Friday, May 16, 2008

Automated Phone Systems

Andrew and I have been really looking forward to our stimulus payment. I'm getting braces, so we thought it would cover a good chunk of the cost on those!

The deadline for our stimulus payment to arrive in our direct deposit was today. It finally arrived... half the amount it should have.

We received $600. I mean, that's great. But we were really hoping for the full $1200 that's supposed to go to married couples who make under $75k a year.

I spent an hour on the phones trying to talk to somebody. They have a wonderful automated system that gives you two options: Do I Qualify? and When Will I Receive My Stimulus Payment? If you don't answer one of those options, they disconnect you. If you do, it's more automated crap that doesn't answer any of my questions.

I called my local office. Their automated system said they don't have agents to talk with us, either.

I called the business line and couldn't get through. I called the individual tax line, and there was no one to talk to either. Finally, through that line, by not answering any of their options through five cycles, they finally connected me to an agent...

....who connected me back to the automated system.

It was great.

So I went through the whole process again, and when an agent answered and said she were going to connect me to the automated system, I cried out, "PLEASE, please wait!"

And in one breath, I said, "Pleasewedidgetourstimulus. Wegotitbutitwasn'ttherightamount. Please,please,theautomatedsystemonlyhastwooptions. Noneofthoseoptionsapplytous. Please,it'sonlyaboutifyouqualifyorwhentoexpectthepayment. We'vealreadygottenours,it'sjustforthewrongamount. Please,Idon'tknowwhototalktoaboutthis problem."

And she said?

We have a really high number of calls. I can only redirect you to this number. You probably won't be able to talk to any agent today. You might want to call back tomorrow, and maybe you'll get to talk to someone then.

I'm glad she answered me, but they might as well have added that to their automated system. Something like
If these options don't apply to you, please call back at a less busy time to talk directly to an agent.

Then I wouldn't have manned the phone for an hour to get that tidbit of info.

How did all your stimulus stuff work out? Did you all get what you expected and when you expected it?


Anonymous said...

We got exactly what we, zilch, zippo, nada, nil, the big's a great system, we paid in, and got nothing ya, cms

whirledpeas1129 said...

They seem pretty confused over there, though. Maybe they'll accidently send you some money! ;-)