In my continuing efforts to get completely separated from government service (or “The Man”), I have finally managed to sort out health insurance. It may surprise some of you that it took over a month from my separation date (30 September) to finally get myself transferred over to Danny’s insurance, but if it does then you have clearly never had to work through a government HR office, and for that I envy you.

Before resigning, I filled out the paperwork to notify my insurer Blue Cross Blue Shield (BC/BS) that I was quitting my job and wanted to end my individual health plan and be transferred to my husband’s plan, also with BC/BS, which had to be changed from an individual to a family plan. Seems fairly simple, and required only two forms to be filled out. That was 26 September.

On 30 October, as I sat in the offices of the Washington Radiology Associates about to have my 20 week sonogram, I realized I didn’t know if I should submit my old BC/BS card or give them Danny’s card. I called BC/BS, who advised that they still had received no paperwork from my insurer telling them that I had resigned, and that therefore my plan was technically still active, but really only until the end of that day, which was the 31st day of my 31 day grace period. Not good news for someone in the middle of maternity care, which only gets more expensive as it goes on…

Thankfully, I have always found BC/BS representatives to be very helpful, and they assured me that since I was just switching from one account with them to another account, they would make sure that one way or another I did not end up paying for any of my allowable medical expenses.

My HR department, however, was a different story. After several increasing nasty phone calls to the insurance branch of my HR office (getting an outside phone number for them alone took a couple of hours), I convinced them that they did indeed need to take care of the situation IMMEDIATELY. This was, of course, once I finally got them to a) answer my calls and b) call me back when they were not at their desk, which appeared to be most of the time.

This literally took weeks of calling, and Danny finally advised he would be more than happy to sue the entire U.S. government for any unpaid expenses, pain, suffering, and mental anguish suffered by his pregnant wife if they did not sort it out. Miraculously, it was at exactly that moment that they managed to find my form and locate a working fax machine to get said form to BC/BS, since the form they claimed two weeks previously to have mailed had yet to traverse the expanse of Washington D.C. I barely managed to refrain from observing that I could have WALKED the form across the city in less time.

*Deep breath.*

This leaves only my retirement funds and my Thrift Savings Account left to transfer over to some sort of private sector account, and I will finally be really and truly separated from the government. Since I think that both of those things require no action on the part of my former employer, I’m hoping maybe they’ll be slightly less painful.

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