Postal Service Or Sender?

May 13, 2022– Michael Marsh

In our workers' compensation claims unit in Montana, 100% of our payments are sent hard copy through the mail; Indemnity payments to workers for lost wage benefits, Medical payments to providers and hospitals and a slew of nearly 1,000 external service providers and vendors.  Since the roll out of the pandemic in 2020, staff has seen a marked increase in undelivered, lost and delayed mail.  Where there was one or two lost payments per year prior to the pandemic, we have had over 20 instances of lost / unreceived payments in 2022.

It's human nature I guess to complain about "those people at the Post Office". Right? Easier to assume the cause and complain that look closer and find the actual genesis of the issue. We teach our new staff and try our best to live the motto "INVESTIGATION.COMMUNICATION.RESOLUTION.®" in our claims handling activities. Even we this year however have been caught up in the 'blame the Post Office' routine.

So we had to laugh today. We had been waiting for an insurance bill from March. Fortunately we were able to get a copy online and pay it timely well before it was late.  And then the humor. The bill arrived in the mail today with a DUE DATE of 04/01/2022. Immediately the 'blame the Post Office' routine began.

To see how long those evil postal workers (ha ha ha) had been playing with the bill, I looked at the postmark. And to my surprise and delight, the postmark was only four (4) days ago. The postage was placed on the envelope on May 9 for a bill that was presumably due April 1.

We are still laughing at how silly our complaints about "the mail system" were when the actual situation was caused by the sender or their external mail contractor.

Takeaway: It is important to investigate claims and all situations in life. Even the small stuff should not be subjected to assumptions...without a little digging and questioning you might not ever know if it was the Postal Service or the Sender...or the cause of the injury.

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