The last two weeks have made me very concerned that as the economy worsens, I’m going to have to spend more and more time fighting companies for no good reason.
The first incident that causes me concern is the amount of time I’ve had to spend getting Amazon to fix a billing problem. They screwed up and didn’t apply my gift certificate balance to an order, and as result, I’ve had to send four emails and make one phone call, not to mention endure a lot of frustration.
I’ve had hundreds of uneventful orders with Amazon. I’ve even contacted them in the past and gotten relatively prompt responses with satisfactory resolutions. I’m quite disturbed at the fact that they’re not responding to emails, and that even after I called and spoke to a person who directly contacted the Gift Certificates department while I was on the phone to ensure that my situation was rectified, I still didn’t get an email telling me that things would be taken care of until the 48 hour deadline they had imposed upon themselves had passed. Even worse is the fact that after initially fixing the problem, they made things worse by reversing the correction, but incompletely and in a way that left me $7.14 short of where I had started. I’m afraid that this is a sign of things to come and that the headaches of shopping with Amazon aren’t going to be worth the convenience or savings.
The second incident that worries me is a letter I got from my health insurance company, denying a test that was performed last May. The letter doesn’t indicate why it took them so long to deny the claim, and now I have to spend time and energy filing an appeal, which may or may not be granted, for a medical test that my doctor obviously felt was necessary.
A friend who works for a doctor in his billing office has been telling me for a few weeks now that insurance companies seem to be automatically denying claims in the hope of saving money. She says their reasons for denying claims include “the information wasn’t properly lined up in the box on the form.” She assumes that the insurance companies are hoping most patients don’t appeal, and that claims will be processed if they are appealed – but for some reason that’s not making me feel better, given that my test was done back in May.
These incidents make me worry that I’m going to have spend my future time making sure my family gets the money it is due and keeps the money it already has – rather than being able to spend my time saving money by spending less and making money via this blog and other ventures. I really hope this isn’t a sign of things to come – but I must admit, I’m not very optimistic.