Dear Ms. Insurance Agent: Math Matters!

Dear Ms. Insurance Agent: Math Matters!

Hello Ms. Customer Service Award Winner of the Year:


When I called you today to ask you about adding some coverage to my car, your voice was polite; some might say it was as smooth as silk. Which was in a small way, refreshing and nice to hear.


Unfortunately, whoever hired you for your perfect telephone voice failed to notice that you didn’t have any brains between your ears, which is much, much more important than your soothing voice.


At first, you were fine; you gave me the correct charge for my added coverage. Then, you told me that my one-time fee of $25 was going to be spread over 8 months, the phone call took a decidedly ominous turn for the worse.


I asked if I could pay it at one time.


“No.” Your voice was still polite because you thought you still had the best of me, “it’ll be spread out over 12 months.”


Already, your math was starting to sound a little fuzzy. I asked how the number switched from 8 to 12.


“It’s too complicated for me to tell you because you changed your billing system.”


I tried to keep my voice calm and asked you how much I would owe each month.


“Right now, you pay $42 a month, but in June you will pay $78.”


The fuzzy math was getting even fuzzier. I’m sorry I had to put you through it, but I did lose my cool a little bit at this point in the conversation.


“That doesn’t sound quite right. Are you sure?”


Math was obviously not your strong point, so I asked for the billing department.


“I’m in the billing department.”


I began to get frustrated. How was a one-time fee of $25 now $36 extra a month? I started to think you were intentionally trying to rip me off, but even then, I couldn’t believe that you would really be that stupid. Either way, it wasn’t looking good for you: a person with rudimentary math skills or the worst con artist ever.


“So, how many payments do I have left?”


You repeated that it was truthfully confusing because I had changed my payment plan. I started to worry about the training in the billing department. Did the employees have to have a high school diploma to work there? Was I talking to the insurance equivalent of Britney Spears?


Fortunately for you, my insurance company doesn’t have a complaint department. Fortunately for me, no one else I’ve spoken to at that particular insurance agency is quite as dumb as you are.