All mixed up

To err is human and this saying has been brought home to us by two incidents in the past few weeks. The first one involved incorrect entries in the group certificates given to us by our employers. There was an entry in one column that was reported as a separate income but was actually already included in our gross income. This meant the amount of tax withheld from our salary each pay period was not nearly enough and that we would have to pay more tax. In fact, hubby and I have almost a grand tax payable when we filed our returns last month.

The good news about this PAYG amendment is that we probably would not have to pay as much tax as originally computed. The bad news is that if we decide to go back to the tax agents for them to take care of the amendments, we would have to pay $45 each for the appointment. This would also mean more documentation and the possibility of mistakes and confusion cropping up in the future. What a hassle! However, there’s really not much we can do except do the extra work ourselves. We decided we’d just print the amendment form from the tax office’s website, fill that out, attach the necessary documents and hope that everything goes well after that.

Another instance when someone else’s mistake created more work for us involved our health care claims history. I consulted with my osteopath a fortnight ago and had my claim for insurance coverage rejected by our health care provider. Both my osteopath and I were puzzled, I’ve only had five consultations with her previously and there’s no way I’ve already reached the claims limit for the year. Aside from that, there doesn’t seem to be any other logical reason why my claim should be declined. I SMSed hubby, who coincidentally also had an osteopathy consultation earlier that day, if his claim had also been declined. He said no, his claim went through without any problems.

First thing I did when I got back from the osteopath’s office was to check our health insurance account online. It was then that I discovered that my previous consultations with my osteopath have been entered into hubby’s name. Looking at our claims record, you’d think that hubby goes to two different osteopaths twice a week, most of them even occuring within a day of each other!

I quickly composed an email requesting an amendment of our claims history and asking for the reason why my claim was declined on that day. After several email exchanges, we found out that my osteopath had been incorrectly entering ‘1’ on the HICAPS system, thinking that I am the primary policy holder. In fact, she should have entered ‘2’ to indicate that the claim should be for me, the secondary policy holder. I had to ask my osteopath for a letter stating that it was me who consulted with her all along with a list of the consultation dates and send it to our provider.

As to the question of why my claim was rejected, it didn’t have anything to do with reaching the yearly maximum claim amount allowable at all. The claim was declined because they only allow one claim per person per day. Since hubby had already claimed for that day with his own osteopathy session and because my osteopath is trying to claim under his name as usual, the request for payment was declined. I was asked by the health care insurer to fill out a claim form, send them the receipt and post it all via snailmail to have my last claim honoured.

When I checked our online records today, the request for the amendment of the claims had gone through yesterday. All fine and dandy? Well, no, there was still one incorrect entry on the adjustment they made. Now they have charged hubby’s last osteopathy session to me and have totally ignored my separate claim for that same day. Argh, why is this so difficult!?!

All this grief just because someone else wasn’t paying attention. Perhaps I should send these people a bill for lost time and productivity and then maybe they’ll be more careful next time.

Published in: on September 5, 2007 at 12:21 pm  Leave a Comment