Tag Archives: yet more work rants

Frolicking on the Medicare website

15 Mar

Large amounts of sarcasm should be assumed with that title, by the way. 

So, for the first time in a million years, I had to obtain information on a plaintiff’s Medicare lien status.   Just let me say that the Medicare.gov website is about as helpful as a bikini in a snow storm.  (Actually, I guess a bikini top could double as ear warmers.)  It was also about as much fun as sticking your hand in a blender. 

We had sent the plaintiff discovery asking if Medicare had paid any claims, if so, how much, blah, blah, blah.  Instead of answering the questions, since they SHOULD know this since they have to inform Medicare of any liability or worker’s compensation claims, they sent me a signed Consent to Release form and basically said, “Have fun.”   Golly gee, thanks. 

My boss calls me up and asks if we sent them the Medicare discovery and if so, where is it.  Of course, it was in the notebook of discovery he had in front of him, and scanned in the computer.  As, dum-dum-dum, “Discovery!”   I’m a frickin’ genius, I tell you.  Then he asks me what we’re supposed to do with the release.  Good question.  I told him I was hoping he knew, and to my relief he laughed instead of sighing or scowling.  We must have had a good billing month in last month.

So I go upon my happy way thinking, “Tra-la-la, I should be able to hop on the Medicare website, find something dealing with liability claims or liens.”  Right?  Oh God, no.  That would have made too much sense.  I fall back on my old friend Google.  After looking at a website entitled something like “Medicare liens for Dummies”, which most assuredly meant me at that point, I learned nothing except plaintiffs have a lot of hoops to jump through now with Medicare liens. 

Finally I discover the MSPRC acronym and find out there’s a whole entity just for processing the claims dealing with liability insurance, no-fault insurance and worker’s compensation.  I was then introduced to the Medicare Secondary Payer Recovery Contractor.   Seriously?  You guys couldn’t have mentioned this on the Medicare website?  Google is my BFF.  Forever and ever. 

For some of you paralegals, I’m sure this is seriously old news.  You may be rolling your eyes and thinking, “Duh!”  I just hadn’t had the pleasure of dealing with it in so long.  And in case you are just as clueless, and feel as behind the times as I did today, the website is http://www.msprc.info.   Scroll to the bottom and there’s a section on Proof of Representation. 

Here’s the fun part:  If you click on the “Liability Insurance, No-Fault and Worker’s Compensation Recovery Process” link, it downloads a PDF page that says, “Refer to the Proof of Representation versus Consent to Release Power Point.”  Okay, again, really?  We have to download a one page PDF just to tell us to pull up a Power Point/PDF?   All I want is a frickin’ address to send the request for information!  This information isn’t so complicated that we need a bloody power point presentation!   

No wonder the government has no money.  Once again, life is pointlessly made more complicated.  I need a drink.