And So Begins My New Life

Join me as I embark on a new life and new career in Funeral Services.

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Location: Southeast, United States

I'm a Funeral Services graduate embarking on a new career. I graduated high school in 1981, served honorably in the United States Navy from 1982-1986, been married since 1986, and have one son. I've relocated to a new state and have begun working in my chosen profession of Funeral Services, and I've never been happier.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Identity Theft, In My Own Workplace

This morning, my boss got a call about 7am (we were not open; he had the phones forwarded to his cell, as he does every night after hours). A family had a death and was price shopping. He gave them the information, then they called our new acquisition, which has an answering service. Of course, the answering service called my boss since he covers those calls, as well. It was the same family, wanting the same information. So, while pretending to be me, he undercut our own price by $100. He pretended to be me because he has this paranoia about people finding out we own both locations, and he had already given them his name when they called the first time. Frankly, it's the worst kept secret in town. All the funeral homes know we now have two locations. Eventually, around 11:15, we get the call, so he sends me to make the removal, set an appointment with the family, and sit down with them. Bear in mind, now, he had a lengthy conversation with them earlier while telling them he was me. So now I'm in a position where they can say that "I" told them something, and I wouldn't know if "I" did or not. And sure enough, my boss wanted me to collect an additional amount of money to cover the medical examiner fee. When I mentioned that to them, they said that "I" had told them that X amount of dollars was supposed to cover everything except death certificates. So I took the fee off, which did not make my boss happy. I told him I didn't appreciate being put in this situation. He gets mad and tells me he has to go behind the owner all the time and finish up arrangements. I pointed out that while that may be true, he never had to pretend to be the owner. Then they couldn't make up their minds when they wanted services, where they wanted them, and there was a great deal of confusion about when the cremation would be accomplished. The law here is no cremations can occur within 48 hours of the death. They misunderstood what my boss had told them, and thought the cremation would be completed within 48 hours. It was not a good day. The upside is, the service is scheduled for his Saturday to work, so he'll have to deal with them from here on out.
This is my second challenging family this week. The other day I went on a call and told the spouse we would call to set up an appointment. When I called, I was told the spouse was waiting to talk to the children and they would call me back. So the next morning, I get a call from the spouse wanting to know if the death certificates are ready. I said that no, they weren't, because you haven't come in yet to give me the information I need to generate them. We set up an appointment, for which they were 30 minutes late, and I finally got the death certificate prepared and to the doctor. I was worried about us not getting paid, but it turns out that won't be an issue.


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