Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Checks and Balances that Don't Work

I could rail on about the health care system, the abuse of the Emergency Room, the sad state of immigration and the job market ad nauseam, but I won't. Instead I will say I find it incredibly frustrating when incompetence on a company's part leads to me having to jump through massive hoops to get something corrected when a simple warning could have stopped all the drama.

As many of you know I am somewhat recently marred (advice...never change your name) and a freelance writer. One of my main contract sites, I won't name names, but I should, recently shut down my account (no warning) because my IRS data does not match my name. First, I have processed the paperwork and my name change is forthcoming but I cannot control what they have in the computer. Second, I have worked for you for over a year, why is this coming up now? Third, why didn't you warn me, ask for paperwork or at least give me a week to see where we are? And finally, I specifically kept my old name in the system because it hadn't been changed yet and asked to be published under a different name, you are the ones who decided in a fit of craziness to make all the names match. Pen names have been around since the dawn of time, Mark Twain, and now it is suddenly a problem?

Now, the IRS has no problem taking my tax money or understanding that I am married. I have a marriage license with my new name and a driver's license. A simple email could have taken care of this or a phone call but instead I am instantly suspended and have to wait for the situation to be rectified for me to withdraw the monies I have earned. I didn't do anything wrong! You put my pen name in the wrong box and now my name doesn't match, um whose fault is that? Let's move past that, how many stories have I seen/heard of people with a million different names working a million different places and maybe having the right paperwork or not. I submitted my passport and my social, that has not changed. My first name is rather unique and I am not playing a switcharoo type thing so what is the problem? I feel like I have been harshly punished for something I didn't do and something that is simply a clerical error.

I really just had to vent because I found it absurd. These are the types of things that make bureaucracies ineffective and serve to do nothing but punish those who are trying to "do the right thing." I am out there working, getting paid and doing it in my own way, not taking public assistance and finding a way to be productive in a harsh job market. No, wait, we don't like that so we will cut off your access. Seriously!?

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