Blue Cross Blue Shield Rhode Island - The Worst-- Without A Doubt.
health insurance for "domestic partner" - Complaint
PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND -- When I got hired at my current job, I was pleased to find out that Blue Cross Blue Shield of Rhode Island allows girlfriends/boyfriends/common law spouses to receive healthcare coverage through someone else. My girlfriend has been without insurance for far too long, and this looked like the perfect opportunity to finally get her some. And she needs it, too-- she's got varying medical conditions that are far too expensive to be paid for without insurance. Nothing life threatening, mind you-- but they're conditions nonetheless.
When a year passes, that's when you're allowed to put a spouse/significant other on your insurance as a "domestic partener." Great. BCBSRI mailed me a list of documents they'd need to prove that we weren't trying to screw them over (as an aside, this took nearly a month to arrive in my mailbox, despite the fact that they're about 4 miles from my house). The list had 6 or 8 items on it, only two of which were required for proof. No problem. I picked the "prove you've been living together for over a year" and "get a notarized relationship agreement" options. I mailed them a copy of my lease (that she and I are both listed on) as well as a document I wrote up and had notarized, stating that we've been in relationship for the past 36 months. Everything is going fine, and my girlfriend will have insurance within a week or two. Or so I thought.
Two weeks went by and I didn't hear a peep from BCBSRI. I finally realized that something probably got messed up, so I called. They informed me that her coverage was denied. When I asked why, I was told it was because I "didn't supply the sufficient documentation," which, as you know by reading this, is untrue. So I asked what I should do, and they told me to send it all again. So I did.
I call them again, explaining my whole story. I'm now told that what I mailed them wasn't enough. They need something like a joint checking account or joint ownership of a vehicle. I told them that was insane, because the paper I have says "Here's 8 options, PICK TWO." And that's exactly what I did. They ask me to send the stuff again. So I did.
Another week goes by with no notice from them whatsoever, so I call again. This time, the story is different: they claimed that they never got the notarized agreement, but they did have the lease. This is false. They were mailed in the same envelope, so unless some employee lost the paper (which is my guess), they have both documents. The guy asks me if I can fax over the contract again. Once I do that, he'll put in a request to get everything done quickly and he'll be in touch. I faxed over the agreement and never heard from him again.
Yesterday, I called again after I got a letter saying that she was denied coverage. The reason for her denial was that (you guessed it) I provided insufficient documentation. Again, this is entirely untrue. I spoke with a customer service representative and explained the situation for the billionth time, and he said that he'd put a note on it marked "urgent" and he'd call me back in the morning (today). I never got that call. About an hour ago I called again and really gave the guy a hard time-- I need this fixed not now, not yesterday, but THREE MONTHS AGO. "Immediately" doesn't begin to describe how quickly this needs to be done. He said he has no say in the matter, which is true, but he'd put another note on it to get it expedited. He informed me that since she was denied coverage (the reason doesn't matter), I might have to file an appeals claim that could take up to a month to be resolved. I explained to him that an appeal was absolutely not even close to a viable option, and that this has to be fixed NOW. We don't have another month to sit around and wait. He says he's going to have someone call me in the morning, but I refuse to believe that.
The long and short of it is this: BCBSRI is an abysmal company, full of people who A) have minimal-to-no-intelligence, and B) apparently never, ever speak to one another. What they're doing (and continue to do) to my girlfriend and I is unacceptable, and you can bet if I had another insurance option, I'd leave them in a heartbeat.