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My rant of the day – Rich people suck

I’m sure a lot of you know, I work in the insurance industry. When a major disaster hits like hurricane Sandy, we all pull together to help out, even though I’m in auto insurance. Over the past week we got over 40,000 claims and at last report, they’re still coming in by the thousands. I’m not one of the brave scrambling to fly out there and help people face to face. Those of us left in the office (and they took a third of my dept) are left trying to somehow absorb all the work of those who were deployed and keep up with the busier holiday season, all while helping to field some of those incoming property claims to obtain more information so we can help triage the worst claims as best we can.

Here’s what I’ve learned this week. Rich people suck. Let me preface this by saying, I’ve talked to so many nice people who are just grateful that they survived the storm and their friends and families are safe and sound. Most people have been very understanding of the process, and we tell them they don’t have to wait on us to get their repairs started, just keep receipts and pictures of the damages. And then there’s the rich and entitled who expect us to magically have someone on their doorstep by the next day to replace their entire roof because a few shingles are missing and they don’t want a simple repair done.

I spoke to a NY woman yesterday who bitched because I wouldn’t escalate her claim and help her find “emergency relocation assistance” because she was displaced by flooding water. Okay, let’s define her emergency displacement a little more here. The very first thing she makes a point of telling me is that her condo is valued at 2.5 million dollars. The woman and her kids were evacuated and she has learned that her condo building did flood in the basement and 1st floor. Her unit is on the 5th floor and is currently without power. She has a flooded storage space in the basement, spoiled food in the fridge and her fridge leaked onto the kitchen floor, which may *or may not* have damage to it. How does she know this? Because she made her nanny go check the damage and clean it up. She isn’t on the street with her two kids, she’s staying at her brother’s house in New Jersey, but she doesn’t *want* to stay there, she wants to stay in the city because it’s more convenient. I tried explaining to her that we’re doing the best we can with a disaster of this magnitude, but I can’t escalate her claim because that’s reserved for real emergencies. To put it in perspective, I have a guy who’s living in his car because his bedroom and living room are flooded with backed up sewage. I have a guy who can’t stay in his car because there’s a roof on top of it. He can’t tell if it’s his roof or his neighbor’s roof because they’re both completely off.

I’m pretty sure if this woman can afford a 2.5 mil condo, she can make some arrangements to pay for a hotel stay if she *needs* to be in the city. But instead she chose to bitch and moan to me about how inconvenient this all is for her because I couldn’t guarantee we could reimburse her for something like that and she’d have to wait to talk to her adjuster to go over coverage. I’ve never felt *less* empathy towards a human being in my life. If it was possible for me to de-escalate her claim, I would have.

So here I am, up at 5am on a Saturday, too stressed to sleep, thinking about sucky people and all the stuff I have to cram into my weekend because I am so wiped out every day after work. I know, I’m grateful I wasn’t in the hurricane myself, and I’m grateful to have a good job. But I swear, my final sixty days at work are shaping up to be the most sucktastic in my six years in the industry. Here’s to hoping I can survive the stress!


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4 Responses to My rant of the day – Rich people suck

  1. You need to do what they do in the horror movies. Write a character just like her. Set her up for a fall. And then have her get eaten by a great white shark swimming through the streets of NYC left over from the rising flood waters. Or as I always say, you can always kill them off :-)

    • Lisa Olsen says:

      Heh, that’s a great idea! I sould say entitled people suck, not rich people suck. Everybody has been super nice in the calls since that day, but boy, that lady sure took the cake!

  2. Diana Graves says:

    I work at a hotel, so I know what you mean. When people are used to getting everything their way, they kind of loose their minds when reality puts up a road block.

    I’m glad everyone’s been much nicer since then. I couldn’t imagine having your job. Though, I can see your compassion coming through your writing. :-)

    • Lisa Olsen says:

      Thanks Diana. I have to say, other than that one day people have been super nice to deal with. We still have a third of our team deployed out there, so the work continues!

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