctor went out of town. He won't be back until August 4th.

But! There is very good news. I discovered one bag of trash that miraculously hadn't made it out to the dumpster. It had several items with very good samples of the mold. I have a friend getting her masters in botany from the local university. She's going to get one of her professers to grow a culture and identify the sample. From there I can get the symptoms associated with that type of mold (from the professor himself, I hope), and then I'll see if I can convince the staff in my doctor's office to give me a copy of my records showing my symptoms that I can then give to the apartment management.

No, I won't be going back to that doctor. It's the last straw in a line of less-than-stellar treatment. He's fine when I physically see him, but when it comes to things outside of examination and prescription writing it's so freaking hard to get him to do anything.

As a final note, between medical bills and lost wages, the total amount of money I lost due to the mold was $1,919.60. Even if I were to take out the amount I got from my supplemental short-term disability insurance it's about $1,400. There's no way in hell I'm letting this rest until there's some form of compensation.

EDIT: Despite work filters, I managed to get the links for the mold pictures I posted on my personal LJ.

Before the baseboards were removed.
After the baseboards were removed.

That space was right beneath my bed, as a note.
  • Current Mood
    cranky cranky

Why yes, we have no sandwiches...

UCLA has recently completed building a new hospital (named after Ronald Reagan - oh, the irony), so they now have a new hospital cafeteria and an old hospital cafeteria. The old cafeteria has had "reduced services" since the new one opened. This is a bad service on part of UCLA, not any of the people involved. And it's pretty small, but it really annoyed me.

Collapse )

Teal deer: You can't get a freshly made tuna fish sandwich anywhere on the UCLA campus. The only vegetarian sandwich options are 1) two-day-old sandwiches kept in a fridge in the new hospital cafeteria or 2) over-priced crazy-veggie sandwiches. It could just be me, but that's pretty strange for a very large hospital's cafeteria.
tire swing

Bank screw-ups

So today I decide to do some grocery shopping. My checkbook says I have $200 available plus $631 from the check my husband deposited yesterday afternoon that SHOULD be credited, but I'm not planning to spend more than maybe $150. I should also still have (but not showing in the checkbook) $240 for my electric bill that I just mailed off this morning. (Note: I deduct everything I spend from my checkbook the moment I write the check/swipe the debit card).

Imagine my surprise when I go to pay for my groceries and my check card is declined. Luckily, my bank is right in front of the grocery store, so I go over there and explain what the problem is. The teller says I have a balance of $56 and my husband's paycheck isn't showing yet but should be there by tonight. I don't question this because I looked at the deposit receipt and everything was right - account #, amount, etc. I DO however question why I only have $56 in my account when I should have over $400, but I decide to go home and compare my checkbook to my account online and figure it out myself. I honestly thought it was my mistake, since the deposit ticket my husband brought home from the bank was all correct.

Collapse )

It got worse, then better

As I've said before, I've had some strange back problems and have issues with getting an appointment with my doctor. This included the secretary telling me that my symptoms were not important. Ironically enough it turns out that it might be scoIiosis and I need an x-ray.  finally managed to get one an appointment for last week, and specified to the secretary I could not in any way get to an appointment before 5:00pm. Evil Secretary told me I was booked for 7:15pm.

I called the day of to double check and was shocked she told me my appointment was at 4:15pm. I told her there must have been a mistake, as this was the same Evil Secretary I had booked with in the first place. I ended up having to cancel that appointment. How the heck did she book me for 4:15 then tell me my appointment was at 7:15? She kept insisting she had never booked me for 7:15pm, and that I was always booked for 4:15pm.

A few days ago I finally sucked it up and called back to rebook. The secretary was new and completely different. She was very sweet, double checked everything I said and gave me a time that was right for me. It looks like they've fired the old one and gotten this really nice one instead. I just hope this appointment is at the time it is supposed to be. Especially since I'm going backpacking at the beginning of September.

Fortunately thanks to my RMT and discovering a new sport (rock climbing) my pinched nerve hasn't bothered me in the slightest and my left side is getting stronger. Still, I need this x-ray, and I've been waiting over a month for an appointment.

A Wal-Mart WTF? ...

It's not really bad service, just incredibly bizarre (to me at least). I'm finished shopping at the Wal-mart, pushing my cart out to the car when I make eye contact with a cart attendant. I think I did a smile and nod sort of combo, and then he asks "How are you?" I say "I'm good, how are you?"

It's at this point that I may have stepped into the twilight zone, because the guy starts ranting about how this is his day job and how he pushes carts for a living. This goes on for a few minutes (at least while I get to my car and load my stuff). I'm flabbergasted - I have no clue how to respond to this, so I just get to my car and leave.

I was probably rude because I didn't say anything to him after I asked how he was doing, but I was honestly speechless. Like I said, not bad service, just uncomfortably weird.

EDIT: I realize that this is probably not the best place to put it - is there a community where this would fit better - maybe one for general WTF moments?

More bad hair.

I'm an oldie with C_S, but I've lurked here for the past two months or so :] I like to think I'm an extremely patient and understanding person (maybe to a fault), so even though I've had bad service in the past 2 months I've been lurking, I have to be REALLY pissed about something to post. Et voila, my first post :]

I went to Trade Secrets to get my hair done for prom. I've been a tomboy all my life (went to grade 8 grad in a pantsuit and ponytail), and have never had my hair done before and never plan on doing it again. I tried to convince my mom it was a waste of money, but she was willing to pay for it so I agreed to get it done.

Collapse )